Eating the right foods and following a structured meal plan is essential for gaining weight in a healthy way. If you are looking to add some extra pounds or bulk up, here are simple eleven diet strategies you can follow to reach your goals.
Why You Need To Gain Weight?
In this world, where many people are struggling to lose weight this post comes across surprising to many But there can be many reasons why you want to gain weight, such as building muscle mass for athletic performance, recovering from illness or injury, or simply trying to reach a healthy weight.
It’s important to understand that healthy weight gain requires a balanced approach that includes both proper nutrition and physical activity.
In this post, we’ll be focusing on dietary strategies that can help you achieve your weight gain goals in a safe and sustainable manner.
1. Understand Your Weight Gain Goals
When it comes to weight gain, it’s important to tailor your diet according to your goals. If you want to focus on gaining lean muscle, for instance, you’ll need to make sure that you’re eating a higher amount of protein than carbs and fat. Similarly, if you have general fat-gain goals, then you’ll need to pay more attention to the quantity (rather than quality) of your food choices.
Setting specific, achievable weight gain goals is an important first step in any weight gain plan. It’s important to consult with a healthcare provider or nutritionist to determine the right amount of weight to gain and the time frame in which to achieve it. They can help you determine a healthy weight range based on your age, height, and other factors.
Once you have a target weight in mind, you can begin to plan your diet and exercise routine to help you reach that goal.
It’s also important to be realistic about your weight gain goals. Rapid, excessive weight gain can strain the body and may lead to health problems. On the other hand, slow, gradual weight gain allows the body to adjust and can be more sustainable in the long term.
In addition to setting a target weight, consider setting other goals related to your diet and physical activity. For example, you might aim to eat a certain number of calories per day or to engage in resistance training a certain number of times per week. These smaller, achievable goals can help keep you motivated and on track towards your overall weight gain goal.
2. Know Your Calorie Needs
Your calorie needs depend on your age, sex, activity level, and other factors. Generally speaking, to gain weight you need to consume more calories than you burn through physical activity and everyday living.
Increase Calorie Intake
The exact number of calories needed will vary from person to person. A good starting point is to aim for an extra 500-1000 calories per day above your daily caloric needs.
This can be achieved by consuming more meals throughout the day, adding calorie-dense foods like nuts, health bars and dried fruit to your diet and avoiding skipping meals. Additionally, drinking high-calorie smoothies is a great way to hit your daily calorie goals without feeling overly full.
3. Balance Macronutrients In Your Diet
To gain weight, you should aim to increase your calorie intake and focus on consuming a balanced diet that includes all three macronutrients: carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.
Aim for 45-65% of your total caloric intake as carbohydrates. Choose complex carbs such as whole grains, starchy vegetables, legumes, fruits, and dairy products.
Eating complex carbohydrates and healthy fats, such as nut butters, avocado, whole grains, and legumes are an excellent way to increase your overall calorie intake. Complex carbs provide sustained energy over a longer period of time which can help to keep you feeling full for longer.
Protein is an essential nutrient for building and repairing tissues in the body, including muscle tissue. Therefore, adequate protein intake is important for those trying to gain weight, especially if you’re also participating in resistance training to build muscle mass.
The recommended daily intake of protein varies depending on factors such as age, gender, weight, and activity level. Generally, adults should aim for 0.8-1 gram of protein per kilogram of body weight per day.
To increase your protein intake, focus on incorporating high-protein foods into your diet. Aim for 10-35% of your total caloric intake as proteins. Choose lean proteins such as fish, poultry, eggs, beans, nuts, and seeds.
Aim for 20-35% of your total caloric intake. Choose healthy fats such as olive oil, avocados, nuts, and seeds.
Healthy fats also play an important role in helping you maintain steady energy levels throughout the day while providing essential building blocks for maintaining muscle structure and hormones.
4. Include Filling Fibre-Rich Foods In Your Diet
Filling fibre-rich foods are a great way to gain weight. Fibre helps to keep you feeling full for longer and can help prevent overeating. Eating high-fibre foods such as whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts and seeds can help you reach your weight gain goals. These foods are also packed with essential vitamins and minerals that will help support your overall
5. Choose Nutrient Dense Foods
Nutrient dense foods are packed with vitamins and minerals that are essential for your body’s growth and development. Eating more fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains can help you reach your caloric goals without sacrificing important vitamins and minerals. Furthermore, nutrient-rich foods tend to contain fewer empty calories which makes it easier to achieve your goals without feeling overly full or sluggish.
Take a multivitamin supplement to ensure you are getting all the essential vitamins and minerals your body needs.
6. Try Weight Gain Supplements or Protein Powders
Weight gain supplements and protein powders can be a great way to help you reach your weight gain goals.
Weight gain supplements are typically high in calories and contain ingredients such as carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that can help you reach your desired weight.
Protein powders are also a great option for those looking to increase their muscle mass. They provide essential amino acids
7. Don’t Skip Meals
Skipping meals can lead to overeating later in the day, which can cause weight gain. It is important to spread out your meals throughout the day so that you are eating smaller portions more frequently.
Have Several Small Meals Throughout the Day
Eating several small meals throughout the day can be an effective way to gain weight. Eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner with healthy snacks in between is a great way to ensure that you are getting the nutrients you need while avoiding overeating.
Eating more frequently helps to increase your calorie intake, which is important for gaining weight. It also helps to keep your metabolism running at a higher rate, which can help you burn more calories and build muscle. Try to focus on eating nutrient-dense foods such as lean proteins, complex carbohydrates, healthy fats, and plenty of fruits and vegetables.
Increase Portion Sizes With Each Meal
Increasing the size of your meals can be one of the quickest ways to increase your weight. Start by increasing the portion size of your carb sources like rice, potatoes, oats and whole grain breads. Also consider adding more fat to each meal; fatty foods like avocados, nut butters and oils are a great way to get more calories without feeling overly full. Finally, don’t forget about protein; eating more poultry, eggs and dairy products will help you reach your goals faster.
8. Make Food Variety A Priority
Figure out nutritious meal plans designed to aid in gaining weight healthfully
- Add Healthy Snacks
- Snacking can help you consume more calories throughout the day. Choose nutrient-dense snacks such as nuts, seeds, yogurt, and fruit.
- Drink Your Calories
- High-calorie shakes and smoothies are a great way to increase your calorie intake. You can make them with ingredients like nut butters, avocado, yogurt, fruit, honey, and protein powder. They’re also a great way to get in extra vitamins and minerals. Just be sure to watch your sugar intake if you’re using sweetened ingredients like juice or flavored
- Adding calorie-containing beverages to your diet can help you increase your calorie intake. Try smoothies made with milk, yogurt, and fruit or milkshakes made with ice cream and milk.
- Drink Plenty Of Water Throughout The Day
- Drinking plenty of water is important for gaining weight, as it helps to keep your body hydrated and functioning properly. Aim to drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.
9. Get Enough Sleep
Getting adequate sleep is essential for gaining weight, as it helps to regulate hormones and metabolism. Aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night.
10. Exercise regularly
Regular exercise can help you gain weight by building muscle mass and increasing your appetite. Aim to do at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise per day. Choose exercises that target all of your major muscle groups, such as weightlifting, bodyweight exercises, and resistance training.
Incorporate Weight-training Workouts Into Your Routine (Optional)
- Barbell Squats: Start with your feet shoulder-width apart and the barbell resting across your upper back. Lower yourself down until your thighs are parallel to the floor, then press up through your heels to return to the starting position.
- Deadlifts: Stand with feet hip-width apart and hold a barbell in front of you with an overhandgrip. Keeping your back straight, bend at the hips and knees to lower the barbell until it reaches mid-shin level. Reverse the motion to return to the starting position.
- Lunges: Stand with feet hip-width apart and take a large step forward with one foot. Lower your body until both knees are bent at 90 degrees, then press through your front heel toreturn to the starting position.
- Push-Ups: Start in a plank position with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and your feet together. Lower your body until your chest touches the floor, then press up through your palms to return to the starting position.
- Pull-Ups: Hang from a pull-up bar with an overhand grip thatis slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Pull your body up until your chin is over the bar, then lower yourself back down to the starting position.
11. Track Progress with Online Resources and Tools
There are some great online tools to monitor your progress in the journey of weight gain. Try these online resources and tools to remain on track of reaching your goal.
1. MyFitnessPal: MyFitnessPal is a free online resource that allows users to track their weight gain progress by logging meals, tracking calories, and setting goals. The app also provides personalized nutrition advice and exercise plans.
2. Fitbit: Fitbit is a wearable device that tracks your activity level, sleep patterns, and calorie intake. It can help you monitoryour progress and reach your fitness goals.
3. Lose It!: Lose It! is a weight loss app that helps users track their calorie intake, set goals, and monitor their progress. The app also provides personalized meal plans and exercise routines tailored to the user’s needs.
4. 7 Minute Workout: 7 Minute Workout is an app that provides quick and effective workouts that can be done in just 7 minutes. The app includes a variety of exercises that target different muscle groups and can be tailored to the user’s fitness level.
5. Nike Training Club: Nike Training Club is an app that provides users with personalized workouts and nutrition plans. The app also offers access to exclusive content from top athletes and trainers, as well as tips on how to stay motivated.
Some Ideas For Weight Gain Meal Plan
Eating at regular intervals throughout the day is an effective way to gain weight and maintain your nutrient intake. Aim to have three meals a day, with two snacks in between meals. Make sure you plan for plenty of nutritious foods such as proteins, complex carbohydrates, dairy, fruits and vegetables. Avoid skipping meals or going from one meal to another without any snacks in between as this can cause unhealthy spikes in your blood sugar levels.
Simple High Calorie Meal Plan
Breakfast: 2 slices of whole-wheat bread topped with peanut butter and banana.
Midmorning snack: A smoothie made with 1 cup of low-fat yogurt, 1 cup of frozen berries, 1 tablespoon of honey and a scoop of protein powder.
Lunch: Grilled chicken with roasted vegetables served on a bed of wild rice.
Afternoon snack: Handful of nuts and dried fruits.
Dinner: Baked Salmon with a green salad and sweet potatoes.
High Protein Meal Plan
Try including lean proteins such as skinless poultry and fish, Greek yogurt, eggs, peanut butter, tofu and legumes into your meals.
Don’t forget to include healthy carbs at each meal such as oatmeal, brown rice, quinoa and sweet potatoes for sustained energy throughout the day.
Get creative with your breakfast shake by adding some banana or nuts for extra calories.
Otherwise toss together a turkey wrap stuffed with lettuce and hummus for an easy midday snack or even a late-night snack with protein pancakes!
In this post, we’ve discussed several diet strategies that can help you achieve your weight gain goals in a safe and sustainable manner.
To recap, these strategies include: setting specific, achievable weight gain goals; focusing on calorie intake; eating smaller, more frequent meals and increasing portion sizes; and incorporating resistance training into your exercise routine.
By implementing these strategies and consulting with a healthcare provider or nutritionist, you can create a balanced plan that helps you gain weight in a healthy way.
Remember, it’s important to be patient and consistent in your efforts. Weight gain, like weight loss, takes time and requires a commitment to a healthy lifestyle.
Don’t get discouraged if you don’t see results right away. Stay focused on your goals and continue to make healthy choices in your diet and exercise routine. With dedication and persistence, you can successfully achieve your weight gain goals.
Anupriya is an Alternative Educator, Holistic Healing Trainer, Trance Medium and now an Author who has mastered many different healing and teaching modalities. She has worked in La Wisdom Alternative Learning Center in Bangalore for 2 years. She has educated children and parents on varied topics like emotional awareness, casteism in india, team work, career choices and addiction awareness etc. She continues to intrigue the minds of young people with her logical and experimental approach. Having gone through her own painful spiritual journey, she also learnt every healing modality that she could get her hands on. She has been training people in – Meditations, Reiki Energy Healing, Emotional Freedom technique, different forms of Acupressure and Reflexology, Ayurvedic Colour Therapy, Sujok, Naturopathy, Bach Flower Remedies, Chakra Healing, Angel Healing and Pendulum Dowsing etc from past 5 years. She has also developed faster healing methods for trauma and abuse victims using various guided meditations, creative visualisations and breathwork. Her faster methods work best with working professionals who have little to no time for themselves and children who have no patience as she teaches very quick tips and tricks to recover from painful circumstances. She also offers longer ‘energy and consciousness’ courses for adults, teenagers and children who wish to awaken a deeper human and spiritual awareness within them.
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