According to the World Health Organization, 462 million adults worldwide are underweight. This is a cause for concern as it can affect your health and lead to complications in the long run.
We have all read and heard about the risks of being overweight or obese. But did you know that being underweight is also not good for you?
If you are underweight and want to increase your weight at home, there is only one way to do it – the healthy way!
How To Gain Weight The Healthy Way
Healthy Carbs and Fats
Following a diet that is high in carbohydrates and fats is one of the best ways to gain weight healthily. While carbs provide energy, healthy fats are calorie dense. Together, they gradually increase weight.
Some healthy sources of carbs and fats are:
- Whole grains
- Full-fat yoghurt
- Coconut oil
- Whole eggs
- Pumpkin and sunflower seeds
Eat More Calories
Theoretically, eating an additional 500 calories every day increases your weight by a pound in one week. So, eat more calorie- and nutrient-dense foods through the day in the form of heavy meals and snacks. You can either increase the portion sizes or eat smaller meals more frequently throughout the day. Avoid eating empty calories that do not provide any nourishment.
You can increase your calorie intake by adding nuts, seeds, or cheese as toppings in your meal.
Eat Plenty Of Protein
This is the most important nutrient required for weight gain. Your muscle is mainly made up of protein, so eating enough protein helps you gain healthy muscle weight instead of fat.
The ideal protein intake for an underweight person should be between 1.5 grams to 2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of your body weight. A study shows that when you follow a high-protein diet, most of the excess calories get stored in your muscle.
Some protein-rich foods include:
- Fatty fish
- Red meat
- Whole eggs
- Whole grains
- Nuts and seeds
- Pulses and legumes
- Dairy products
- Whey protein powder (should be mainly used if you perform high-intensity workouts)
Drink Lots Of Water
Drinking water has been synonymous with weight loss since it helps to reduce the amount of food being consumed.
But some doctors claim that drinking excess water can also lead to weight gain. They believe that the body can only flush out a limited amount of water. If you drink more water than the body can handle, it gets stored in the body and causes weight gain in the form of water weight.
Milk has been traditionally used as a method to gain weight and muscle for years. It is not only calorie dense, but it also has a good amount of protein, good fats, calcium, vitamins, and minerals. It has a combination of both casein and whey proteins that help to build muscle. Studies have shown that muscle mass increases when you combine drinking milk and weightlifting exercises.
You Will Need
1-2 glasses of warm milk
What You Have To Do
- Drink one to two glasses of warm milk during the day as a snack or as a pre- or post-workout meal.
- You can also drink warm milk before bedtime for a sound sleep.
How Often You Need To Do This
You can drink about one to two glasses of milk per day. Try not to consume more than two glasses every day.
Try any or a combination of the above methods to gain weight. Below are a few tips that can help you.
Tips To Gain Weight
- Don’t drink water before or during meals. This might make you eat lesser.
- Don’t opt for a “lite” or “skim” version of foods. For example, if you are drinking milk or eating yoghurt, go for the full-fat version.
- Have larger portion sizes. You can use bigger plates to ensure a bigger portion size.
- Eat frequently throughout the day.
- Make sure that your midmeal snacks are calorie- and nutrient-dense.
- Do weight training 3 to 4 days a week.
- Use natural or herbal products as mass gainers instead of artificial supplements. That way, when you need to stop, you will not start losing the built-up muscle easily.
- Get a good night’s sleep. Resting well allows for proper muscle growth.