While most of the global population today is obsessed with losing weight, there are some people for whom gaining weight is a challenge. People with a skinny and frail body structure or fast metabolism can find it difficult to gain body weight and for such individuals even a few pounds can bring about a great difference. People with too low body weight can suffer from various health issues like bone density loss, organ damage and lack of menstruation in women. Individuals recovering from eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia can also gain body weight in a healthy way by including some natural weight gain foods in the daily diet along with some light exercises.
The secret to healthy weight gain is increasing the amount of calorie intake with the help of healthy foods. Consuming extremely high-calorie foods that have absolutely no nutritional value does not health in healthy weight gain. Instead, it leads to poor fitness and increases fat mass in the body instead of lean muscle mass. Here are 16 potential superfoods that will help to gain weight in a healthy way.
Whole eggs are one of the best natural sources of protein which is easily available and easy to prepare. It is also one of the most healthy foods to gain weight and contains vitamins A, D and E along with good cholesterol which does not affect heart health in an adverse manner.
Eggs also promote an increase in height particularly during puberty thanks to the vitamins A and D, both of which are essential for increasing height.
Although weight watchers usually steer clear from this food group, lean cuts of red meat are actually good if you want to gain weight muscle, and it works far better than supplements to gain weight. Lean steaks contain loads of protein and iron and if you want to opt for fatty cuts then choose the ones where the meat is marbled. Such cuts are not only high in calories but also extremely delicious.
You can opt for beef tenderloin and T-bone. But it is best to combine red meat with vegetables and whole grains rather than unhealthy saturated fats.
Chicken is yet another easily available and invaluable source of protein and nutrients which works even better than weight gain pills. A 100 grams serving of chicken contains almost 25 grams of protein.
Just include chicken in your diet for one month in order to notice a radical change. You can also enjoy the chicken with the skin for an extra calorie boost.
Oily fishes such as salmon and tuna are some of the best non-vegetarian foods to gain weight. Salmon is by far the best bet for putting on lean muscle mass, and it is extremely healthy.
Consuming 2 portions of salmon every day is all you need to get the necessary nutrients and bulk up. Fresh tuna is a healthier alternative to canned tuna that is great for gaining weight in a healthy way.
Eating shellfish such as shrimps, lobsters, oysters and mussels are a delicious and yummy way to gain weight, and they must be included in healthy meals to gain weight. Shrimps have high cholesterol content, but it is not bad for your health.
The nutrients and necessary acid content in the shrimps provide healthy calories to the body, and it is undoubtedly the best food to eat to gain weight.
Whole fat milk holds an important place in healthy diet to gain weight because it is rich in calories, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. 1 cup of whole fat milk contains 13 grams of carbs, 8 grams of protein, 150 calories and 13 grams of healthy fats. We all know that proteins are the body building blocks that aid to form new muscles whereas saturated fats increase the production of hormone testosterone for greater muscle growth.
Dark chocolate powder is a great addition to whole fat milk. We all know the advantages and benefits of dark chocolate on skin, but it is extremely beneficial for promoting healthy weight gain as well. Milk is definitely the best superfood for weight gain and muscle generation.
Almost all of us like to add a hint of butter to our food in order to spice it up. Butter is also a potent dairy product rich in fats that help in healthy weight gain. 100 grams of butter include 81 grams of fat. Include a tablespoon or two of this dairy product in your daily diet in order to bulk up quickly. But consume butter in moderation because it contains a certain percentage of saturated fat which can clog the arteries.
Saturated fats, when consumed in limitation helps raise HDL (good) cholesterol and transform the small and dense LDL cholesterol to large benign LDL cholesterol. Butter also contains a lot of healthy fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A, E, and K2.
Natural, unflavored yogurt is the ultimate answer to the question of how to gain weight and muscle. Greek yogurt is a healthier option compared to regular yogurt because it is a concentrated product that contains twice the protein that is essential in order to bulk up.
The special straining procedure involved in producing Greek yogurt results in a higher concentration of casein, a slow-digesting milk protein that provides steady release increase in amino-acids levels. Greek yogurt also holds an important place in healthy bodybuilding diet for muscle gain.
Consuming cheese on a daily basis is one of the most delicious and healthy ways to gain weight fast. Cheese is not only a delicious dairy product that can in included in almost any dish; it is basically concentrated milk that contains a high amount of proteins, fat, calories and calcium.
Just 1 serving of cheddar cheese is packed with whopping 69 calories. Cheese comes in a number of lip-smacking varieties so it can be paired in moderation with eggs, chicken, and vegetable salads.
Oatmeal and weight loss are closely interlinked but can oatmeal also help in gaining weight and increasing muscle mass? Well, it is the ideal nutritious breakfast loaded with fiber and vital nutrients to help with healthy weight gain. A 100 gram serving of oats contains 17 grams of protein along with other important minerals.
In addition to having proteins and complex carbohydrates, oatmeal also contains the nutrient niacin which the body uses for building muscles. It also includes vitamins and minerals such as thiamin, folic acid, biotin and vitamin E.
This is one nutrient-packed fruit that is shunned by weight watchers because of its high-calorie content, but it is often included in healthy diet plans for weight gain. A single banana contains almost 105 calories and provides an instant boost of energy. It is also loaded with carbohydrates that make it an amazing post workout food for replenishing the body with lost nutrients.
Banana is easy to digest fruit that helps to improve digestion and helps to boost the mood thanks to its tryptophan content.
Fruit and vegetable meal plan for weight loss have become immensely popular, but certain fruits and vegetables are also useful for weight loss as well. A diet for healthy weight gain should contain 40% carbohydrates and what better way to load up on carbohydrates than potatoes? In addition to carbs, potatoes also contain amino acids such as glutamine and arginine that make it a wonderful option for weight gain.
But it is best to consume potatoes along with the skin in order to retain the optimum nutritional value of the vegetable. You can also opt for sweet potatoes that are much higher in calories and contain carbohydrates, proteins, vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants.
A balanced diet for healthy weight gain is incomplete without the inclusion of delicious and nutty soybean into it. Soybean is a healthy high-calorie food that in rich in protein, calcium, iron, fiber, and B-vitamins.
A 100 gram serving of soybean contains as much as 36 grams of protein that helps to meet your protein targets while following a weight gaining diet. It also helps to lower cholesterol levels in the blood.
Avocado is not only a popular ingredient in the homemade recipe for hair mask for dry and damaged hair, but is exceptionally beneficial for overall health as well. But how do you gain body weight with avocado? Well, this delicious creamy fruit is loaded with heart-healthy monounsaturated fats that help in bulking up in a healthy manner.
Half an avocado contains 140 calories along with high levels of vitamin E, folic acid, and potassium. This versatile fruit can be enjoyed with salads, meat dishes, vegetables or used as a spread on toast.
Adding some extra fat to your dishes makes it easier to add up calories for a healthy diet for weight gain. Some of the healthiest of oils that can be added to the daily diet are olive oil, canola oil, almond oil, flaxseed oil, coconut oil, etc. A tablespoon of oil contains approximately 120 calories and 15 grams of fat.
The fats found in these oils are mostly unsaturated fats that help weigh gain while reducing the level of cholesterol in the blood. You can use these healthy oils as a dressing for salads, pasta, and steamed vegetables.
Last but not the least are the healthy nuts and seeds that are high in calories and packed with nutrients. You can choose from healthy varieties such as peanuts, almonds, walnuts, pistachios, etc. 1 cup of mixed nuts contains approximately 530 calories, 45 grams of fat, 20 grams of carbs and 20 grams of protein and makes a delectable snack.
You can also add flax seeds, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds to the snack mixture to load up on essential fatty acids. They also contain high levels of calcium, magnesium, and vitamin E.
Skinny guys and girls can transform their entire appearance and get and attractive and shapely physique by combining these foods with some effective exercises. Here are a few simple exercises to gain weight at home without using any complicated piece of equipment. The best thing is that these exercises can be done by both men and women.
Squats are one of the simplest exercises that are often included in the best calisthenics workout routine for toning and strengthening the lower body. It can be practiced by both men and women for toning the glutes, hips, thighs and calves. Once you master the simple squat form, you can progress to more difficult versions by adding weights in order to get better results. It is one of the functional exercises to gain weight for women that help to provide a well-shaped and rounded back and in case of men it helps to develop strong and power-packed legs.
Stand with your feet placed shoulder-width apart and raise your arms in front or keep them behind your head. Now, lower your body by pushing your hips back and bending the knees. Look straight in front keeping your chest up and back flat. Squat down as low as you can and then pop up to the starting position by pushing through the heels.
Push ups is one of the best exercises for upper arms that helps to get rid of love handles and developed toned, strong and ripped arms. It also helps to strengthen the chest, shoulders, triceps and core muscles and is considered a complete muscle-building exercise that can be practiced by both men and women. In case of women, it helps to develop toned and strong arms without promoting huge biceps and triceps and in case of men it helps to bulk by skinny arms in an effective manner.
Place your arms on the ground, hands placed slightly wider than shoulder-width apart. Lower your chest till it almost touches the floor, squeeze your glutes and keep your abs tight as you lower your body and then raise it with the support of your arms. Keep your elbows close to the sides of your body.
Walking lunges are one of the best strength training exercises for both men and women that help to bulk up and enhance muscles mass in the lower part of the body. You can either do standing lunges or opt for a more advanced version called the walking lunges. You can increase the difficulty level of this exercise by including free weights such as dumbbells.
Being in a standing position keeping your feet hip-width apart, now, take a big step forward and bend your keen at 90 degree and come down to a lunging position, now rise up and take another step forward by bending the other knee at 90 degrees. Continue to move forward till you are fatigued. It is undoubtedly one of the best leg exercises for bulking up.
This is yet another easy arm and back exercise that helps to tone the back muscles. It is one of the simplest exercises to gain weight got females and develop an attractive and curvy figure. In case of men, it helps in toning up the back muscles, glutes, hips, calves and triceps. These exercises can be performed by using one’s own body weight.
Sit at the edge of a chair or bench and hold the edges with your hands. Now, come forward, move out from the seat and lower your butt towards the floor and hold the posture by keeping the pressure on the heels of your hands and then return to the sitting position. Repeat 2 to 3 sets of this exercise for best results.
This exercise is intended specifically for men. It helps do develop ripped arms and chiseled shoulders and transform the skinny frame into an appealing and attractive one in very less time. You just need to be consistent and continue to do 10 to 15 reps on workout days to gain best results.
Hold a pull-up bar with both hands using an overhand grip. Place your hands shoulder width apart and let our body hand freely. Now, pull yourself up with the help of your arms till the chin crosses over the bar and then lower your body back to the starting position. One you master the classic pull up you can increase the difficulty level you including weights.
Crunches are the best exercise to remove belly fat that also helps to increase core strength and boost lean muscle mass and provide an attractive mid-section. It can be practiced safely by both men and women without promoting the formation of six packs in case of women.
Lie flat on the carpet with your knees bent and feet placed flat on the floor. Cross the arms in front of the chest and lift your torso up towards the ceiling by using the abdominal muscles keep then contracted. Stop at the peak position and slowly lower your torso to the carpet while inhaling using a controlled movement.
This is yet another muscle building exercise than is intended specifically for men. It helps to work out the entire body and enhance the formation of lean muscle mass.
Place a barbell on the floor in front of your feet and lean down to grab the bar placing your hands shoulder-with apart. Now, stand up explosively on the balls of your feet and raise the bar to the chest level. Flip your wrists over so that the palms face the ceiling and press the bar overhead. Reverse the motion and return the barbell to the floor.
This is the final exercise in the list that does not require any equipment, all one needs is a pair of running shoes. Focusing on cardio can bring about remarkable changes in the body and enhance lean muscle mass naturally. Being gradually by going for short walking and slowly increase the speed and intensity of the walks till you can jog at a light pace.
This may take some time, and you need to be patient and consistent. Remember to pull your navel towards your core when you do cardio exercises like walking or running in order to have increased strength.
So, now that you have some idea about the foods you need to eat and the workouts you need to do to gain weight in a healthy way, plan out your diet and exercise chart and get busy to gain a whole new physique.
Devi Gajendran is a Post Graduate in Nutrition (University of Madras, Tamil Nadu) and has tons of experience in Fitness and Nutrition. She is the chief advisor and full time contributor at the Fit Indian and has the final say on all the segments under the Fit Indian paradigm, such as beauty, fitness, home remedies, diseases, diet tips, weight loss, weight gain and so on. A foodie herself, she believes in the Hippocrates quote,” Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” A fitness enthusiast, she believes that the combination of diet and exercise can work wonders. When she is not sharing her valuable knowledge about food and fitness, she likes to spend quality time with her family members, do some healthy baking and listen to soft soulful music.
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