Trying to gain weight? There are certain foods that work better for weight gain than other foods. Some foods are packed with calories, while other foods, not necessarily loaded with calories, can be eaten in large quantities before satiation starts setting in, like pasta. And still other foods tend to leave you feeling hungrier than you were before you began eating the particular item, like carrots and onions.
I’m a certified personal trainer, and every single client I have worked with, who told me their goal was to gain weight, was NOT eating a lot of food. They weren’t necessarily starving themselves, either, but there certainly was enough room in their menu to add more calories, more portions, many more bites. One of my clients was a woman who stood 5-7 and weighed 105 pounds.
I had her write me her food diary for a week. She was eating one slice of toast with breakfast, when she could have had two. She was eating one slice of pie with one scoop of ice cream for a snack, when she could have eaten two slices, or added two scoops of ice cream.
I have reason to believe that most people who claim difficulty gaining weight, who want to gain weight, simply don’t eat all that much. I recently read a fitness forum where a man, who was trying to gain weight, posted the new diet he started that was designed to make him gain weight.
I read through his sample menu, seeing a full day’s worth of eating, but at the same time, not nearly as much food as, I’m sure, the Michelin Tire Man eats, or the 270-pound lady down the street eats, or that some 250-pound wrestler eats.
What surprised me (though I guess it shouldn’t have), was that the man said that at first, it was difficult to “eat so much food” in one day. I thought, “You’re kidding! I can easily chow down that much food in one day!”
If you want to gain weight, eat a few handfuls of nuts every day. Nuts are very caloric, healthy, contain protein (that will help with muscle workouts), and come in many varieties. Try cashews, peanuts, and even sunflower seeds. Add pine nuts to salads. One tablespoon of pine nuts is about 200 calories!
Swallow a tablespoon of flax oil a day; about 100 calories, and very healthy, with “good” fats.
Eat a serving or two of white rice daily or several times a week. White rice has a reputation for inducing hunger, making you want to eat more.
Eat white bread more often, but make it organic and natural. White flour based foods can be eaten in generous quantities before satiation kicks in, and sometimes can trigger more hunger.
I don’t recommend weight gainer shakes because they’re extremely processed and don’t taste that great. The best way to gain weight is with a diet you can stick to and that’s enjoyable. It’s easy to add calories by using mayonnaise rather than catsup in sandwiches, eating salads so that you can eat high-calorie dressings, and frying potatoes in canola oil (“good” fat source).
I do NOT recommend loading up on classic junk food like candy, pastries, fast-food cheeseburgers, fast-food French fries (which are usually not cooked in canola oil), fast-food milkshakes, and of course, soda.
Make a “healthy” milkshake at home with organic whole chocolate milk, organic ice cream and organic chocolate syrup. Or, use white whole milk, ice cream and add a banana and other fruit.
To gain weight, you do not need to load up on red meat. Chicken parmesan will supply plenty of calories. So will a chicken Alfredo dish. I also don’t recommend loading up on high calorie frozen dinners simply because they are extremely processed. The healthy way to gain weight is to eat primarily whole foods. For example, the chicken parmesan can be purchased at Whole Foods Market, in their fresh foods section, along with many other high-calorie temptations, including twice-baked potatoes smothered in cheese.
Have your breakfast as prepared as possible before you go to bed, so that when you awaken, you are more inclined to eat breakfast (unless you prefer to work out first). For example, if you plan on a cheese omelet, crack the eggs and store them in a dish, and set out the pan and spatula, before doing to bed.
Though it’s said that skipping meals slows metabolism and can hinder weight LOSS efforts, do not skip meals in an attempt to gain weight. Eat at least every three hours.
Finally, to gain weight in a healthy way, commit yourself to muscle building exercises. New muscle growth will add shape to your body, and will trigger increased hunger (new muscle needs sustenance).