Gaining weight in a healthy way is very important for anyone who is underweight which means their body mass index (BMI) is less than 18.5.

There are several medical conditions that can cause unhealthy weight loss which includes

  • Eating disorders
  • Thyroid problems
  • Celiac disease
  • Diabetes
  • Infections
  • Cancer

Whatever may be the reason you must always consult a medical practitioner if your BMI is low to rule out the medical related problems.

Below mentioned are some tips to gain weight in a healthy way.

  1. If your average calorie intake is lower than your calorie expenditure, you won’t gain weight. So, it’s important to take enough food to stay healthy. If you want to gain weight slowly and steadily, then aim for 300-500 calories more than you burn each day.
  2. The single most important nutrient for gaining healthy weight is protein. High-protein foods include meats, fish, eggs, many dairy products, legumes, nuts and others. 
  3. Fluids before meals can affect your appetite. Try limiting drinking until 30 minutes after you’ve eaten.
  4. Snacking on avocados, nuts, cheese, peanut butter or dried fruits between mealtimes can be a good way to gain weight.
  5. Eat energy-dense foods as much as possible. These are foods that contain many calories relative to their weight. Some energy dense foods are Almonds, walnuts, raisins, dates, full fat yogurt, oats, extra virgin olive oil, chicken, lamb, potatoes, sweet potatoes, coconut milk etc.
  6. You must exercise regularly even if you want to gain weight to stay healthy. If you are completely out of shape or you are new to training, then consider hiring a qualified personal trainer to help you get started. Building muscle can help you gain weight. Exercise may also help you get your appetite back.
  7. Have a quality sleep as it is very important to have enough sleep which will improve your muscle growth.
  8. It is a bad idea to do intermittent fasting. This is useful for weight loss and health improvement, but can make it much harder to eat enough calories to gain weight.
  9. It is advisable to quit smoking which will induce weight loss in long term.
  10. Consulting a nutritionist is always a good option before starting any regimen by your own.

– Dr. Y. Alekhya

 

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