What to Eat to Gain Weight Healthily
As I mentioned, you should be thinking how to gain weight healthily and not how to gain weight fast. No point gaining xx muscles within the next few years but put the next 50 years of your life at risk. Not all calories are made equal, so think of the food sources from which to get your calories. Ideally, you would want to get your calories from whole foods.
You could read my other article – what to avoid to gain weight healthily – for a more complete picture.
Do also check out Dave Ruel’s Anabolic Cooking Program to learn how to cook, which I believe is the secret to gaining sustainable weight heathily and effectively.
Food to Eat to Gain Weight Healthily
Not exactly a food but I still want to emphasize this. You have to drink lots of it. Water will prevent dehydration, which can be easily brought about by an intense session in the gym. This is especially so when you are on a fat loss diet to get lean and ripped – you will be even more prone to becoming dehydrated.
Losing water/not drinking enough can easily affect your bodily functions and your strength as well, which affects the effectiveness of your gym workout.
Water also serves to transport nutrients around your body. This is crucial especially when you consume bodybuilding supplements.
My favourite, since they are cheap, easy to eat, can be made in many different ways and contains a lot of nutrients.
Choose omega 3 eggs for extra nutrients (1):
- Has 39% less Arachidonic Acid, an inflammatory Omega-6 fatty acid that most people eat too much of
- Has 5 times as much Omega-3 as the conventional eggs
For those worried about the high cholesterol value of egg yolks, fret not.
They are actually jam packed full of important nutrients, especially the fat soluble vitamins and essential fatty acids.
A study by the University of Connecticut also concluded that there were either no change or beneficial changes in the cholesterol levels of people who consume 3 or 4 eggs a day (2).
It’s actually not the cholesterol that’s bad for you. It’s the combination of poor metabolism, deficient diets and toxins that is bad for you (when they combine together to break down cholesterol.
3. Lean meat
Lean meat such as turkey, chicken or sirloin should be your preferred choice.
Always go for the leanest you can find!
Meats are good sources of proteins for you to gain weight healthily.
This is a must, not just for its proteins, but for its omega 3 fatty acids (which many other foods and diets lack), vitamins and minerals.
Avoid this only if you have some allergy to it.
Ideally, get genuine wild salmon if you can to gain weight healthily.
Fruits are such a wonder source of nutrients.
You get complex carbs, fibers, vitamins, minerals, and the list goes on.
Make sure you eat at least 2 servings of fruits per day.
Also, have a variety of fruits to benefit from the various vitamins and minerals which will help you gain weight healthily.
Surprisingly, vegetables actually aid your recovery a lot.
Their high antioxidant properties will help reduce the amount of free radicals from intensive training and help heal damaged muscle cells.
Vegetables also contain vitamins, minerals, phytochemicals and fibers which are ALL beneficial to your body to gain weight healthily.
7. Other sources to gain weight heathily:
Legumes, rice, grains, green tea, extra virgin olive oil, POTATO, oatmeal.
For a comprehensive list of food items to eat, classified by carbs, proteins and fats, do sign up to my free inner circle.
8. Healthy fats:
Flaxseed oil, olive oil, avocado, nuts.
Basically sources of monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats and omega 3 fatty acids.
Saturated fats are actually alright as well, contrary to some popular beliefs. Check out ectomorph diet guidelines to understand why if you have not.
(1) Sammana, S., Kunga, F. P., Cartera, L. M., Fostera, M. J., Ahmada, Z. I., Phuyala, J. L., et al. (2009). Fatty acid composition of certified organic, conventional and omega-3 eggs. Food Chemistry, Volume 116, Issue 4, 911–914. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0308814609003513
(2) Fernandez, ML. (2006). Dietary cholesterol provided by eggs and plasma lipoproteins in healthy populations. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 9(1), 8-12. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16340654?dopt=Citation
Articles in This Section (Ectomorph Nutrition):
- Ectomorph Diet Guidelines: start here. If you only have time for one article, this is it.
- Metabolic Rate & Calorie Count: it’s simple, eat more calories than you spend. But too much more = fats; too litte = no gains. Answer: Count it.
- What not to eat to gain weight healthily: avoid these if you are serious about healthy weight gain
- When to eat to gain weight: learn to leverage the 4 phases for maximum muscle and weight gain