by Victoria Simpson
Are you too skinny? Does your metabolism seem to rival the speed of light?
Society focuses heavily on the battle to lose weight. For some individuals, however, the guns are reversed, and for those who are consistently trying to grow in size, gaining pounds can be just as tough as losing them.
According to current standards, to be considered underweight individuals must have a body mass index of less than 18.5. So, for example, a woman who is five-foot-six would weigh about 114 pounds or less. Pretty small.
Being very skinny can be an indication of another underlying condition that is impeding weight gain such as a vitamin B12 deficiency, celiac disease, being lactose intolerance, or having bacterial overgrowth syndrome and nutrient deficiencies but some people are just naturally small. Science hasn’t figured out why, exactly. Aside from a high metabolism and genetic factors, the rest is a puzzle.
But life is short. And so, while the people in the labs are trying to figure out the mystery to being tiny, here are some unmysterious ways to try and fight it:
1) CONSUME, CONSUME
In order to gain weight you will need to intake more calories than normal- that’s logical. Some sources recommend aiming to consume 300-500 more calories per day.
2) DRINK UP
If you are underweight, it may be hard to meet your daily caloric requirements simply by eating. To gain weight, it can be useful to take in additional nutritious calories by drinking whole milk, milkshakes or protein shakes without sugar.
It’s important to take in greater amounts of quality food and not just eat more junk. Sources recommend getting healthy fats from foods like peanuts, olive oil and cashews and staying away from those nasty saturated fats sitting, waiting in processed foods. Splurge sometimes if you need to, but don’t make this a mainstay. Think quality.
4) AND ALSO THINK LIKE A BODY BUILDER
Eat lots of protein to build good muscle. Protein-rich foods include cheese, milk, meat, fish, eggs, soy products such as tofu and combinations of rice or corn with beans.
Lifting weights 3 times a week can help you start to notice the difference. Doing cardio is ok too, as it may increase your appetite. Focus on recovery foods after working out, like protein shakes or milk.
6) EAT FREQUENTLY
Instead of eating more at your regular 3 meals a day, up the ante and go for 5 to 6 meals, as eating too much at once can result in indigestion, and your body might not absorb all the calories you just worked at taking in. Even if you aren’t hungry, eat anyways and notice how your appetite increases with time.
7) HIT UP THE FRIDGE LATE AT NIGHT
Just like those commercials where the guy goes for the ice cream in the dark at midnight, taking a stroll into the kitchen in the after hours can help to keep on calories. Just don’t actually reach for the ice cream, grab something better like yogurt or a granola bar. Eating late can help without even upping your food intake.
8) DRINK WATER SOME OTHER TIME
Avoid ruining your appetite by filling up on water at the table. Try to eat first and drink later, in order to fill up on the good stuff.
Last but not least, here are some of the stars that can help light the way to your goal:
Butter, peanut butter, energy bars, tuna, fruit juice, whole wheat bread, oil, bananas, oats, cheese, and yogurt.