Gaining weight and bulking up are frequent topics of discussion with Gainful customers. There are many factors that contribute to weight gain, and it's not enough to simply have your personalized protein powder and expect a magic formula.
To achieve weight gain, you have to be in a calorie surplus. This means consuming more calories per day than your body would need to maintain a stable weight. Eating an extra few hundred calories per day should result in a slow and healthy weight gain. We suggest shooting for only a couple pounds per month. This may seem slow compared to your overall weight gain goals, but it definitely adds up, and gaining weight is a slow process. Along with that, of course you want to consume enough protein to support the weight gain.
Your personalized protein powder will help supply both calories and protein to your day, but the rest of your diet is super important too! We're happy to give you a high calorie formula, but we still recommend getting most of your nutrition from your food (supplemented by protein powder).
We don't recommend turning to junk foods to put on weight. You should still be eating a lot of fruits and vegetables, grains, dairy alternatives, and protein sources (from food and protein powder both). If you are really struggling to gain weight though still, you can try including some more calorically dense foods like nuts and seeds, peanut butter, red meat, high fat dairy, fatty seafood, whole eggs, etc. Try to eat very frequently throughout the day to help get all of the nutrition you need. Snack in between meals and before bed when you can. It’s tough to get all of your calories you need if you are just eating a couple meals a day – especially if you have a fast metabolism.
A great way to integrate your protein powder into your weight gain routine is to make smoothies with it. If you blend the protein powder with milk, yogurt, peanut butter, ice cream, honey, or fruit you can make a really delicious smoothie while greatly increasing the calories, protein, and other nutrients added by the whole foods. A 1,000+ calorie smoothies sounds like a tall order, but is actually very easy to whip up. However, you shouldn't go overboard when packing on calories, as it can cause rapid and unhealthy weight gain (which in turn leads to adding unnecessary fat). Just a few hundred extra calories per day should lead to a gradual healthy weight gain of a couple pounds per month. Weight and muscle gain are very slow processes when done correctly.
And, of course, you can always try tracking calories. Mobile apps like MyFitnessPal can help you track all of your food and tell you how many calories you are eating. If you are not getting any weight gain, simply bump the calories up by a little bit and continue to monitor. Make small changes until you start to see the results that you want.
If you'd like to get serious about a specific nutrition plan, reach out to your Registered Dietitian by logging into Gainful.com and navigating to the "My Dietitian" tab.