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11 Healthy Foods That Can Help You To Gain Weight

By Riddhi Parmar +2 more

On the internet, and you will find many diet plans for weight loss. But you won’t find much for weight gain! In fact, you will hardly get any plans for weight gain. However, there are a significant number of people who struggle with their bony fame, failing to add the needed mass. 

Being underweight or skinny may have an underlying issue. Eating too few calories for a prolonged period makes you underweight that leads to different medical illnesses. Conversely, eating too many calories causes a person to become overweight, which is also a not good sign. 

The weight gain equation is pretty much simple as you consume more calories than you burn. If your metabolism is high or you do vigorous exercise, you need to consume more calories to meet your body requirements. Simply overeating can’t be a solution to gain weight. However, eating five to six times a day, eating more protein and fat, adding high-calorie snacks are among the ways to gain weight naturally. 

People consume various supplements and unhealthy food to gain weight quickly without proper research. These may land them into some medical problems, thus think twice before eating anything. Instead, eat healthy foods that build muscle and increase your strength. If you are trying to gain some weight, here are a few options for healthy foods that you should eat.

How to Gain Weight In A Healthy Manner?

As mentioned earlier, the main concept is to consume more calories than you use during your day. A rough estimate you can aim for is to take in 300 – 500 more calories than you need. Another general idea is to eat more meals each day, rather than increasing the size of your existing meals. Increasing the amounts of fats and protein in your diet is also almost a necessity when you’re trying to gain weight. One thing you should not do is consume unhealthy fats and junk foods in an effort to put on weight. These kinds of foods will result in weight only on your tummy and can cause serious long term issues down the road like diabetes, obesity and heart issues. It is also a good idea to incorporate regular (but not intensive) exercise into your daily routine, this can help build up your muscle mass.

Did You Know?

  • In 2021, 45% of deaths among children under 5 years old were linked to undernutrition. source: WHO
  • In 2014, approximately 462 million adults worldwide were underweight. source: WHO
  • In 2014, 1.9 billion adults worldwide were overweight or obese. source: WHO
  • Among U.S. households with children, 12.5% experienced food insecurity in 2021. source: USDA

Foods That Help in Gaining Weight

1: Milk

Milk is a complete food because it is rich in all nutrients that are essential for our body. It is high in proteins, calcium, carbs, fats, minerals, and vitamins. It is an excellent protein source that provides both casein and whey proteins. It can help you add muscle mass to your body. Try drinking two glasses of milk per day with a meal or before or after a workout. 

2: Rice 

Rice is one of the convenient and cheap sources of carbohydrates that is essential to gain weight. Rice is also a calorie-dense food that means you can obtain carbs and calories from a single serving. One cup of rice provides about 200 calories that contribute to gain weight. 

You can have rice with different curries and veggies that are high in proteins. It is the easiest way to add taste, calories, and a protein boost.


3: Dried fruits

Consuming dried fruits can be beneficial for weight gain. This super-food contains various antioxidants, proteins, calories, and micronutrients. All types of dried fruit have a naturally high sugar content that makes them great for gaining weight. You can eat them raw or roasted as well as can add them in yoghurt, smoothie. A daily handful of dried fruits such as almonds, walnuts, and cashew are best for weight gain. 

4: Homemade protein smoothies 

Homemade smoothies are much healthier than ready-made protein supplements. A shake is most effective at helping to build muscle if drunk shortly after a workout. They are also rich in flavour and taste. Here are some examples of homemade smoothies that can help gain weight quickly, such as chocolate banana nut shake, vanilla berry shake, chocolate hazelnut shake, and super green shake.

5: Red meat 

Red meat is a rich source of protein that helps to build your muscles and increase your weight. It contains leucine and creatine, nutrients that play a significant role in boosting muscle mass. Steak and other red meats contain both protein and fat, which promote weight gain. Both fatty and lean muscles provide proteins that can help you to gain weight. One of the best sources is fat beef dishes – brisket.

6: Fatty and oily fish 

Fatty fish such as salmon is rich in essential fatty acids and proteins. They help to gain weight and also boost your immunity. Omega-3 present in these fishes is the best source that is significant for weight gain. You can prepare different dishes from salmon like steamed fish, fried fish, and smoked salmon. 

7: Potatoes and starch 

Starch foods such as potatoes and corn are a famous, tasty option for quick weight gain. It is a cost-effective option that provides extra calories for your body. This food contains carbs and calories that increase muscle glycogen stores. Many of these starchy foods have carb sources that also provide essential nutrients and fibre, as well as resistant starch, which can help nourish your gut bacteria.

8: Whole grain bread 

The simple whole grain bread is a good source of carbs that will increase your weight. They can be a well-balanced meal when prepared with protein sources like eggs, meat, and cheese. The live, good bacteria in sourdough feed bacteria in the gut that can strengthen your immune system.


9: Avocados

Avocados are an excellent source of fats, antioxidants, vitamins, and fibres. You can eat avocado in your main meal, sandwiches, and other dishes that are essential for weight gain.

10: Whole eggs 

Whole eggs are the best option for your dietician for weight gain as they are full of proteins, calcium, and healthy fats. They are muscle building food that is available easily. It is necessary to eat the whole egg, its egg yolk is very beneficial. 

There are many foods and supplements available that help you to gain weight. But, instead of trying to gorge yourself with masses of sweet or fatty foods, choose high-calorie foods that provide energy and build muscle mass without all of the unhealthy fats that can cause you harm.

11: Healthy fats and oils  

Healthy oils are extremely calorie dense and do not come with the downsides of other unhealthy oils. You can add these oils to salad dressing, as a seasoning base or for cooking. Avocado oil, Extra Virgin Olive oil and Coconut oil are three healthy oils that can help increase your calorie intake. Another method to incorporate healthy oil into your diet is to add one of these oils with a small amount of butter to your morning coffee. It’s trendy, yummy and healthy! 

Read more about: 10 Health Benefits of Giloy – The Ultimate Immunity Booster

Suggested diet plan for weight gain

The possibility of gaining weight overnight is one of the biggest hoaxes and myths. A healthy, consistent diet, strength training and a set of different weight gain exercises all play their part in helping you gain weight. Out of this, diet and food have an important role. The following can be maintained for your weight gain diet:

Breakfast: Include food items like whole-grain bread slices with peanut butter and honey; a glass of milkshake; a medium-sized seasonal fruit; milk with chia seeds and oats; poached eggs; avocado toast. Avoid caffeine products like tea or strong coffee.

Lunch: You can add food items like chicken pasta made with leafy green vegetables, feta cheese, olive oil, tomato and avocado; egg, cheese and salad wraps; lentil, vegetable and barley soup; chicken and noodle stir fry; a bowl of rice with vegetables and fish; chicken rice with corn; chapati, chicken curry and a bowl of yoghurt.


Dinner: You can add your choice of rice/chapati as preferred and have it with fish, chicken, vegetables. A bowl of chicken soup with corn may also be added.  

Snacks: Dried fruits have a great potential in helping gain weight. A handful of almonds, cashews or walnuts every day may be a healthy snacking option. Seeds like sunflower seeds can be enjoyed as well. Whole-grain crackers with hummus dip serve as a great snack option.


There are many foods and supplements available that help you to gain weight. But, instead of trying to gorge yourself with masses of sweet or fatty foods, choose high-calorie foods that provide energy and build muscle mass without all of the unhealthy fats that can cause you harm. Regular, age-appropriate exercise along with a healthy and calorie-rich diet is the best way to put on weight in a healthy manner. Avoid snacking between meals, ensure that you’re always hydrated and stick to your healthy, nutritious diet only. You’ll need a little perseverance but gaining weight is not a sprint, it takes patience and the results will be worth the wait. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can fruits be a part of a weight gain diet?

Yes, fruits can be a part of a weight gain diet as they provide natural sugars, vitamins and minerals. High-calorie fruits like bananas, avocados and mangoes can contribute to healthy weight gain. Pairing fruits with other calorie-dense foods can create nutritious and calorie-rich meals.

Are nuts beneficial for weight gain?

Yes, nuts are beneficial for weight gain as they are calorie-dense and packed with healthy fats, protein and fibre. Incorporating nuts into your diet can provide an easy and nutritious way to increase daily calorie intake.

How can I add healthy fats to my diet for weight gain?

Adding healthy fats to your diet for weight gain can be done by incorporating foods like avocados, nuts, seeds, olive oil, coconut oil and fatty fish into your meals. These sources of healthy fats not only increase calorie intake but also offer numerous health benefits.

Can dairy products aid in healthy weight gain?

Yes, dairy products can aid in healthy weight gain. Full-fat dairy options like whole milk, yogurt and cheese are rich in calories, protein and calcium, making them excellent choices for those looking to gain weight in a healthy manner.

Is it necessary to include protein-rich foods in a weight gain diet?

Yes, including protein-rich foods in a weight gain diet is essential as protein is crucial for muscle development and repair. Foods like lean meats, poultry, fish, eggs, beans, lentils and dairy products are excellent sources of protein.

Can smoothies be helpful for weight gain?

Yes, smoothies can be helpful for weight gain when prepared with calorie-dense ingredients. Incorporating fruits, nuts, seeds, yogurt, milk and protein powders into smoothies can make them nutritious and calorie-rich beverages.

Are whole grains good for weight gain?

Yes, whole grains are good for weight gain as they provide complex carbohydrates, fibre and essential nutrients. Foods like whole-grain bread, pasta, brown rice and quinoa can be excellent additions to a weight gain diet.

Can I gain weight healthily with plant-based foods?

Yes, you can gain weight healthily with plant-based foods by focusing on calorie-dense options like avocados, nuts, seeds, legumes, whole grains and plant-based protein sources like tofu and tempeh.

How can I incorporate more calories into my meals for weight gain?

You can incorporate more calories into your meals for weight gain by adding healthy fats, protein-rich foods and calorie-dense ingredients like nuts, seeds, avocados and dried fruits. Eating frequent, balanced meals and snacks throughout the day can also help increase calorie intake.

Disclaimer: The information included at this site is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional. Because of unique individual needs, the reader should consult their physician to determine the appropriateness of the information for the reader’s situation.


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Way cool! Some extremely valid points! I appreciate you penning this post and the rest of the site is also very good.

Shreya Gupta

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Sudip Ghosh

Thank you for the information

Ashir Sahal

You are most welcome. Hope you found it useful.