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How can I put ON weight healthily?

(22 Posts)
Lizita Tue 26-Jul-05 11:53:34

Hiya. I'm skinny, underweight, yet I eat a lot more than most of my friends do. I think I've lost weight since having dd (2 years ago) prob because I have less opportunity to eat as much, and I eat more healthily too, to encourage my dd to! Plus I get a lot more exercise... (I'm a SAHM). To give you an idea, what I generally eat is cereal or porridge for breakfast, a sandwich mid-morning, lunch (anything from pasta, rice, omelette, etc etc), a snack mid afternoon (crisps or biscuits or crackers etc), tea (as per lunch) and then nibbles in the evenings, again sandwiches or crisps or chocolate, ....usually I'm hungry enough to eat another full meal but too tired to cook anything.
I really want to put ON the weight cos i'm too skinny but I don't want to start stuffing myself full of unhealthy stuff again (I used to eat a lot more crisps, chocolate, pain au chocolat (yum!), ice cream, etc etc) partly cos of dd and partly cos I'm sure i'd just be clogging my arteries and setting myself up for heart trouble later in life, even though i don't have a weight problem.
Any tips on what I should do?

albert Tue 26-Jul-05 11:58:27

Oh, I saw an article on this in last weeks 'New' magazine maybe you can get hold of a copy. Sorry I've thrown mine away.

tiffini Tue 26-Jul-05 11:59:41

Lots of Carbs are supposed to help.

I am more than willing to swap bodies with you if you like

WigWamBam Tue 26-Jul-05 12:16:36

Have a look at this

Branster Tue 26-Jul-05 12:16:50

do you eat enough protein though to build up muscle fiber?
as you say, keep away from fats to keep your heart healthy, but take any opportunity to use healthy oils (olive, linseed etc) with salads for example. go for full fat option when choosing milk, yoghurt, froige frais etc.

it looks like you eat a lot of carbs (bread, cereals etc), maybe these fill you up but not much actual nutrition?

i came accross some advice re putting on weight once on a website but i cannot rememebr which one it was. i believe it was a link from NHS maybe, it was to do with regaining weight after suffering from cancer and it did stipulate adding little bits of fattening substances in your daily diet (i.e a small knob of butter when cooking rice etc).

would it be possible you have an tyroid problem at all? get it checked with your GP for a blood sample.

it may well be this is your normal weight though.
if you feel energetic all day long and your sking is healthy and you do not suffer from anything (i.e. stomach cramps, problems when going to the loo etc), you might just be normal!

alternatively, try and fit in some muscle building exercises for a better body shape, but make sure you eat enough to compensate for loss of energy.

there are some 'wieght gain' type products you can find in health food shops. although i would not reccommend you using them as prescribed on the pack, i would suggest you make yourself one of those drinks (no more than 250ml) in the days whene your food intake is not that good because you were too busy to eat for example. these drinks contain incredible amounts of everything and maybe overdosing on vitamins, minerals and other stuff is not a good idea.

PeachyClair Tue 26-Jul-05 13:18:28

Nuts, oily fish, dark chocolate, dairy products within reason, peanut butter...

I work on the (probably completely whacko) theory that we have evolved to eat certain foods, so naturally those are the ones we need and are most nutritious. Nuts, olive oil, beans, plants, some meat, fish, fruit, seeds- all are good. Then you varya ccording to what you need. So, I need to lose 1.5 stone so i concentrate on the veg etc., you need to gain so go for the oily fish, nits, seeds, olive oil side of it...

As I said, I am probably a bit whacko on this and I insist on a full disclaimer, but have noticed the No Count WeightWatchers menu I am following seems to have some similar appliance if not rationale.

Lizita Tue 26-Jul-05 17:16:06

Hi. Well, after reading the article WWB provided the link for, I created a table of portions of veg, fruit, carbs, meat (which inc pulses, fish, chicken, eggs), dairy & high fat foods and marked down the amount of portions for the past week I have had each day. (sposed to have 5 portions fruit & veg, 2 portions dairy meat, carbs with each meal). It seems I consistently overdo every day the carbs, dairy & meat sections (though not all big portions, eg chicken salad sarnie = 1 veg, 1 carb, 1 meat) but not enough fruit & veg esp fruit! But i don't get it, that's just the basis of a healthy diet, shouldn't even people trying to lose weight try to stick to that? And how would cutting down my carbs, dairy & meat & increasing fruit & veg help me gain weight?? (ANd it recommends avoiding full fat dairy stuff!) I'm confused....

Branster - energy levels depend on how busy I've been/how late I've gone to bed so i think i'm pretty normal there. Skin isn't so good but then i don't eat enough fruit & veg!! (Actually as I eat pretty much what my dd eats this is a bit worrying...)

Fran1 Tue 26-Jul-05 17:17:10

Try and go on a diet - normally works for me

Sorry no help am i!

moozoboozo Tue 26-Jul-05 17:17:45

I'll happily give you my excess pounds.

lovecloud Tue 26-Jul-05 17:32:24


I have a few friends in your situation, some people just dont understand and constantly say "you're lucky, why complain... then eat more etc"

On "This Morning" i heard you should eat:

Breakfast: Peanunt butter on two pieces of toast and bowl of cereal

Lunch: Jacket potatoe with cheese and beans

Dinner: Usual - meat and two veg.

But just after each meal drink a slim fast shake as people who diet would normally replace a meal with the drink but you need to drink it directly after eating each meal, it kind of doubles your calories intake. (check if using with a mutlivitamin as they contain lots of vitamins)
You need to drink it straight after before you feel filled up.

Also snack on lots of nuts and seeds, walnuts, pumkin seeds etc...

Good luck

Lizita Tue 26-Jul-05 19:46:03

Thanks. No people don't understand. But recently it's easy to be paranoid being skinny as well as big, you only have to read Heat etc. Plus what bugs me is that I've recently heard that acquaintances are "concerned" about me and think I'm anorexic or something which i totally am not ! I've never really thought about what I eat until i had dd and wanted her to have a healthy diet. I've always been skinny and always hated it. weird world huh

compo Tue 26-Jul-05 19:48:36

I know it's not quite the same but my sister was underweight as a teenager. The doctor's advice was to eat a slice of cake before bed. You could try fruit cake, malt loaf or carrot cake so it's not too unhealthy.

SaintGeorge Tue 26-Jul-05 20:06:23

You have my sympathy. I have always been skinny and struggle to put weight on (5' 4", currently 7 stone) - though if I am ill it is only too easy to lose it

I did have spells of not eating some time ago due to depression but luckily I have got over that now. Strangely, it is now that I am eating more that people have started questioning my eating habits and suggesting that I have an eating disorder. The assumption is that I am bulimic because they see me eating big meals but don't see me gaining weight.

My current eating plan:

Breakfast - cereal, juice, toast.

Mid-morning - cheese and crackers

Lunch - baked potato with baked beans and cheese or tuna or chicken and mushrooms

Mid afternoon - sandwiches, usually ham,chicken or cheese with salad. Fruit. Twice a week I have oily fish like tuna or mackeral.

Dinner - Casseroles, meat & veg, pasta. I always bulk out with bread and stuff like side salads when it suits the meal.

I snack constantly on stuff like raw carrots, cheese, grapes etc.

Result - weight gain of 4lb in 2 months. Hmm, my target weight of 8 stone might take awhile

Branster Tue 26-Jul-05 21:23:04

What great advice from everyone here!

Don't get too stressed about this whole issue though. I think it would take longer for a naturally skinni person to put on weight than for a naturally overweight person to loose weight, mainly n=because lots of energy is consumed through activities (daily routines as well as physical exercise).

One other thing you could try is preparing a mixture of honey, bees pollen (powder) and ground nuts (i.e. walnuts). Keep it in a jar and take a couple od teaspoons a day. It is high in callories but it also boosts your immune system so can't be bad for you. Incredibly sweet though so you'll have to brush your teeth afterwards.

If you feel your skin is not as good as it should be, try and drink more plain water throughout the day. Coffee is diurethic so limit consumption. And start using Eve Loom!!!

If you smoke, this may also reduce the chances of putting on weight, especially if you are of a slim built already.

I think it is more important that you are healthy and energetic. Weight comes secondary. Good skin is also an indication of a good diet IMHO.

Good luck!

PS If all else fail I suggest you drink loads of beer, eat takeaways only and aim to finish 1/2 jar of peanut butter per day!

Lizita Wed 27-Jul-05 10:51:07

lol branster. On a serious note though, to friends who want to lose weight but I disagree that they're "fat" I always want to say weight doesn't matter, health is paramount, but can't apply that to myself for some reason! Btw I drink lots of water already.
Good to read i'm not the only one. Same here re when i'm ill. I lose weight easily when i'm ill, but take longer to gain it!
You eat similarly to me SaintGeorge. When i got pregnant my work mates were like "What're you gonna be like now, you eat so much already!"

Well my plan is: increase fruit & veg, and perhaps decrease carbs in meals so that i eat more other stuff (what someone said about filling myself up too quickly makes sense). I do need to eat more in the evenings I think, (healthily not just chocolate!)- i'm just too lazy!

SaintGeorge Wed 27-Jul-05 11:41:42

Try to make your main meal the evening one and eat it late - I normally eat after 8 o'clock and often nearer 9. The complete opposite of the advice given to people trying to lose weight basically.

Try to pre-cook a lot of things like casseroles and freeze them (I use those foil take-away tray things) then when you want a meal late but are tired, they take no time at all in the oven with no effort on your part.

Couldn't tell I was pregnant unless I turned sideways - then I looked like I'd swallowed a water melon

Lizita Wed 27-Jul-05 13:46:02

Good idea re freezing SaintGeorge, already do it for some of dd's meals.... part of my problem is i put so much energy into sorting her out that i usually forget about myself! My friend has her once a week (finishing soon ) and when that day comes i'm like, what'm i gonna eat, there's no food in!! I eat what she eats at her mealtimes, I don't even need to freeze, i could just make double quantities and eat the rest in the evening...

JiminyCricket Wed 27-Jul-05 14:25:49

You could buy fortisip supplement drinks from the chemist to add calories in. The advantage of these (although they taste a bit yucky) is that once you've gained the weight you can just eliminate them and carry on with your normal diet (assuming this is maintaining your weight and not causing it to drop). Or for breakfast maybe add in two slices of toast (with spread/peanut butter) and some fruit juice as well as the cereal. Some snacks have more calories (and nutrition than others) - try to aim for mid-morning, afternoon and evening snacks of as close to 300 calories as possible (NB most chocolate bars are not this much and a bag of crisps is half this, although higher fat content) e.g. toasted bagel & spread, flapjack, muffin, toasted teacake - large - with spread, 75g fruit and nut mix, 50g nuts, muller fruit corner yoghurts, 4 x large biscuits. It sometimes takes quite a push to start to shift your weight if its got used to being in a certain place, and as much as when someone goes on a diet they have to cut out more than they expect to start losing, you'll probably have to add in more than feels comfortable to start gaining. Hope it goes well for you, x

Branster Wed 27-Jul-05 21:18:23

went to buy my monthly nuts, seeds, dried fruit from the ehalth food shop today and noticed the labels for most nuts & seeds say over 500 calories/100g, which is an awful lot so good idea from who was suggesting here to try and eat a fair bit of those. oh, you'll be glowing with good health soon too!!!

dips usually have at least 300 calories/100g (i.e hummus) if i'm not mistaken.

have also checked the dark chocolate as SG suggested, that's over 500calories/100g too.

PeachyClair Thu 28-Jul-05 20:08:19

My Dh has the same problem has you, can never work out why he is so thin when he lives off a diret of fatty food and chocolate. From an outside view I can see that that he is like a human (well sort of!!) dynamo and often as not skips meals completely without even noticing. perhaps you copuld ask DP if you have one, or someone close, for their honest opinion on why you are so thin?

there is also a genetic factor though: DS 1 and 3 are both underweight, ds3 has been right through paeds, and all they can say ids that it is genetic (MIL weighs 6 stone) and they have to ive with it.

PeachyClair Thu 28-Jul-05 20:10:02

Just read my first posting on this thread where I advised you to go for the nits- LOL! As far as I am aware they're not particularly filling

Dust anyone?

Lizita Thu 28-Jul-05 22:09:57

That would be interesting, to find out why other people think I'm thin. But as far as I'm aware most of my friends think I eat loads and don't understand it either!

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