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My Girlfriend Needs to gain weight now

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Old 12-01-2010, 09:18 PM   #1
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My Girlfriend Needs to gain weight now


Let me start by saying my girlfriend does not have an eating disorder that we know of. She is 5'4" tall and she weighs 105 pounds. She's skinny, really skinny. Lately her legs are sticks.

She does not try to look this way and wants to gain weight. She's been skinny all her life but it's not a self image thing or anything like that. That's just her frame.

She's a single mom with three children under 7 years old. So, she's busy, she's out of the house at 730am and cooking is not an option in the morning. She has lost more weight over the past three years since her divorce. Again, its more busy mom than trying not to gain weight.

Can someone give advice on how she can gain weight in a healthy manner? We don't want her to take any medication but rather find a diet specifically for people with this problem.

I know that stress is a part of her issue. Maybe not taking the time/wanting to eat or putting it off is part of the problem. But, she will do what she has to do if she has a specific plan to follow. At this point, I don't think a bacon egg and cheese at dunkin donuts and a sandwich at lunch is going to solve this.


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Old 12-01-2010, 10:26 PM   #2
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Re: My Girlfriend Needs to gain weight now

Some high calorie density healthy foods include fatty fish (but watch out for types of fish high in contaminants like mercury), avocados, and various kinds of nuts and nut butters. Dried fruit is also high calorie density, though if a high sugar intake is a problem for her (blood sugar, blood triglycerides, etc.), it may not be too great to eat a lot. Cheese is also high calorie density, but may not be great if blood LDL is too high. Being generous with olive oil based dressings on salads and such can also increase the calorie content of meals.

Note: "trail mix" type of foods often contain nuts and dried fruit, so they can be a quick high calorie snack. But make sure to check the ingredients to make sure that you can recognize everything in them (some have lots of weird artificial flavors and colors).

If she wants to ensure that some of the gain is muscle (highly desirable), including some strength training exercises (e.g. pushups, pullups, dips, squats, plank, etc.) and consuming foods with sufficient protein (like fatty fish in the list above) can help there.

Last edited by tjlhb; 12-01-2010 at 10:29 PM.

Old 12-07-2010, 07:25 PM   #3
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Re: My Girlfriend Needs to gain weight now

Does she have health issues related to her thinness (gets sick easily, no periods, no energy, etc...)? Has she been evaluated for a thyroid disorder?

To gain weight she should consume at least 2000 high quality calories per day. She should eat within an hour of waking up and every 2-3hrs after that. Eating six 300-350 calorie mini-meals per day is a good goal.

Some breakfast and/or mid-morning snack ideas are (about 300cals each):
  • high calorie/high protein bars (we like builder bars)
  • 2-3 hard-boiled eggs prepared in advance (peel them the night before and put them in a ziploc baggie so she can grab them and go)
  • yogurt with granola
  • toast with almond butter

Even if she has to get up a little bit earlier to accomplish it. If it's important she needs to make time...there's no quick-fix on the road to gaining weight

Some good lunch ideas (300-350cals each):
  • large grilled chicken salad with cheese and olive oil dressing
  • whole grain tortilla wrap with beans/cheese, tuna, chicken, etc...
  • beef and barley soup with a whole grain roll or biscuit
  • rice with pork and a side of broccoli

Afternoon snack ideas (250-300cals each):
  • protein shake
  • cottage cheese and baby carrots
  • hummus or cheese on whole grain crackers
  • trail mix (any combination of nuts and dried fruit)
  • fruit with nut butter (I like almond butter )

Dinner ideas (350-500cals each):
  • whole grain pasta with meat sauce and a side of steamed veggies
  • baked salmon with rice and a side of veggies
  • steak and potatoes with steamed veggies
  • whole grain tuna casserole
  • pizza with whole grain crust topped with lots of veggies

Bedtime snack ideas (250-300 cals each):
  • whole grain cereal with milk
  • oatmeal with buttered toast (add wheat germ, flax, and/or dried fruit to make it heartier)
  • protein shake and a piece of fruit

Anyway, those are just a few ideas My husband has a hard time maintaining his weight as does his sister who is about the same size as your girlfriend (5'4" and 100lbs...she has to work to maintain that...her usual weight is 95lbs ). My husband has to consume 3000-3500cals per day to gain's tough but it's worth it since he has more energy and doesn't get sick as easily

Very thoughtful of you to be thinking of her! She's sounds like a busy Mama...I hope she can slow down just a wee bit to take some time to care for herself...those kiddos need her to be healthy

Take Care!!

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