There are a number of causes that one might have to achieve weight together with genetics and sure medical situations comparable to fats malabsorption, most cancers remedy, being pregnant and to enhance athletic efficiency. Whereas meals excessive in saturated fats will be the first issues that come to thoughts, there are a variety of wholesome choices, full of protein and wholesome fat that may assist you put weight on. Snacking in between meals will be a good way to begin.

“As you improve your calorie consumption, attempt to deal with nutrient-dense high-calorie selections. You possibly can nonetheless prioritize wholesome meals whereas gaining weight as a substitute of falling again on choices which can be laden with added sugar and extreme sodium,” says registered dietitian Stefani Sassos, director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Diet Lab. She provides, “Fats has extra energy per gram than protein or carbohydrates, that means you don’t must eat as a lot from a amount standpoint to get the identical quantity of energy. Nutritious fat so as to add to your weight loss program to help wholesome weight achieve embody olive oil, full-fat yogurt and milk, avocado, nut butters and fatty fish.”

Many athletes must devour an elevated variety of energy per day to keep up and/or achieve weight and muscle mass because of the excessive quantity of energy burned throughout their sport and coaching. Our staff of registered dietitians within the Good Housekeeping Diet Lab consulted with collegiate {and professional} athletes on a few of their favourite snacks for this story.

Extra From Good Housekeeping play icon The triangle icon that signifies to play

Very like weight reduction, weight achieve needs to be a gradual course of. Earlier than implementing any modifications to your weight loss program, particularly within the case of particular medical wants for weight achieve, we suggest consulting together with your healthcare supplier first. Under is our record of our high 10 high-calorie snack picks that can assist you obtain your weight objectives.

Nuts, Seeds and Nut/Seed Butter

istetiana // Getty Photos

Nuts and seeds are loaded with wholesome monounsaturated fat along with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, protein, antioxidants, nutritional vitamins and minerals. Analysis means that elevated consumption of nuts and seeds is related to a decreased danger of heart problems. Whereas most nuts and seeds are calorically dense, macadamia nuts and pecans include the best variety of energy with roughly 200 energy per ounce. (Evaluate that to 164 energy per ounce in almonds.)

A handful of nuts is the best snack of all, or combine and match your favourite nuts and seeds with dried fruit to create a DIY path combine. Nut or seed butter (almond butter, cashew butter, sunflower butter, and many others.) is nice on toast or a bagel, with an apple, stuffed into dates or added to full-fat Greek yogurt.

Take observe: Some manufacturers include a variety of added sugar and sodium. We suggest on the lookout for unsalted or calmly salted nuts and seeds, and when buying nut and seed butters, search for manufacturers that do not have added sugar, sodium, hydrogenated oils or pointless components.

RELATED: 6 of the Finest Forms of Nuts You Can Eat

Full-Fats Greek Yogurt

Arx0nt // Getty Photos

Full-fat Greek-style strained yogurt is loaded with protein, probiotics and calcium, and it additionally incorporates Vitamin B12. In comparison with low-fat or skim milk yogurt, full-fat Greek yogurt is way increased in energy (220 energy vs. 90 energy) and fats (11 grams vs. 0 grams) which helps to make it a nutrient-dense deal with. It does include some saturated fats so keep watch over that quantity. We suggest limiting saturated fats to round 3 grams per meal. Consuming greater than the beneficial each day restrict of saturated fats (about 13 grams on a 2,000-calorie weight loss program) can increase LDL ldl cholesterol, growing your danger of coronary heart illness and stroke.

Greek yogurt is tremendous versatile and will be loved in candy or savory high-calorie snacks. Understand that flavored and fruit-added choices can include a variety of added sugars, so search for manufacturers that hold it to a minimal. As a scrumptious nutrient-dense snack thought, strive mixing full-fat Greek yogurt with oats, nut butter, nuts, coconut flakes and chia seeds to make in a single day oats. High it off with recent or dried fruit when able to eat.

Path Combine

lacaosa // Getty Photos

Dried fruit incorporates extra extremely concentrated energy in a decrease quantity than recent fruit. Mix dried fruit with blended nuts — remembering that macadamia and pecans are the best in energy at round 200 energy per ounce — and throw in some darkish chocolate items, coconut flakes and banana chips and you’ve got created a high-calorie snack. Munch on this in between meals to up your general caloric consumption or use it as a topping for full-fat Greek yogurt or add to oatmeal.

Protein Dietary supplements

wmaster890 // Getty Photos

There are such a lot of nice protein powders available on the market, and a variety of them are geared towards weight achieve as a result of they could be a fast and simple automobile for including energy. These powders are additionally excessive in protein and carbohydrates and are thought of a favourite approach to increase caloric consumption, particularly amongst athletes.

Protein powders are labeled as dietary dietary supplements and are topic to FDA oversight, though the business is poorly regulated general. We suggest on the lookout for manufacturers that conduct third-party testing by credible establishments comparable to USP, NSF, Client Lab, Labdoor, Knowledgeable Alternative and Knowledgeable Sport to make sure high quality requirements.

For a nutrient-dense smoothie thought, mix full-fat chocolate milk with a banana, 2 tablespoons peanut butter (or nut butter of selection) and protein powder to create a protein-rich, high-calorie snack. You may as well throw in some avocado or full-fat Greek yogurt for added energy.

GET THE RECIPE: Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

Full-Fats Cottage Cheese

Arx0nt // Getty Photos

What as soon as was relegated to the “weight loss program” part of diner menus, cottage cheese has rapidly turn out to be a trending social media star resulting from its versatility, wealthy texture and adaptable calorie content material. Obtainable in lots of variations from non-fat and low-fat to complete milk and double cream, it’s a nice protein supply that may be a fast and simple on-the-go candy or savory snack. It is also wealthy in calcium and probiotics. (We suggest on the lookout for manufacturers that state the precise probiotic pressure.)

As with the opposite full-fat dairy snacks on this record, the upper the general milk fats share, the upper the saturated fats content material. Cottage cheese will also be excessive in sodium, so search for manufacturers that state “low sodium” or “decreased sodium” on the label.

Fatty Fish


Fatty fish, together with salmon, mackerel, sardines, anchovies and bluefin tuna, include increased quantities of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and are ceaselessly related to many well being advantages. Fish is a wealthy supply of protein, and up to date research point out that consuming fish twice weekly can decrease the chance of heart problems and dying amongst high-risk people. One other current evaluation of a number of research discovered a decreased danger of dementia with fish consumption.

Straightforward methods to include fatty fish for weight achieve embody including lox to your bagel and cream cheese or including it as a topping on avocado toast. One other favourite is tuna salad wraps. Select tuna packed in olive oil and increase the general energy by including mayo, avocado, turkey bacon and an egg. Pair it with a ranch-style dressing for added taste and energy.

At a minimal, the Dietary Pointers for People suggest consuming not less than 8 ounces of fish per week on a 2,000-calorie weight loss program and suggest those that are pregnant devour 8 to 12 ounces per week of lower-mercury fish.

RELATED: The 15 Healthiest Fish to Eat


istetiana // Getty Photos

Avocados could be a weight-gainer’s greatest buddy. They’re wealthy in unsaturated fat, containing each mono- and poly-unsaturated fat, each of that are helpful for coronary heart and metabolic well being. They could additionally assist to decrease ranges of LDL (dangerous) ldl cholesterol in accordance with analysis. Along with being a nutrient-dense snack, avocados are a very good supply of potassium, containing 345mg in half a cup. Athletes we spoke with who had been working to bulk up reported consuming one to 2 avocados, plain with a sprinkle of salt and recent lime juice as a day snack.

Avocado toast has additionally turn out to be an incredible automobile for reinforcing caloric consumption, and it’s simple to arrange. Wealthy in omega-3 fatty acids, drizzle it with olive or avocado oil or high with smoked salmon for much more energy. Avocados will also be loved as guacamole or in chocolate avocado mousse.

RELATED: 53 Methods to Use Avocado


OatmealStories // Getty Photos

Oats are an entire grain loaded with well being advantages together with enhancing intestine micro organism resulting from containing the prebiotic beta-glucan, a soluble fiber. They’ve additionally been linked with lowering LDL (dangerous) levels of cholesterol which might help to cut back the chance for heart problems. Oats additionally include the phytochemical avenanthramide which will assist to guard the center and forestall colon most cancers, though extra analysis is required.

Oats are thought of a favourite among the many athletes we consulted with as a result of they could be a tasty automobile for different high-calorie meals comparable to nuts and nut butters, granola, dried fruit, darkish chocolate and full-fat yogurt. We suggest sticking with unrefined and complete oats together with rolled oats, metal reduce and oat groats as these are additionally more practical at lowering levels of cholesterol.

One among our favourite high-calorie snacks is in a single day oats. Oats, nut butter, chia seeds and full-fat Greek yogurt come collectively and switch this right into a scrumptious approach to begin the day. End it off with high-calorie toppings comparable to nuts, seeds, banana chips and/or coconut flakes.


Luisella Sem / EyeEm // Getty Photos

Granola is usually made up of a number of elements already talked about on this record like dried fruit, nuts, seeds and rolled oats. Add to that maple or brown rice syrup, olive or coconut oils and sometimescoconut flakes, darkish chocolate and banana chips and you have a variety of energy inside a small portion measurement. In accordance with the USDA diet information, a half cup can include 300 energy, with many manufacturers containing virtually double that.

It’s a good on-the-go choice as a result of you may eat it straight out of the bag. Or combine it together with your favourite milk of selection, full-fat Greek yogurt or add it as a topping to a smoothie bowl. Many manufacturers will be excessive in added sugars and saturated fats so search for ones that include complete grains, complete oats, dried actual fruit, darkish chocolate, nuts and seeds over a variety of added refined sugars and preservatives. Do-it-yourself granola may very well be your greatest guess!


Amarita // Getty Photos

Along with being calorically dense, eggs include vitamin D which is tough to get from meals. They’re additionally wealthy in choline which in accordance with the American Coronary heart Affiliation, might help with fetal mind growth together with metabolism and liver operate.

Many athletes we spoke with reported beginning the time without work with eggs for breakfast as a simple approach to get a very good quantity of protein and wholesome fat, and you may eat a variety of them with out feeling full. Eggs additionally pair simply with different calorically dense meals comparable to avocado, cheese, cream cheese and typical morning carbohydrates comparable to bagels, waffles and toast.

Some eggy snack concepts embody egg salad sandwiches and deviled eggs which may each be ready with mayonnaise, full-fat Greek yogurt or hummus to create a high-calorie savory deal with.

Methods for wholesome weight achieve

In terms of gaining weight, the straightforward reality is that you must add extra energy day-after-day. This needs to be executed in a considerate method to achieve weight slowly and steadily. Be strategic and comply with these 4 strategies:

✔️ Embody smoothies and shakes: Ingesting drinks together with your meals could make you are feeling full, so devour high-calorie drinks comparable to smoothies or meal alternative shakes in between meals to keep away from filling up.

✔️ Eat extra usually: As a substitute of consuming two to 3 meals a day, strive smaller extra frequent meals each few hours. Smaller meals will be simpler to digest leaving you feeling much less full and capable of eat once more sooner.

✔️ Add wholesome fat: Add dips, sauces and nut butter to your snacks to extend your energy. Drizzle olive oil on savory snacks comparable to hummus, full-fat Greek yogurt dips, baked potatoes, soups, fish and eggs. Add nut butters to smoothies, Greek yogurt and oatmeal and add as a topping to waffles and pancakes.

✔️ Keep away from low-fat merchandise: Keep away from merchandise which can be marketed as weight loss program, mild, low-fat or containing fewer energy. As a substitute search for merchandise which can be made with full fats, complete milk, olive oil and different nutrient-dense elements.

The underside line

Weight achieve will be achieved by a wholesome and nutritious weight loss program. We suggest being strategic about your consuming plan, consuming calorically dense meals usually however spaced out all through the day.

Simply keep in mind to avoid extremely processed meals excessive in sugar and sodium. With any new weight loss program or change to your healthcare routine we suggest working with a registered dietitian or healthcare supplier to find out first if weight achieve is indicated for you, and the way a lot weight achieve is wholesome for you and your particular person wants. We additionally suggest working together with your healthcare supplier to plan a plan that’s sustainable for you and means that you can achieve weight inside a wholesome time-frame.