While most people want to prevent weight gain, there are some who want to put weight on. The key to gaining weight is to stick to a nutritious diet and eat more calories. Rather than eating high-sugar, high-fat foods to pack on the pounds, opt for energy-dense foods that are high in calories and nutrient-rich. That way, you'll achieve your goal of gaining weight in two weeks without sacrificing your health.
Increase your caloric intake. One pound of body weight is equal to 3,500 calories. That means, to gain 2 pounds in two weeks, you need to increase your daily caloric intake by 500 calories.
Eat more often. It's hard to take in enough calories when you limit yourself to three meals a day. Eat three to four meals a day, plus three to four substantial snacks.
Snack often. Keep nuts, dried fruit, containers of yogurt and cottage cheese and protein-rich smoothie ingredients on hand.
Increase portion size. At each meal, eat more than you normally would. Have an extra serving of lean chicken breast, another slice of whole-grain bread or an extra serving of your morning oatmeal.
Choose nutritious, energy-dense foods. Energy-density is a measure of how may calories a food has per gram or other measurement. The more calories it has, the more energy dense it is. With 9 calories per gram, fat is the most energy-dense food. But not all fats are equal. Choose heart-healthy unsaturated fats such as olive and canola oil, rather than saturated fats such as butter. Nuts and nut butters and full-fat dairy are other energy-dense foods. To increase the energy-density of your meal, drizzle olive oil over lightly steamed green beans, blend cashews into a smoothie, dip apple slices in nut butter and drink a glass of whole milk with each meal.
- It's important to continue to exercise while you attempt to gain weight. Strength training will ensure that the extra calories you're taking in become muscle, not fat. A few sessions of moderate cardiovascular exercise each week will keep your heart and lungs healthy.
- Consult your doctor before beginning a weight-gain diet plan.
Jody Braverman is a professional writer and editor based in Atlanta. She studied creative writing at the American University of Paris and received a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Maryland. She also received personal trainer certification from NASM and her 200-hour yoga teacher certification from YogaWorks.