Subscribe to our Newsletter:
Healthy Diet Plans >>  Health Issues and Diet >>  Thinness >>  Diet

Underweight Diet and Nutrition

In today’s world of health and fitness, most men and women think it is very important to have a good body shape. Not only do slim and fit people feel healthier, they are also more confident about their looks and bodies, which works wonders for their self-esteem. Hence, it will not be wrong to state that people who are at a healthy weight are not just fit physically, but emotionally too. Unfortunately, though people are getting more aware of the benefits of being slim, there are many who take their efforts of weight loss too far and actually end up being underweight, only because they want to be “thin”. Of course, there are many people who are naturally thin and weight less than what they should, in spite of eating a normal, or perhaps even a high calorie diet.
However, there are several health problems that have been associated with being underweight, some of which include low immunity, anemia, fatigue, weakness, breathing difficulties, osteoporosis, the tendency to bruise quickly, slow recovery from illnesses, complications during surgeries and of course malnutrition. Underweight women may also suffer from fertility problems. At times, people who are underweight are more prone to health conditions such as Inflammatory Bowel Diseases (IBD), tuberculosis, cancer and eating disorders. Therefore, men and women who are aware of the problems faced by underweight people are now switching over to a healthy underweight diet plan, which can help them reach their “ideal” weight at a faster rate.

Most people believe that skinny people can eat just about anything they want to, without having to worry about their health; however, this is not true at all. While an underweight diet chart should contain high amounts of calorie-dense foods, it is important to ensure that these calories come from healthy sources. Contrary to what many people believe, a diet for underweight people is not just one that contains high amounts of fried food, junk, sweets and other fatty foods. While underweight people may not have to worry about obesity related problems, they too can suffer from diabetes, heart diseases and strokes, if their diet only consists of unhealthy fats, calories, carbs and so on. Therefore, a diet for underweight people should be carefully designed, after getting underweight diet tips from nutritionists and health care providers.

There are several factors that determine an individual’s weight such as age, gender and levels of physical activity. For example, weight gain diet plan for men will be quite different from a weight gain diet plan for women, mainly due to the fact that men have a lower propensity towards weight gain and perhaps even have a higher metabolism. Therefore, the daily caloric intake for a men’s diet is bound to be much higher, as compared to the caloric intake in a weight gain diet for women. Moreover, when it comes to weight gain, most of the men are interested in building the muscles and hence should consume higher amounts of protein. Most women, on the other hand, are interested in gaining the right curves, instead of fat or even muscle mass. Hence, the underweight diet health tips for people of both genders are bound to be different.

Similarly, since children who are very energetic and active have a high metabolism, the foods allowed in an underweight children diet, may be denser in calories, as compared to an adults diet. However, since kids today too, are prone to digestive problems, allergies and food intolerances, a weight gain diet for kids should be designed with a lot of consideration.

There is a lot of information on underweight diet nutrition through various resources; however, it is best to seek underweight diet advice from a professional. This is because though people may want to gain weight, nobody wants to become fat. Therefore, the weight gain diet that people follow should be healthy, allowing people to gain just the right amount of weight and no more. Instead of using weight gain supplements or eating unhealthy and fattening food, people are advised to follow an underweight natural diet.

Underweight Foods

Most people believe that underweight people can eat just about anything, without facing any health risks, but nothing could be further than the truth. While health problems like obesity, heart diseases and strokes are more prevalent in overweight people, they can also affect those who are thin, but follow a diet that is high in fat, calories, sugar and sodium. Hence, for people who are underweight foods to avoid still include fried food, junk, processed food, oil, sweets and so on. Fortunately, people can follow a healthy underweight food plan, which can help them gain weight slowly, but steadily, in a manner that does not have an adverse effect on their health. Given below is a weight gain foods list that should be incorporated in the diets of those who are quite underweight:
  • Dairy products: Full cream milk, cottage cheese, ice cream, cheese and yogurt
  • Fruits: Fruit juice, frozen fruit, fresh fruit and canned fruit
  • Grains: Pasta, bread, rice, oats, grits, pancakes, cereals & muffins
  • Meat: Pork, lamb, beef, turkey, chicken, fish and eggs 
  • Nuts: Cashew nuts, hazelnuts, peanuts, almonds, pistachios and walnuts
  • Oil: Butter, mayo, sandwich spreads, olive oil, salad dressing and margarine
  • Vegetables: Canned, frozen and fresh vegetables
People who are diabetic may also end up losing a considerable amount of weight, causing them to be underweight. Diabetics too should avoid being underweight as it could add to their health problems. However, the foods mentioned above may not be suitable for those with diabetes. Therefore, it is best for people to consult a doctor, to know about the right weight gain foods for diabetics.

Many women who breastfeed their babies also have a common complaint that their babies may be underweight. This is because babies who are exclusively breastfed are unlikely to gain a lot of weight, even though they are healthy. Hence, many women ask their doctors if they can put their babies on to supplements for weight gain. However, the best weight gain foods for babies who are exclusively breastfed are higher quantities of breast milk, combined with one or two feeds of formula milk in the day, if necessary. Similarly, there are quite a few weight gain foods for toddlers, like cereals, nuts and homemade fruit juices.

In people who are underweight food habits are as important as the food they choose to eat. Skipping meals should be strongly discouraged and metabolism boosters or appetite suppressants like nicotine and caffeine should be avoided. There are several underweight food supplements easily available at most health stores too, but it is important to consult a doctor before using any of them.
Submitted on January 16, 2014