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Question
Posted by: Lee | 2009-04-23

How can I put on some weight?

I am 23 and I feel that I' m a little too thin, but not by choice! I eat till I' m so full and I eat junk too. I eat what I want. I know I am lucky and I' m not complaining about it and don' t want to be fat, I just want a little more flesh on these bones :0) What supplement or shake or anything can I take to achieve this? If I take mass builder and don' t exercise, will that work? Thanks. Lee

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Our expert says:
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Gaining weight is just as problematic as trying to lose it. Basically individuals who struggle to gain weight do not ingest sufficient energy for the high demands of their Basic metabolic rate and/or physical activity. DietDoc from this site has written some articles on this subject. For basic information click on 'Diet' at the top of this page and then on 'Diet Basics' and 'Weight gaining' and read the articles. Companies like Fresenius Kabi and Nestle, among others, make meal replacement supplements which you can buy at any chemist.

Phone Fresenius on (011) 545-0000, or the Nestle Consumer Services at 0860 09 6789 and ask about Nutritional Supplements to boost your energy intake. Basically you need to eat more food either by gradually increasing how much you eat at each meal, or by taking supplements IN ADDITION to your regular meals (not to replace meals), or by having more snacks between meals. If you use a meal supplement such as Fresubin, with or without fibre, at the rate of 200 ml 3x a day, then you should gain 1 kg per week.

Then finally, keep in mind that you must train properly to increase mass, and eating well is not enough on its own.

If your aim were to build muscle, the following guidelines will help you:
• Perform 6-10 reps at a high intensity - use a weight that you could lift 12 to 15 times
• Perform 3-4 sets
• Rest 30-60 seconds between reps
• Train each muscle group at least once or twice a week
• Allow 48 hours rest between each muscle’s workout

If your aim were to tone muscle, the following guidelines will help you:
• Perform 10-15 reps but at a much lower intensity - use a weight that would allow you to lift the weight at least 25 times.
• Perform 4-6 sets
• Rest 30-60 seconds between reps
• Train each muscle group at least once or twice a week
• Allow 48 hours rest between each muscle’s workout

If you were to exercise three times a week, you will increase your toning but to a much lesser extent compare to training 4-6 times per week. The volume of your training is much more important than the intensity of your training, bearing in mind your aim is to build muscle.

Your improvement will depend on your initial fitness level. The greatest improvement will be during the first few weeks of your training due to the adaptations of your muscles. A training program is individualized and every person will progress differently. It is hard to tell exactly when you will see changes, but generally after two weeks you will feel stronger and after six weeks you will be able to see an improvement.

http://www.health24.com/dietnfood/Diet_basics/15-1168-1175.asp

It contains good advice, explanations and assistance with the different types of exercises for different body parts, and even programmes for different types of people. Well worth a look

Regards

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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