Weight Gain
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my boyfriend needs to eat more, need advice

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i convinced my bf to join this site to help him to gain weight. i put in all his stats (m, 5'11", 129lbs moderate activity) and it was suggested that he consume 2400 calories a day. then i put in everything he has eaten in the 4 hours we got up, and its almost 1000 cal already. i really dont think 2400 is enough. his body fat is around 4% and he's been losing muscle since he stopped working out (15lbs~) he is a cyclist and we hike etc. he's also vegan so its hard for him to keep his weight up let alone gain weight... he also has anxiety which never helps. 

the reason i want him to join is he is starting to worry me. i can see his bones :( and several times a day he becomes so fatigued he lays down on the floor. he always says, oh im just messing around, or i just didnt get enough sleep.. but i know its because he doesnt eat enough. he also complains of hypoglycemia several times a day ("i need to get some sugar in me fast, im getting hypoglycemic") but i think he just doesnt have enough calories period.  one strange thing is when we drink alcohol seems to have a really huge effect on him, he only has 1 beer maybe 2 (and always has food with it), and it hits him hard and fast and then hes completely sober in half an hour. is his metabolism just really really fast? 

what would you suggest for his daily caloric intake? is 2400 enough or not? 

7 Replies (last)

Your boyfriend is very under weight and needs to be eating like 3200 t0 3500 cal a day at least, to have an appreciable gain weight. Moreover, if he can keep to daily cal of 3500 he will be gaining 1 to 2 pounds a week.


Is he naturally thin [without cycling or hiking or being vegan]?  Some people honestly do just have a fast metabolsm, which is what I have.   

At 5'11" and 129 lbs his bmi is about 18, and anything under 18.5 is usually considered underweight.  Usually a good median I've always heard is like 20 to 24.  So for him to be at a 20 BMI is like 145 pounds.

I would say maybe put in the food calculator approximately how much he used to eat in one day, then you could compare its total to what they suggest.  If he's already normally eating like 3,000 and still isn't gaining weight it should be increased.


2,400 might be what he needs for like being sedentary for the average person maybe? It also could depend on what you put in, maybe you put in a low weight and a long period of time for him to reach it.  But then again its not always right,  I weigh 101 and my goal on here is 130 by october 1st, and it tells me to eat 2,000 a day.  I've been eating 3,000 a day..and still not gaining, and I don't work, exercise or do anything.  Some people just have to eat ALOT of calories depending on their body.


I'd say maybe have him start at 2,500 a day [unless he's already eating more than that], then if thats not enough try 3,000, if thats not enough, go up to 3,500, if thats not enough go up to 4,000.   Since he's very active it could make it need to be a lot more than the normal average person.  For example,  Michael Phelps..since he's so athletic and trained so much for the olympics and everything...used to eat 12,000 calories a day.  Now your BF doesn't need that much..but it shows that the more you train and burn off calories.. the more calories you need.



Oh yeah, and I don't know if you've done this already or not, but theres lots of website out there that list which foods have the most calories in them and you could check it out to see what he likes the most.   I'd suggest like...bread, pasta, potatoes, rice, cereals, fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds.   I'd also suggest dried fruit, they have lots of calories.

I would honestly suggest that it's him that needs to be driving this.  He should be doing the research and the worrying, not you.  He should be looking after his own health, going to see the doctor about the hypoglycaemia... taking responsibility like a grown-up rather than shrugging it off.    It's good that you care but he should care more.....  It's almost impossible to get an overweight person to slim down or an underweight person to build up if they don't want to.  Doesn't sound like he thinks there's a problem.

it doesnt sound good. hes unnaturally underweight and 2400....thats nowhere near enough.


its not your job to mommy him, as gijane said. i think he should go to his doctor, if hes weak and needs to lie down hes likely very anaemic---common in  vegans. but its not normal for a should-be healthy young man to be so weak and fragile.....


is there even a remote possibility of an ED?..otherwise, anxiety and depression are closely linked and BOTH/EITHER can really affect someones appetite.


he should go to his doctor. have a serious chat with him, show him his bmi, tell him your worried about his symptoms...i think he needs to be shocked into getting this issue sorted of his OWN accord.

You've had some really good advice already, but as has been said I really think you need to get him to a doctor. It is very likely he may be anemic and his extremely low weight will not be helping him much either. Try to chat to him as to whether he would be okay to go vegetarian even just for a while while properly learning to supplement his diet at the same time. This will also be easier on him for weight gaining purposes; we have some vegetarian weight gainers who pack in lots of calories.

But 2400? No, that's not enough at all. He should be eating closer to 3000, 3500 as suggested. Again, I would REALLY take him to a doctor. And you do need to make sure he takes charge of this. You can lead a horse to water but you can't make them drink.

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It may be a good idea to get him tested for diabetes also. I have a friend who didn't know he had diabetes (Type1) and was eating but dropping weight as everytime he had sugar, his body responeded badly. He is nearly 190cm and ended up weighing close to 60kg... Not sure what all that is in pounds and feet. Anyways, once he got tested and was diagnosed he was able to eat normally and put weight on.

I second the diabetic possibility - it would explain his low weight and dizzy spells.  A doctor's visit is in order - very soon.

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