Weight Gain
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Meal Plans for Gaining Weight

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Hi, I'm new to this site and I'm really hoping that it will help. I have always been skinny and the only time I've ever gained and kept on a bit of weight was after I had my son. But my issue is whenever I get stressed I lose my appetite. Since having alot of stressful times the last little while, I've lost all my weight I had on. I'm currently 27, 5'7" and 116 lbs. I hate the way I feel and look at this weight and was hoping with some guidance from people who are going through the same thing will help me. I've been reading everything I need to do and that I have to eat at minimum 3000 calories a day. As much as I really want to gain the weight I can't seem to consume that much into me in a day. This is where you come in, does anyone have meal plans you could share so I can reach my 3000 calories a day. I would really appreciate any reply! Thanks!

Edited Nov 06 2013 11:05 by coach_k
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11 Replies (last)

B: 1 cup of cereal e.g. bran flakes with 1 cup of whole milk and a banana chopped in; 2 slices of thick toast spread with 2 tbsp of peanut butter ~800 calories or so

L: A sandwich made of 2 slices of bread spread with 1 tbsp of butter, 4 slices of ham, 1 cup of salad; 1 cup of fruit juice e.g. apple; packet of crisps e.g. walkers; container of yogurt ~700 calories or so

S: 1 cup of whole milk, granola/cereal bar ~350 calories

D: Protein,carbs,veggies e.g. Spaghetti bolognaise or sausages with mashed potato and beans ~ aim for a 600 calorie minimum

P: 1 bowl of ice cream with strawberries ~200 calories

S: 1 cup of whole milk with 4 sandwich cookies e.g. oreo's ~350 calories


Select from one of the following menus

  • Orange juice (12-oz glass)
  • Bowl of Cheerios (large) with granola added, skim milk
  • Bagel or 2 slices of wheat toast with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter on each piece


  • 2 pieces of fruit
  • A glass of juice (12 oz)
  • A breakfast sandwich of an English muffin
  • Scrambled eggs (2)
  • 2 pieces of ham
  • 2 slices of cheese


  • Bagel with 1 tablespoon of peanut butter
  • Smoothie, made with:
    • 1 scoop of protein powder
    • 8 oz yogurt
    • 12 oz skim milk
    • 1 cup of frozen fruit



  • Sports drink
  • Snack (choose one)
    • Peanut butter and jelly sandwich
    • A container of yogurt with granola
    • A small bag of trail mix and sports drink
    • Energy bar, such as Balance, Power or Clif Bar



Select from one of the following menus

  • Submarine sandwich (12-inch), made with one of the following proteins:
    • Chicken
    • Tuna
    • Steak
    • Ham and cheese
  • Baked chips
  • Lemonade or juice


  • Cheeseburger
  • Grilled chicken sandwich
  • French fries (small)
  • Milkshake (small)


  • Grilled chicken salad
  • Baked potato
  • Juice


  • Wrap
  • Salad
  • Milkshake


  • Bagel sandwich with turkey, cheese, and fruit
  • Pasta with sauce and 2 pieces of chicken
  • Salad


  • Omelet with 3 eggs, cheese, vegetables,
  • Hash browns
  • Toast (2 slices)


Afternoon Snack

  • Drink (choose one)
    • Low-fat milk
    • Juice
    • Lemonade
  • Snack (choose one)
    • Banana with peanut butter (2 tablespoons)
    • Trail mix with cereal, nuts, and dried fruit (1 cup or 2 handfuls)
    • Cheese and crackers
    • Cereal (large bowl)


Split your plate evenly between protein and carbohydrates

  • Protein (choose one)
    • Steak
    • Chicken
    • Fish
    • Pork
    • Turkey
  • Carbohydrates (choose one)
    • Pasta
    • Baked potato
    • Rice
    • Corn
  • Side (choose one)
    • Salad
    • Cooked vegetables
    • Fruit
  • Drink (choose one)
    • Low-fat milk
    • Juice
    • Lemonade


Late-Night Snack

  • Snack (choose one)
    • Bowl of ice cream or frozen yogurt
    • Smoothie or protein shake with ice added
    • Peanut butter and jelly sandwich

Sample Exchange Meal Plan

Breakfast (2 carb + 2 protein + fat or “dairy” + fruit)
-bagel with cream cheese or 2 slices toast with peanut butter + yogurt + fruit
-smoothie with banana, milk, and peanut butter + toast or granola bar
-2 eggs + toast with peanut butter + fruit
-cereal or oatmeal or granola + milk or yogurt + fruit + nuts or peanut butter

Lunch (2-3 carb + 1-2 protein + fat or “dairy” + vegetables)
-a sandwich or wrap with a protein (egg, tofu) + a fat (avocado, cheese, hummus) + vegetables or tomato soup + chips
-salad with beans + an egg + toast and butter or baked beans 
-pasta + meat + vegetables with oil, butter, or hummus
beans with rice + vegetables + fruit with fat (peanut butter, almonds or cheese)
-2 slices bread with hummus or mayo + protein (egg, lunch meat, tofu) + lettuce/tomato + 1 serving crackers or chips
-frozen meal, instant noodles, or can of soup + carrots and hummus + fruit

Dinner (2-3 carb + 1-2 protein + fat or “dairy” + vegetables)
-pasta with protein + side salad with 2 tbsp dressing + milk
-rice with veg, beans, avocado and protein + milk
-2 hard-boiled eggs, a tossed salad with two tablespoons of oil dressing, a cup of rice

Snacks (2-3/day)
-supplement drink, shake, or bar + fruit
-granola bar or muffin + fruit
-crackers + vegetables with hummus
-two scoops ice-cream or ice cream cone
-chocolate bar or 2 cookies with milk
- pita bread or crackers + hummus
-1 oz nuts + string cheese or yogurt
-apple + peanut butter
-toast with spread + fruit
-crackers + soy latte
-soy yogurt + fruit


You probably want to eat really dense foods if you are having problems with feeling too full.  

So try to eat high-calorie, low volume foods.  Some ideas are:

  • nuts or trail mix
  • dried fruit
  • full fat milk or yogurt
  • Weight gain drinks (like ensure plus)
  • smoothies or milkshakes
  • bagels
  • Nut butters
  • cheese (full fat)

Here is a sample meal plan:


Smoothie, made with 1 c whole milk, 1 c full fat greek yogurt, 1 banana, 2 TB peanut butter = aprox. 600 calories

with 1 or 2 pieces toast with butter

Snack:  1/3 cup trail mix (190 cals) and 8 oz juice (120)

Lunch:  turkey sandwich with cheese; salad with dressing and nuts; 1 c chocolate milk

Snack:  apple with 2 TB peanut butter, yogurt

Dinner:  Pasta with oil or pesto, veggies with dip/dressing, 3-4 oz protein; juice or milk

Snack:  ice cream with nuts; dried fruit

May 09 2012 09:46
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Hello, I'm new to this website and wondering if anyone knows of any drinks/shakes that can help me gain weight?

al29: Ensure or Boost are popular. I prefer the taste of the ready-to-drink Carnation Instant Breakfast bottles.

I want to send a big thank you to those of you who provided me with meal plans. There are so many things to choose from and will be very helpful!! Thank you :)
May 09 2012 20:08
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Where could I buy those drinks from?

al29: pretty much any grocery store or supermarket, even drug stores.

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hello, i reaaly liked your diet plan however what protein powder would you suggest to use?

I had B: 2x wheetabix with yogurt on top

S: packet crisps x chocolate wafer bar

L: sandwhich with filling , apple , yogurt

S: yogurt x packet little biscuits

D: main meal

S: chocolate bar, yogurt, fruit, pack crisps
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Jenny found Calorie Count when she decided to stop dieting and start living better. She started logging her food, and was shocked by how many calories she was actually consuming. By making smarter choices, and being kinder to herself, she was able to reach her weight loss goal. Now, at 60 lbs. lost, and 4 months maintaining her weight, she is more confident and living a healthier and happier life.

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