Top Healthy Smoothie Recipes for Weight Gain
Many people experience the need to gain weight at some point in their life and luckily, there is a healthy way to do it!
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3 Reasons Why You Might Want To Gain Weight
As weird as it may seem, gaining weight is sometimes as difficult as losing it and there are many reasons why it may be essential to put on a little extra weight.
Killer Gym Body
You’ve just hit the gym, and you can’t wait to transform from skinny to bulky. If you want to build muscle, you need a healthy nutritious diet and a proper intake of protein.
Recovering from Illness Or An Eating Disorder
Maybe you’re trying to get back on track after sickness or an eating disorder that caused you to lose weight.
Illness like hyperthyroidism, diabetes, inflammatory bowel diseases, and even depression can cause dramatic weight-loss.
It could be that you like the way you look with a little extra weight. As long as you’re within a healthy weight range, there’s no problem with that.
Healthy Food For Weight Gain
As tempting as it is to binge on high-calorie donuts and burgers, you certainly don’t want to do that! Although it will surely bring about the results you want, it also brings along a list of health concerns.
Consider the following options instead:
1. Healthy Smoothies
Drinking your calories instead of eating them is great if you don’t have a huge appetite, if you don’t feel like chewing a lot or if you don’t have much time.
Imagine the ingredients you can combine in just one cup of your favorite smoothie. You can actually consume 400-800 calories from one single serving smoothie if you put in the right ingredients.
2. Nuts and Nut Butters
Nuts are calorie-dense, meaning you get a lot of calories from a small serving. Take almonds, for instance, 1/4 cup of almonds have around 180 calories!
They’re also extremely nutritious and rich in unsaturated fats, vegetable protein, antioxidants, fibers, and minerals.
You can also go for nut butter if you’re a fan of them. Spread it on toast, toss it in your smoothie or eat it with fruit.
3. Healthy Carbs
Complex carbs are great if you’re looking for a cost-effective way to add those extra calories. Make sure you go for healthy, complex carbs.
Try these for a healthy carbohydrate intake:
- Whole grains: Oats, brown rice, quinoa
- Whole fruits: bananas and apples
- Sweet Potatoes
4. Oily Fish
Salmon and oily fish are awesome sources of proteins and healthy fats. They’re low in sodium and loaded with phosphorus, vitamins B6 and B12(1).
The avocado is a very special fruit (Yes, avocados are technically a fruit not a vegetable). Most fruits are high in carbs, however, avocados are high in fat. They contain a high amount of potassium, which is really important for heart and kidney health.
One-half an avocado will give you 4.6g of dietary fiber, 345 mg of potassium,19.5 mg of magnesium, 60 mg of folate and vitamins A, C, E, B6, and K1 (2).
6. Dark Chocolate
The human race is so fortunate that there’s a healthy type of chocolate! Dark chocolate is a powerful source of antioxidants.
One study even showed that cocoa has more antioxidants when compared to other fruits like blueberries and acai.
The Best Ingredients To Add To Your Smoothie
The fascinating thing about smoothies is that they’re very versatile, you can add whichever ingredients you prefer and change recipes according to your liking.
This can be water, milk, coconut water(or coconut milk drink), nut milk, or even brewed tea. You can always add a mix of liquid with greek or regular yogurt for an extra nutritional boost and creamier consistency.
Strawberries, blueberries, acai puree, peaches, blackberries, raspberries, and mangoes. These are all great for a flavorful and colorful smoothie.
Here’s when the soft fruit jumps in, avocados and bananas are a staple in smoothies. They give smoothies a perfect consistency and taste awesome.
These are optional, of course. If you use a lot of vegetables in your smoothie and need to offset the taste with a little sweetener, you can go for natural sweeteners like honey, agave or maple syrup.
Get your daily requirement of healthy fats straight from your smoothie! You can add nut butter, coconut oil, olive oil, chia and flax seeds.
Crushed ice gives your smoothie the perfect consistency and chill. Make sure you omit ice if your soft fruit is frozen too.
There are many add-ons that make your smoothie even more flavorsome. These include greens, cacao powder, cacao nibs, pumpkin seeds, lime juice, ginger, and cinnamon.
Protein powders are great for smoothies. Whey protein used to be the main protein powder available commercially but now there are many non-dairy alternatives such as hemp, soy, or rice protein powders.
Ingredients To Avoid
Now that you’ve established the smoothie formula and best ingredients, you want to make sure you avoid unhealthy additions.
Stick to natural sweeteners and skip sweetening your smoothie with sugar . Yes, sugar will raise your calorie intake, but in an unhealthy way. Also, beware of canned fruits, they’re literally packed with sugar from the syrup.
It’s common that people add chocolate syrup, ice cream, and frozen yogurt to their smoothies. Again, these are just loaded with unhealthy fats and high in sugar.
Go for cacao powder instead of chocolate syrup and substitute frozen ice cream with Greek yogurt.
Healthy Smoothie Recipes For Weight Gain
Super Protein Power Smoothie
This recipe by Stanford Health Care is delicious and packed with protein at 870 calories per serving. Just throw all the ingredients in and blend.
- 2 tablespoons protein powder
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
- 1 banana
- 1 cup any liquid (or more as needed)
- ½ cup low-fat, plain organic yogurt or Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon peanut butter or almond butter
- 1 tablespoon almond or avocado oil
- Crushed ice (optional)
Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie
This recipe is perfect if you’re craving something sweet. Just blend all the ingredients and your 585-calorie smoothie is ready.
- 1 1/2 cups of water or milk
- 2 scoops chocolate flavored protein powder (This brand is the best tasting and top rated protein powder).
- 1 cup of spinach
- 1 banana peeled
- 2 tbsp of natural peanut butter
- 1 tbsp cacao nibs or dark cocoa powder
Strawberry Avocado Smoothie
If you’re in the mood for a classic recipe, this 400 calorie recipe tastes great.
- ¾ Cup plain or vanilla yogurt or whole coconut
- ¼ Cup milk or coconut milk
- 1 ½ Cup frozen strawberries
- 1 banana
- ¼ avocado
- ¼ tsp Vanilla extract
Smoothies are a fantastic option for gaining weight, keep it healthy and simple and you’ll be well on your way to putting on those extra pounds. Also, check out our post-workout smoothie guide for additional smoothie recipes.