You often talk about various healthy ways to shed pounds, but there are some people who are concerned about weight gain. Being underweight is also a medical condition you cannot ignore. It is as equally bad as being overweight or obese.
You can use a BMI weight calculator to see if you are underweight, overweight or obese. A healthy BMI is 18.5. Lower than this is underweight and overweight when it is over 25 and obese when it is over 30. Many people think that being obese can increase the risk of diabetes and heart attack, so you should immediately make a plan to pare down, but they assume that being underweight is not as deadly as being overweight.
Weighing too little can weaken your immune system and your bones. Studies have revealed that underweight people are more prone to osteoporosis and vulnerable to infections than those who have maintained a healthy weight.
What are the causes of being underweight?
Before you know how you can gain weight safely, you should know the causes of being underweight. Using a BMI calculator, you must see if you are overweight or underweight. Now you need to figure out why it is so. Do you need unwell, tired or exhausted?
You may feel it due to underlying medical conditions such as the poor efficiency of thyroid hormone. Consult your GP and get the test done. Another reason is that you may not be eating a well-balanced diet, or you may be the victim of lost appetite.
Eating disorders may also be a cause. It is characterized as anxiety you feel about food. For instance, you can have an eating disorder if stress or other emotional or psychological conditions distort your regular eating habits. Consult your doctor to get properly diagnosed.
Why being underweight is not good at all?
Being underweight is not a good sign of health. It may cause:
If you are underweight, it is likely that you have not been eating well. A balanced diet is crucial to maintaining a healthy weight. For instance, your diet must include a variety of fruits and vegetables, eggs, fish, dairy products, seeds, and the like.
If your food does not have a variety, you will likely not receive all vitamins and minerals from your diet. For instance, you can get calcium from dairy products, and if they are missing in your diet, your bones will become weak. Your body will have symptoms of osteoporosis at a very young age.
Nutritional deficiency can weaken your immune cells as well. You will more likely catch infections. Your body needs all vitamins and minerals for proper functioning. Nutritional deficiency can cause underlying medical conditions. One of the symptoms is tiredness or exhaustion. Studies have also found that you will more likely feel irritated and angry due to nutritional deficiency.
Your immune system has to work with full potential to keep infections at bay. If you are underweight, it may not be able to defend you against infectious diseases. In fact, studies suggest that your body must have all nutrients and a healthy weight to have a strong immune system. Even a little nutritional deficiency can take a toll on the capacity of your immune cells to fight against foreign invaders.
How to increase your weight safely
You cannot cure it if you are underweight because of an underlying medical condition like overactive thyroid hormone. You should consult a doctor to get prescribed certain medicines that can reduce the symptoms.
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However, if you are underweight due to a poor diet, taking a balanced diet with enough exercise can help you put on weight safely. Here are some of the suggestions:
Eat loads of fruits and vegetable every day
Eat a lot of fruits and vegetables almost every day. Experts recommend eating five portions of them. They are all low in calories, so you do not need to be afraid of putting on too much. As your body needs multiple nutrients to function properly, you can get all of them from fruits and veggies.
However, they consist of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory benefits too, and therefore you can prevent yourself from various medical problems. Underweight people more frequently catch infectious diseases like cold, cough, and seasonal allergies, affecting their finances.
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Consume starchy carbohydrates
Potatoes, bread, rice, pasta, and other starchy carbohydrates are good sources of calories. However, do not base your meal around these carbs. Do not compromise with a principle of a balanced diet. Starchy carbohydrates should be a part of your meal, but they should not be the primary energy source. Otherwise, you can increase the risk of diabetes.
Try to include wholegrain food as it lowers the risk of diabetes when you are on a weight gain journey. For instance, you should eat potatoes with peel, brown rice, brown bread etc.
Include dairy products, legumes and beans
Dairy products are an extremely important source of calcium. Try to drink whole milk and cheese to put on weight, and once you reach the desired level, you can switch back to skimmed milk and low-fat cheese.
Eat beans and legumes. They are a rich source of protein, good for building muscle mass. Protein supplements can also help improve your muscle health, but you will have to devote some time to exercise. Weight lifting or other strength training exercises are essential for improving muscle mass and bone mass.
Eggs and meat are also good protein sources, and they are rich in calories, assisting you in gaining weight. Add in fish like salmon and mackerel as they are rich in essential fatty acids that your body cannot generate itself.
What should you avoid?
Putting on weight does not mean that you have the freedom to eat everything. It is always advised that you do not consume food high in sugar. If your diet is high in fat, salt and sugar, you should try to eat a smaller amount. Gaining weight is not an overnight process.
It is vital to remember that your BMI cannot just determine your complete health. A diet high in fat and sugar can make you diabetic and cause cardiovascular problems. Try to avoid consuming saturated fats found in cakes, chocolates, ghee etc.
The bottom line
Being underweight is not a good sign of health, but you can maintain a healthy weight by eating a balanced diet. Do not just rush to a high-fat diet like eggs, fish and meat and high sugar foods like ice cream and cold drinks to increase weight.
These shortcuts are not guaranteed to help maintain a healthy weight, but they can certainly cause severe medical conditions. Try to have a healthy balanced diet. It must have a variety of fruits and veggies as they can supply you with all nutrients that your body needs to function correctly. Exercise is still a must as muscle mass, and bone mass play a vital role in gaining pounds.