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Gain Weight Fast Without Getting Fat

The need to gain weight is not a ticket to eat whatever you want. Healthy weight gain requires a balanced approach, just like a weight loss program.

Comfort or junk foods may result in weight gain, but they won’t give you the nutrients you need to prevent or fight cancer, and they are high in cancer promoters like fat and sugar.  Here are some ideas to get you started:

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Whole Eggs

High quality protein, healthy fats, easy to digest…eggs are nutritious for you and so easy to incorporate into your breakfast on a slice of whole grain toast, or served boiled for a midmorning snack! If you aren’t allergic to eggs, eat animal products, and/or it is allowable to eat eggs based on your cancer type, you might want to consider consuming several eggs a week. Eggs from pastured hens are more nutritious than the conventional eggs you might find at the supermarket. They are higher in vitamin A, E and omega-3s, as well as lower in cholesterol and saturated fat. The omega-3s help lower inflammation, a major cancer control pathway. 

Which companies are my go-to egg sources?

There are several companies that produce pasture-raised eggs (Kirkland, Pete & Gerry’s for example) but Vital Farms has received a Pasture-Raised designation from Certified Humane and they offer a customer loyalty program.

Nuts and Nut Butters

Nuts and nut butters are not only delish, they deliver protein, healthy fats and a heap of calories. A couple of handfuls a day with a meal or snack quickly adds hundreds of calories. Spread nut butters on rice cakes, whole grain crackers or toast, or fruit and add into smoothies and yogurts. Be sure to choose 100% nut butters with no added sugar or extra oils because those are inflammatory and can drive the cancer process through a few cancer control pathways. 

What am I nuts about?

I’ve tried Maranatha, 365 Organic, and my all-time favorite almond butter for “spreadability” is Justin’s. Just be sure to choose the plain version so you can skip the additional sweeteners.

Starchy Carbs

Beans, peas, corn, potatoes, yams, winter root veggies, they add carbs and calories and supports healthy digestive health by providing resistance starches that feed your gut bacteria. Throw them into salads, stews, soups, and casseroles. If you have challenges swallowing or have mouth sores, simply blenderize starchy veggies with a little veggie broth. 

Salmon and Oily Fish

If you choose to eat fish, salmon and other oily fish are excellent sources of protein and important healthy fats. Just one 6-ounce fillet of salmon provides around 350 calories, 34 grams of protein and 4 grams of omega-3 fats. 

What’s fishy about salmon?

Its’ really important to avoid farm-raised salmon, because they feast on corn, which contributes to the fish having a much lower profile of healthy fatty acids.


Unlike other whole fruits, avocados are fairly calorie-dense loaded with healthy fats and therefore a great food to help you gain weight. Just one large avocado provides around 322 calories, 29 grams of fat and 17 grams of fiber. Avocados are also high in vitamins, minerals and various beneficial plant compounds. There are many varieties of avocados and they all pretty much have the same nutrient profile so don’t get hung up if you can’t find a Haas (the most popular kind of avocado). Try adding avocados to your main meals and other dishes such as omelets or sandwiches or add to the blender for a healthy, creamy smoothie.

Best tip to avoid buying overripened avocados?

Remove the stem. If its light green, the avocado is underripe and will be ready to eat in a few days.

Protein Smoothies

Protein Smoothies can be a very nutritious and quick way to gain weight and when you don’t have the energy to cook, they can pass for a high-quality meal. I am not talking about the convenient, commercial shakes and smoothies out there like Ensure, Boost, and Carnation Instant Breakfast…those contain things no human body should have to endure. You can do this…get your inner chef on and load up your blender with nut milk, coconut milk, and boost calories with add-ins like flax, brewer’s yeast, avocado, and extra fruit. One huge tip: If you add flaxseed, be sure to drink your smoothie right away or you’ll have an interesting slab of gel to get through. One more thing: a big reason people don’t like smoothies is that protein powders can be chalky or gritty. 

The smoothie mix that always seems to pass the “taste test”?

I’ve tried a bunch of them and my favorite soy-based shake mix is Juice Plus Complete.   

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