Nutritional Advice for Athlete That Needs to Gain Weight

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Problem Statement:
A high school basketball player (junior) who is 6'8 and weighs 200 lbs. is dreaming of a college basketball scholarship someday. A college coach that is recruiting him told him that he needed to bulk up and gain about 25-35 more pounds in order to be considered a college prospect. Advice for weight Gain:

In order to gain healthy, lean muscle and not fat is to pay attention to (5) guiding principles: Increased calorie consumption
Eating at the right time
Strength Train
Genetics- this is the first and the one point that you can’t change. Genetics is crucial in determining exactly how to gain weight and at what rate. It plays a crucial role in getting everything out of your weight gain plan. As you are a hard gainer, take a good look at your genetics. Look at your family. If other family members are thin, you probably have inherited a genetic predisposition to thinness. You can alter your look to a certain extent with diet and weight training but you shouldn’t expect to change much. One item to think about is whether or not you are a fidgeter. Do you twiddle your fingers; bounce your leg or can’t sit still. All this movement burns calories. To a point of 300-700 calories per day! So, chill out and relax. Increased Calorie Consumption

Gaining weight is a matter of creating positive energy balances. This means eating more than you burn so that you have calories left over to create weight gain. In this case, we want that weight to be gained as muscle. As someone that is still growing as well as an athlete, you will need to consume an additional 500 calories on top of the 3500-4000 calories a day that you are already consuming to maintain weight. But eat more of what? Athlete’s need more calories than other people need, but they also should be sure that the calories they consume contain protein, fat, carbohydrates and extra vitamins and minerals. Young athletes may have an easier time adding calories if they eat five or six meals a day. This includes your main three meals plus a few snacks. Here are some strategies for adding additional calories. First, Increase portion sizes of what you’re already eating. Initially, this might mean eating until you feel uncomfortably full. Eventually, your stomach “stretches” and gets used to eating more, and a higher calorie intake is accomplished. Second, drinking calories is an effective way to increase calories. Add a high calorie drink to each meal or snack. Have a shake at least once a day in addition to eating five to six meals. Third, Eat “denser” foods. These are foods that contain more calories per mouthful, so you need to eat less to get more calories. Forth, when preparing meals, add calorie-boosting extras such as cheese to sandwiches, butter to vegetables, and potatoes and olive oil to rice and noodles. Throw in nuts, avocados, and dried fruit to salads and other dishes. And lastly, don’t drink water before meals. This will give you a false sense of fullness. Eating at the right time- If you are serious about gaining muscle weight, you need to have the right foods available at the right time. In order to help you reach this goal, here are some items to think about. Before you strength train you want to load up on a carbohydrate-protein meal. The meal will digest into glucose and amino acids. Second, after you workout you need to immediately fuel with a snack that contains protein. This snack will replenish the glycogen stores that were depleted. Third, eat frequent throughout the day. Try to eat every four hours. This includes breakfast, snacks, lunch and dinner. This behavior will distribute the calories evenly though out the day and ensure muscles have a steady supply of glucose for fuel and amino acids for growth. If you eat toolittle your body will break down muscles for fuel and this is counterproductive to your weight gain goal. Three days of exercise per week are necessary to maximize the...
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