Gaining Weight as a Vegan

A lot of times when non-vegans think of vegans, they think thin. Most well-known vegan advocates preach the weight loss aspect as a good reason to go vegan and it is. Vegans have a much lower instance of  obesity and a lot of people take on the plant-based diet as a means to lose weight. Because of this, a lot of people seeking to gain or maintain weight may be extremely wary about switching to this lifestyle. I can’t even really find any other articles on gaining weight as a vegan unless its for weight training. So I hope that this article can be a little helpful.

Whether you are trying to recover from an eating disorder, are underweight, or just need to gain weight for any other reason, this is very possible on as a vegan. Weight gain or weight loss is essentially (but not completely) about creating calorie deficit or excess. Again, I am not a doctor or a dietitian, but this basic concept of weight management is fairly simple. If your goal is weight gain, you’re going to want to adopt a high calorie vegan diet.Everyone has a Resting Metabolic Rate, your RMR is how many calories your body needs to function based on your current weight, age, sex, height, and physical activity. Generally, if you eat more than your RMR, you will gain weight. This has to take into account how much you’re moving around, too. If you’re really physically active, you’ll have to take in a lot more calories to compensate for what you burned off! Obviously, though, some foods will promote weight gain better than others. 1,500 calories of fruits and veggies are going to affect your body a little different than 1,500 calories of fried and processed foods, but we don’t suggest that because eating a lot of fried and junk foods will create other health problems for you.

To make it easier, here are some foods you will probably want to incorporate into your diet if you want to gain weight. (Make sure to let me know if any numbers are wrong!)

High Calorie Fruits/Veggies

appetite-1238257_1280Avocado – 332 cal. per avocado

Dried Cherries – 266 cal. per 1/2 cup

Dried Blueberries 254 cal. per 1/2 cup

Dried Pears 236 cal. per 1/2 cup

Raisins 217 cal. per 1/2 cup

Dates 208 cal. per 1/2 cup

Dried Apricots (191),

Dried Peaches (189),

Figs (186),

Dried Cranberries (185),

Dried Apples (104)

Beans/Legumes

peanuts-982663_1280Black beans – 661 cal. per cup

Kidney beans – 613 cal. per cup

Edamame – 376 cal. per cup

Pinto beans – 245 cal. per cup

Lentils – 230 cal. per cup

Lima beans 217 cal. per cup

Black eyed peas – 130 cal. per cup

Plant Oils

olive-oil-968657_1280

Oil could really give you that extra caloric boost. Most oils (Olive,, Walnut, Vegetable, ect.) are between 115-120 calories per tbsp. and 11-16g of fat. They’re really easy to add to your food! Toss your salad or pasta in it, use it in stir frys, or even just bake with it.

 

Nuts/Seeds

hazelnut-1098181_1280 (Mixed nuts are around 800 cal. per cup)

Pecans 199 cal. per ounce

Pine Nuts 188 cal. per ounce

Brazil Nuts 144 cal. per ounce

Walnuts 183 cal. per ounce

Hazelnuts/Filberts 181 cal. per ounce

Peanuts & Sunflower Seeds 164 cal. per ounce

Almonds 162 cal. per ounce

Cashew Nuts 161 cal. per ounce

Pumpkin  Seeds 160 cal per ounce.

Pistachio Nuts 159 cal. per ounce

Flaxseeds 150 cal. per ounce

Chia Seeds 136 cal. per ounce

Grains

pasta-527286_1280

Amaranth – 729 cal. per cup

Oats – 607 cal. per cup

Quinoa – 635 cal. per cup

Popcorn kernels – 420 cal. per 1/2 cup (unpopped)

Wild / Brown Rice – 320 cal. per cup

Bagel – 245 cal. per bagel

Multi grain bread – 110 cal. per slice

Spaghetti – 221 cal. per cup

Tempeh – 320 cal. per cup

 

If you still need a little push, there’s always plenty of accidental vegan snacks to munch on between meals!

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