5 Foods to Avoid When Trying to Gain Weight

A consistent surplus of calories will encourage weight gain in addition to strengthening exercises. Your height, age, gender, etc. can all play a role in what your ideal daily calorie intake should be. Nonetheless, your main source of calories should come from nutrient-dense foods that will promote healthy weight gain. On the other hand, here are 5 foods to avoid when trying to gain weight:

foods to avoid when trying to gain weight
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Disclaimer: We are not medical professionals or experts. What is written throughout the content of our website is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as medical or professional advice. What you choose to do with the information provided is at your own risk and discretion. Before making any significant changes to your diet and / or lifestyle, be sure to contact your health practitioner.


It is no secret that fast food can accelerate weight gain. However, while many fast food meals contain a higher number of calories, it is best to avoid gaining weight by eating a lot of fast food. Our favorite burgers, nuggets, fries, etc., contain higher levels of added sugars, saturated and trans fats, sodium, and other non-beneficial ingredients. Too much of this combination can overtime, increase your risk for certain diseases and adverse health effects.

Additionally, gaining weight with fast food can bring about acne breakouts, bloating, and fat accumulation in undesired areas. To note though, gaining weight with any kind of food may cause weight gain in undesired areas. Therefore, it is important that you are also exercising when trying to gain weight to help tone and shape where the added pounds go.

Click here to check out a list of beneficial strength exercises that can help to increase your body mass:


foods to avoid when trying to gain weight
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When we think “sugary beverages”, sodas may pop up in our head. However, soda isn’t the only high sugar beverage that is best to limit your consumption of when trying to gain weight and in general. Certain fruit juices, sports drinks, energy drinks, and more, often contain high amounts of added sugars as well.

Foods and drinks with lots of added sugars additionally earn the term “empty calorie” foods. These are food and beverage items that have a caloric content that provides little to no nutritional benefit. More negatives of sugary, empty calorie beverages include an elevated proneness to fat accumulation in the abdomen, dental issues, and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes.

Healthier alternatives: DIY weight gain smoothies, water, herbal teas, almond milk.


While it may be tempting, try to avoid gaining weight with the help of junk foods. Again, many of these convenient packaged snacks are empty calorie foods. Yes, they’ll cause weight gain, but they can also cause adverse health effects both long-term and short-term.

There are a variety of healthful, nutrient-dense snacks that can help to promote weight gain. Many variations of nuts provide a considerable number of calories per serving. Protein bars can aid in muscle growth with your exercises.

Healthier alternatives: Certain protein bars, nuts and seeds, fruits and veggies.


Processed meats include packaged meats (canned, plastic, etc.), smoked meats, and a lot of the meat in your orders placed at a fast food drive-thru. There have been numerous publications on the negative effects of processed meats on the body. An increased risk of cancer, heart disease, and other diseases have been listed as concerns associated with the consumption of processed meats.

foods to avoid when trying to gain weight
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They may contain a lot of protein and calories, but it is best to add processed meats to the list of foods to avoid when trying to gain weight and in general.

Healthier alternatives: Fresh, lean-cut meats, certain sea foods.


It’s good to treat yourself every once in a while. However, our favorite candies and ice creams are also empty calorie foods, with many of them containing refined / added sugars. They can cause dental problems, as well as heighten the risk of certain adverse health effects.

Healthier alternatives: Greek yogurt, homemade smoothies, peanut butter w/ apple slices.

Click here to check out 10 healthy snack ideas for weight gain:


1“13 Effects of Fast Food on the Body.” Healthline, Healthline Media, www.healthline.com/health/fast-food-effects-on-body#sugar-and-fat.

2“Pictures: What You Should Know About Processed Meat.” WebMD, WebMD, www.webmd.com/food-recipes/ss/slideshow-processed-meats.

3Healthline. (2018). 13 Ways That Sugary Soda is Bad For Your Health. [online] Available at: https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/13-ways-sugary-soda-is-bad-for-you#section1 [Accessed 17 Oct. 2018].