My GP has told me I’m un­der­weight. How can I gain weight and stay healthy?

YOURS (UK) - - Look After Yourself -

“Eat­ing a ‘healthy diet’ is not nec­es­sar­ily healthy for some­one who is un­der­weight,” says con­sul­tant gas­troen­terol­o­gist Dr Si­mon Gabe. “Try to eat lit­tle and often, three meals a day with snacks and nour­ish­ing drinks in be­tween. Keep your meals sim­ple and easy to eat if you don’t have much of an ap­petite.

If you usu­ally eat low-fat ‘diet’ type foods, switch to the full­fat or full-calo­rie equiv­a­lents, be­cause the ex­tra en­ergy in them will be help­ful. Keep a stock of high-en­ergy snacks to hand, such as creamy yo­gurts or cheese and crack­ers, to help bump up your calo­rie in­take and try milky drinks be­fore bed­time and be­tween meals.

“It is im­por­tant to do some ex­er­cise, but do­ing too much means that it will be very hard to put on weight, be­cause you will burn off the ex­tra calo­ries that you’re eat­ing – it’s a ques­tion of bal­ance. Keep an eye on your weight for a month to see if these changes help. If you are con­cerned, speak to your doc­tor or health­care pro­fes­sional.”

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