3. Eat many servings of healthy fats daily. The healthy fats include monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats that are good for your heart health. These fats are also high in calories so will help with weight gain. Healthy fats include olive, olive oil, canola oil, avocado, nuts, almonds, walnuts, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, and nut butters (almond, cashew or peanut). Here are some tips on how to incorporate more of these foods in your daily diet.

  • Cook foods in heat-safe oils such as peanut and canola.
  • Add nuts and seeds to salads.
  • Add avocado slices to sandwiches and salads (see recipe below for Chicken Guacamole Salad).
  • Snack on almonds, walnuts, or pecans and add these to no-sugar-added yogurt.

4. Eat from a variety of food groups. Make sure that you are eating from a variety of food groups for good nutrition and also to keep up your calories. If you are having a dairy product, add a whole grain (popcorn, unsweetened granola or cereal) or other plant food. If you have an apple add peanut butter or cheese. Think about your mix of protein, fat, and carbohydrates.

If you still experience difficulty gaining weight, despite good efforts, make sure to discuss this with your doctor as he/she may want to run additional tests. Below is a delicious, nutrient-packed recipe.

Chicken Guacamole Salad
1 14.5-ounce can fat-free, reduced sodium chicken broth
1 can water
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 medium avocado, finely diced*
1 small onion, finely diced
2 small tomatoes, diced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons fat-free sour cream
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper

1.In a medium saucepan, bring chicken broth and 1 can water to a boil. Add chicken breasts and simmer over low heat for about 20 minutes.
2.Remove chicken and chop into small chunks. Cool in a medium bowl for 10 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and mix well.
3.Serve on toasted whole-wheat tortillas or pitas, or just eat with a fork.

* For extra calories, 2 avocados could be used in this recipe.

Serving Size: 1/5 recipe Makes: 5 servings
178 calories, 7g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 305mg sodium, 7g total carbohydrate, 3g dietary fiber, 52mg cholesterol, 22g protein

Copyright © American Diabetes Association from Healthy Calendar Diabetic Cooking. Reprinted with permission from The American Diabetes Association. To order this book, please call 1-800-232-6733 or order online at http://store.diabetes.org/.

Read Lara's bio here.

Read more of Lara Rondinelli's columns.

NOTE: The information is not intended to be a replacement or substitute for consultation with a qualified medical professional or for professional medical advice related to diabetes or another medical condition. Please contact your physician or medical professional with any questions and concerns about your medical condition.


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Last Modified Date: June 24, 2013

All content on dLife.com is created and reviewed in compliance with our editorial policy.

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