I am a 65 year old healthy male. I am quite fit and I want to stay that way. I would like to put on about 10lbs in a healthy way can you please recommend strategies or point me to a book or site that would. Many thanks. Alan
Hi, the best way to put 10lbs on in a healthy way is to gain weight in the form of muscle. After the age of 25 its estimated what we lose muscle at a rate of 0.5-1% per year. Therefore its very important that both men and women engage in weight bearing exercise. There are many benefits from gaining some additional muscle which includes reducing your risk of diabetes, improved metabolism, improved memory and also better change of recovery if one has a fall. If you are able to, I would suggest either trying to carry out a short workout routine at a gym preferably two to three times a week, with the focus more on weight and resistance training and a little cardiovascular exercise as well. I would not recommend any specific website at this stage as there is a bewildering amount of information and misinformation, but rather a book by a single author. Take a look at strength Training past 50 by Dr Wayne Wescott. This will give you a good start on planning a training program suitable for you. Once you have a program in place, I can make some dietary recommendations. It is particularly important to ensure that you provide your body with the right food following your training sessions to help your body recover, but also to assist in muscle growth, as the following 24 hours is when your body repairs and builds the muscles your worked out previously. I would suggest, that following an exercise session, that you consume a combination of protein and carbohydrates to aid muscle recovery. For this meal you want to eat lean protein along with simple easy to digest carbohydrates. Examples would be tuna, white fish, chicken or turkey along with a some white rice or potatoes. You should aim to eat this meal as close after finishing your session, ideally within 1 to 2 hours. Additionally minimise any fat consumption in this meal, i.e. oil based sauces, butter, cream, as fat slows the digestive process down. By consuming easy to digest sources of protein and carbs, your digestive system is able to process this faster, ensuring nutrients are delivered to aid in your recovery as soon as possible. Alternatively if you need something on the go and making a meal is inconvenient, then I would suggest using either skimmed milk or a high quality plain whey protein powder and consume it with a banana or some honey mixed in.