Meds, Mind, Body & Benefits > Nutrition & HIV

What Can I Do To Gain Weight

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--- Quote from: freaky_dream on April 18, 2013, 01:55:43 AM ---I wonder if the basal metabolic rate for individuals with HIV is higher then non positive people. Has there ever been a study on this done? I would assume that we need extra calories to account for highly active immune system.

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Heya, freaky. Yes. According to the linked WHO report from 2003:

"Energy requirements are likely to increase by 10% to maintain body weight and physical activity in asymptomatic HIV-infected adults…"

"During symptomatic HIV […] energy requirements increase by approximately 20% to 30% to maintain adult body weight."

Nutrient requirements for people living with HIV/AIDS (Links to PDF)

Thanks Oksikoko, I went searching for something similar and could not locate a documented study.


--- Quote from: skycee on March 27, 2013, 12:19:58 AM ---I was about starting a topic on this when I ran into this. I've always had a small frame  and even before diagnosis found it quite hard to put on weight as of may last year I weighed 72kg and now 6months after infection I've lost about 4kg. Looking into a mirror or seeing my shadow makes me cringe and last night I cried myself to sleep after looking at a pix of mine my girl friend recently took. She says I look great buh I can't remember the last time I saw myself this lean.

During my last visit to the doctor to confirm my numbers i told him my concern about the weight loss and he too agreed there might be an underlying factor since ideally I shouldn't be losing weight at this early stages of infection. Cd4 is over 600 and vl is 6702. He adviced I monitor and record my weight weekly and see if we can find anything. 

I rest very well, I think I eat well too and I don't exercise that much and I want my weight back.  :'(

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You could start HAART....  I got whip thin my first my first months HIV, but then I had viral loads in the millions.  Still, active HIV infection with any VL could put a naturally thin person into the very skinny zone.

I have the same concern.  I've been thin as a rail my whole life, even when I was neg.  So I can't afford to lose any more weight.  I don't want to look like a prisoner in a concentration camp.  I've already lost like 10 pounds in 4 months, but hopefully the weight loss will taper off since I started ARV meds.

The problem with the milkshake method is all that sugar and milk protein isn't very good for your immune system.  Yeah, I talk a good talk, but I still eat a lot of ice cream, even though I know it isn't good for me.

Mecch had some good advice.  Eat more avocados and olive oil.  That's a great way to add more calories & healthy fats to your diet.  Dark chocolate has some saturated fat, but you also get the benefits of antioxidants, iron and magnesium.

I also agree that stress may be a factor.  Anxiety is sometimes more draining than running a marathon.  My lowest weight ever was when I worried sick over a dying relative.


--- Quote from: texaninnyc87 on February 12, 2013, 06:48:53 PM ---drink a milkshake with every meal. Use whipping cream instead of milk.

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A few years ago, I was caring for an elderly relative who was suffering from muscle wasting.  I made her high calorie milkshakes every day to help maintain her weight.  I used gainer protein powder for body builder's and mixed it with half & half and a little bit of heavy cream.  Each shake was close to 1000 calories.

(In case anyone is curious, the protein powder I used was MRM All Natural Gainer.  The chocolate flavor is pretty good.  )

Two products I don't recommend are Boost and Ensure.  They're poor quality garbage made with corn syrup.  Ensure is especially awful because it tastes metallic.  If you're going to do milkshakes, you're better off making your own.


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