African Herbs and tips for weight gain

They say one man’s meat is another man’s poison. While we are more familiar with the struggle to lose weight, a significant number of us are trying to gain some weight. The key to these polar ends of the scale is to find ways to achieve our goals in a healthy and sustainable way. A sustainable regimen or process is important if we want to be able to maintain our achieved state for a long time.

Weight gain as a hot topic may come as a surprise to some but it can be a serious issue for both men and women, boys and girls. There are many lifestyle adjustment, dietary adjustments and workout exercises that are usually for people that want to gain weight and keep it. While these may prove to be effective, some might prefer other methods where we don’t have to exercise as vigorously.

Some of us have been slim all their lives which is the most common scenario for people looking to gain weight while for some, it is due to some health condition or lifestyle changes that make it hard to get back to their previous weight.

In Nigeria and many parts of Africa, there is less stigma for being fat and most people prefer to have a little more weight on their bodies which is not the case if we go by standards in other parts of the world.

It is easy for people to say just eat more when you are trying to gain weight which is not the best method for weight gain. it is safe to assume that most people are not starving themselves then complaining of their lack of weight gain. Sometimes we need more help if we are trying to gain weight beyond the “just eat more advise”. Let us look at some of the factors that prevent us from gaining weight:

  • Fast metabolism
  • Family history and genes
  • Health conditions
  • High Physical activity
  • Improper nutrition
  • Poor eating habits etc.

Foods for weight gain

We cannot speak on weight gain or weight loss without discussing food. Food and eating habits are the major contributors of weight gain or weight loss in the body. When trying to gain weight, it is important that we are conscious of our eating habits because when eating habits are not right, even with the right herb, exercise, diet or supplement, we will not gain as much as we could have.

When trying to gain weight, it is important that we eat foods that contain protein and fats. These two food types are critical to weight gain success. Every meal, try and incorporate a protein or a fat. Both will be better. Proteins include, milk, yoghurt, fish, meats, eggs etc. fats from sources such as nuts (groundnut, coconut, cashew nut, pumpkin seeds (used for making egusi) etc.) healthy fats from oily fish (e.g mackerel)), oils, butter,  etc. 

We should also maintain our 3 regular daily meals with some snack time in-between and not skip meals. Try and stop skipping meals if you have that habit. Other habits like drinking water before a meal is a total no-no. This is because it will make you feel full and satisfied when you start eating faster. We should also avoid eating foods that will lower our appetite such as pineapples which is a known appetite downer, avoid over eating and eating at the wrong times. All these habits can help you in your weight gain journey. You can read more about weight gaining foods here.

Herbs for weight gain

We should remember that there are people that can simply not gain weight no matter what they do or can only gain a little of it. I hope you are not in that category though. No matter your category, I believe the following will very much help you in your healthy weight gain journey. Let us begin:

Fenugreek seeds

Fenugreek is a popular spice in Desi cultures and here in Nigeria, we often use it for medicinal purposes. It is used by women of different cultures such as North African young women to get plump just before they are wed. Fenugreek can be used for both male and female weight gain without side effects.

How to use:

  • Take a teaspoon twice a day of the fenugreek powder.
  • Take two capsules twice a day morning and evening if using capsules.

Where to buy:

You can buy it in seed or powder form from the super market under the spice section or in the local market in spice shops.

Baabursa Herb

it is a medicinal herb of nigeria that is used to gain weight for both men and women though women are most often the main demography that use it.

How to use: a handful of the herb is boiled with enough water. it is then sieved. The water sieved is then added to paps and used to make porridge for the the person that wants to gain weight.

Where to get it: You can get it at the local herbal market. just ask around for it and you will find someone who has it or who can get it for you.


The list is less than other 10-20 lists of herbs, foods, supplements and lifestyle changes for weight gain posts on the internet. This small list is what I am confident works for people that would like to add a few more kilos to their weight.

Other advices given are not eating foods with high fiber as they keep us full for too long during the day, not drinking water just before a meal, frequent physical exercise that burn energy make you feel hungry quicker, have healthy snack of nuts and such always with you to eat, no skipping breakfast etc. all these practical tips can help you in your journey.

The use of most vitamins, multi-vitamins and fish oil for weight according to many other blogs is not something is have confidence in. you are welcome to try them if you think you they might work for you though. if you do, please share your experience with us in the comment section below so that we can learn form you.

I hope you have learnt something and are ready to try some of the above mentioned suggestions. Do let me know in the comments below how your body responded and whether they helped you or not. If you know more about weight gain or you have been successful in gaining weight before, kindly let us know how in the comments below so that we can learn together.

I hope to see you in the next post that I publish and to receive a notification for it, subscribe to this blog and you will be kept in-the-know.

Have a nice day!

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