It’s not often we as a society discuss purposefully gaining weight rather than losing weight, but there are situations in which it is appropriate to do so. Eating a well-balanced diet and exercising consistently are key parts of a healthy lifestyle and routine, and should yield a fairly consistent weight. There are a lot of factors beyond your weight that contribute to your health, and being thin is not necessarily a sign of overall vitality. You can be thin but lack certain vitamins and minerals, or bulked up on steroids without fueling your body with healthy fats. Sometimes people find themselves underweight due to a number of potential underlying conditions, or are interested in bulking up in the gym and need a way to safely supplement their diet. This is where mass gainer supplements come in.
What Are Mass Gainer Supplements?
First off, I am not a healthcare professional, nor am I a fitness or nutrition expert. This article is purely meant to spark interest, any health decisions about adding or subtracting supplements from your diet should be done alongside your doctor. That being said, if you want to get swole in the gym mass gainers are a great way to do it. Additionally, if you need to put on some weight post-surgery or health scare — they’re an efficient way to do it without stuffing your face with nachos and donuts. Mass gainers tend to be made with a mix of healthy fats, proteins and carbohydrates that are concentrated, so you get more calories from them than you would a standard meal or protein shake. They’re a healthier way to gain weight rather than overindulging on fattening foods, and provide a relatively clean energy source for your body to use. Let’s walk through a few of the options out there and explore what’s worth noting about each one. Here are the best mass gainer supplements for 2021.
1. Optimum Nutrition Mass Weight Gainer
This Optimum Nutrition mass gainer supplement has over 35,000 (!) reviews on Amazon and an average rating of 4.5/5 stars so you know it’s good. Each two-scoop serving has 1,250 calories and 50 grams of protein for fueling intense workouts and helping your body build muscle post-lift. This blend also has Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin D for immune support and Vitamin E. Each serving also has over 250 grams of carbohydrates for some easily accessible energy, and the mix of 25 vitamins and minerals also contains creatine and glutamine — two excellent substances for recovery. This powder is easy to mix into smoothies, shakes or even overnight oats and at less than $50 for a 12-pound bag it’s also one of the most affordable mass gainer supplements we found.
2. BSN TRUE-MASS Weight Gainer
This mass gainer supplement comes from the BSN Store for nutrition and supplements, and has slightly fewer calories per serving if you’re looking for something in the 1,200 range with 50 grams of multi-source protein and 215 grams of carbohydrates as well. The carbs primarily come from rolled oats, so you know you’re not fueling your body with junk, and the mix also contains BCAAs and other essential amino acids to aid in recovery. The ingredients aren’t the cleanest, but users noted that it works fast and the taste is solid. Reviewers noted that those with fast metabolisms will appreciate its calorie boost, and how the texture isn’t as chalky as other supplements.
3. Chocolate Naked Mass Weight Gainer
If you’re looking to gain weight now and fast — this calorie-rich mass gainer from NAKED is the way to go. It contains simple, clean ingredients and has 1,360 calories per serving. The calories, 50 grams of protein and 251 grams of carbs all come from a mix of Naked whey, Naked Casein, organic maltodextrin, organic coconut sugar and organic raw cacao. You don’t need to pump yourself up with chemicals to gain weight if you prefer to eat clean — and this supplement will help you do it. The carbohydrates are clean source and the whey and casein provide healthy amino acids so your body can synthesize the proteins effectively.
4. Dymatize Super Mass Gainer Protein Powder
This mass gainer supplement powder comes out to $0.26/ounce, a bargain compared to other options, but still packs a powerful punch with 1,280 calories per serving, 52 grams of protein, 10.7 grams of branched chain amino acids and 5.1 grams of Leucine that aids in muscular protein synthesis. This mix also contains 245 grams of carbs per serving and 17 vitamins and minerals to help support healthy muscle tissue, consistent recovery and balanced nutrition. It comes in a few different flavors including rich chocolate, gourmet vanilla and cookies & cream — all of which contain the same nutritional benefits.
5. MuscleMeds Carnivor Mass Diet Supplement
Reviewers raved about the taste of this MuscleMeds chocolate fudge mass gainer supplement. It’s a 100% beef protein isolate weight gainer, so if you’re vegan you’ll probably want to opt for another option. It has over 700 calories per serving, as well as 50 grams of protein, 125 grams of carbs and low fats as well. It’s not as concentrated as other options, so if you’re looking for a protein powder/mass gainer hybrid it’s a good choice. The perk of using beef protein? It’s easier on the stomach through being lactose, sugar, dairy and gluten-free. Beef protein is also capable of delivering high concentrations of amino acids for rapid absorption fast.
Read more: Best Pre-Workout Supplements
6. Naked Mass Vegan Mass Gainer Protein Powder
Needless to say, you don’t have to consume a bunch of beef in order to gain weight — this vegan mass gainer supplement from Naked will do the trick. It’s made with only three ingredients — pea protein powder, rice protein powder and organic maltodextrin (made from gluten-free organic tapioca). It’s a clean blend that’s free of soy, GMOs, gluten, dairy and artificial sweeteners. Each serving of this vegan protein powder contains 1,230 calories — just as much as some of the other meat-derived brands, as well as 50 grams of protein, 248 grams of complex carbs and 10.3 grams of BCAA’s. It has the essential amino acids your body needs for protein synthesis and does it free of lactose so you won’t upset your stomach.
7. Rivalus Clean Gainer
NO BANNED SUBSTANCES
If you’re a professional athlete looking to put on weight and want to ensure you’re going to pass every drug and substances test, this mass gainer supplement is a safe bet. It only has 560 calories per serving, but it contains essential fats from flax, avocado and sunflower. It contains 30 grams of a dairy protein blend and 90 grams of eight-source complex carbs. It contains only eight grams of sugar and comes in a wide variety of flavors including chocolate, chocolate peanut butter, cinnamon toast cereal, s’mores and vanilla.
8. Mutant Mass Weight Gainer Protein Powder
Branched chain amino acids are a critical component in any protein or mass gainer powder because they aid your muscles in synthesizing proteins in order to grow. This mass gainer powder contains 12.2 grams of BCAAs as well as 192 grams of clean carbs, 12 grams of fat and 26.1 grams of EAAs per serving. It also contains 1100 calories and 56 grams of high-quality protein from whey isolate and a casein blend. It’s made from natural whole foods like barley, sweet potato, rolled oats, avocado, coconut oil, flaxseed, pumpkin seed and sunflower oil.
9. Build-XT Muscle Builder Supplement
Unlike all the other options, this mass gainer supplement comes in pill form if you prefer to toss it back with your other vitamins rather than consume it in liquid form. It’s a powerful muscle builder that’s meant to be taken daily to fuel lean muscle growth. It can also increase your power output and muscle endurance in the gym. This anabolic muscle builder contains PeakO2, ElevATP and Astragin — three ingredients designed to improve healthy muscle growth in just two capsules a day. In addition to protein powder, this brand also makes our favorite fat-burning supplement.
10. MuscleTech Mass Gainer Protein Powder
HIGHEST NUMBER OF CALORIES
This Mass-Tech Extreme 5-in-1 mass gainer supplement has a whopping 2,000 calories per serving and 80 grams of protein, 400 grams of carbs, 8.2 grams of L-leucine and 10 grams of creatine monohydrate. It also has 20 vitamins and minerals for giant strength and size gains. The 400 grams of carbs are formulated to spike insulin levels and trigger muscle glycogen replenishment. This mass gainer supplement also contains 10 grams of creatine to increase strength and ATP levels, a higher amount than any other mass gainer we found.
11. Body Fortress Super Advanced Mass Gainer
This mass gainer has a mix of pre-, intra- and post-workout supplements to help your body prepare, execute and recover from even the most grueling of training sessions. It’s got 1000 calories per serving as well as 40 grams of protein, and contains zero gluten and zero aspartame as well. It contains a key mix of nutrients for helping your body gain muscle and a high concentration of BCAAs as well. It also sells at a decent price that won’t break the bank, making this a great mass gainer pick.
12. Genius Muscle Builder Growth Optimizer for Men & Women
This mass gainer powder costs a bit more than others on this list, but comes formulated with three different clinically-studied ingredients. It’s made with Peak02, a certified-organic Ayurvedic mix of six different mushroom strains that supposedly help with power and endurance, and decreasing exhaustion. It also contains ingredients HMB and Vitamin D that, when combined, are formulated to help decrease muscle protein breakdown, build lean muscle, improve muscle function and strength, help with mobility and aid in faster recoveries as well. All of this scientific backing leads to a higher price tag, but if you’re willing to spend a bit more it may be a worthwhile investment.
13. Universal Nutrition Store Real Gains Weight Gainer
BEST LEAN OPTION
Many of the mass gainers on this list are more than 1,000 calories per serving, but this one is made for those who don’t want to pack on a ton of weight all at once. It’s got 600+ calories per serving, making it a leaner choice while still offering a weight gain solution to power lifters, wrestlers, and those in recovery from all sorts of ailments. The formula is designed to be easy to digest, with fiber and inulin included, and is easy to mix in water or your favorite smoothie. The carbs are fast and slow digesting, so you can drink it before, during and after a workout, and it contains healthy fats from MCTs and EFAs as well.
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