T Nation

Is a Mass Gainer a Good Substitute?


#1

Hello all;

I have been considering taking a mass gainer as a good substitute for protein shakes. The dilemma I have is I am trying to put on some serious size, I do my best when it comes to eating at home but sometimes I feel it isn't enough. At times I am extremely busy so I miss critical times when I could have fit in another meal (studies/academic work).

My friend recommended I take a mass gainer as he saw himself put on weight faster, but I also noticed that he has some fat around his belly area. The same happened to me a 2 years ago when I used to workout. Is there a workaround to the belly fat, or does this mean I am not training hard enough or just mass gainers are not that great?

I would like some recommendations on what to do, should I go protein and use it more times per day? But I may not be able to make the surplus required calories and carbs etc... per day.

Thanks in advance.

Also is there any pre-workout supplement which will help? I hear stuff about Plazma and I really want to get it, but I just feel more comfortable with getting supplements from a store :S Any workarounds or should I just go for it?


#2

You will not be able to put on serious size if you are scared of some belly fat. Gaining serious size will require serious eating, that means big calorie intake.

And caloric foods are mainly carbs & fat. You will require protein, fats and carbs. That means you will gain fat. Some approaches like Intermittent Fasting claim to be able to do a clean bulk… But at best, I saw very effective body recomposition but no serious size gains.

This being known, gainers are an effective approach. They are mainly composed of protein (sometimes low grade) + carbs. However, they are expensive. You can do better by using whey and big shakes (bulking breakfasts, for instance, with 700 - 1000 Kcal shakes), using oatmeal, milk, whey, casein, extra peanut butter, bananas, etc…

You can find recipes by searching “bulking shakes” or thing like that. This is often less expensive than gainers. Do your own !


#3

[quote]Wollveren wrote:
The dilemma I have is I am trying to put on some serious size, I do my best when it comes to eating at home but sometimes I feel it isn’t enough.[/quote]
What’s your height, current weight, and general bodyfat (not a percentage, just a description - skinny, lean, a little muscular, sorta fat, etc.)?

What, exactly, did you eat yesterday?

Mass gainers are just liquid calories, the same as eating food. If your friend took a shake and gained fat (depending on how much fat it really was, some fat is certainly expected when gaining size), it’s no different than if he was just eating too much steak and potatoes.

A good training program and smart nutrition.

If you’re inconsistent in your nutrition, you’ll get inconsistent results. Period. If shakes (like a weight gainer) help you with consistency, then they’ll be useful, but really, lots of people are busy and still manage to eat well. A bit of planning will do wonders.

That’s your choice, but Plazma is pretty much the most effective workout shake around. A bunch of people have been using it and writing about their results.


#4

If you want to get big (or bigger at least) you need to eat food. I agree with the posts saying make your own shakes using whey and other ingredients. I’ve taken mass gainers before and they do work but you can get the same effect with more benefits by eating or drinking real foods and at less cost.

Pre-prepare your meals before you leave the house for college or work and that way you won’t need to guess the macros in food you buy out.


#5

When it come to the weight gain powders, you get a lot of calories fast sometimes 1000 or more. My recommendation’s with these is pretty age specific, and I’ve had good luck with it. I’ve found with 15-25 age group the weight gainer’s can have a positive effect, when your metabolism is screaming fast.

Once you get a little older these products can/will have a negative effect, at this point in your life quality protein powder’s are a better fit. remember at any age food should come first, but younger guys seem to struggle with this, so anything boosting calories will help. It’s also easier to burn any excess body fat at a younger age, so OP I’d personally try to take your age/metabolism into account.

No matter what you choose to do, try to make a consistent effort to get your diet/food in order. In the mean time while your figuring it all out, keeping your calories high will help to build size, and strength. 2cents


#6

[quote]Wollveren wrote:
Hello all;

I have been considering taking a mass gainer as a good substitute for protein shakes. The dilemma I have is I am trying to put on some serious size, I do my best when it comes to eating at home but sometimes I feel it isn’t enough. At times I am extremely busy so I miss critical times when I could have fit in another meal (studies/academic work).

My friend recommended I take a mass gainer as he saw himself put on weight faster, but I also noticed that he has some fat around his belly area. The same happened to me a 2 years ago when I used to workout. Is there a workaround to the belly fat, or does this mean I am not training hard enough or just mass gainers are not that great?

I would like some recommendations on what to do, should I go protein and use it more times per day? But I may not be able to make the surplus required calories and carbs etc… per day.

Thanks in advance.

Also is there any pre-workout supplement which will help? I hear stuff about Plazma and I really want to get it, but I just feel more comfortable with getting supplements from a store :S Any workarounds or should I just go for it?[/quote]

Plazma is not going to cost you too much more then purchasing from a store, and the results are far better… I would not waste time with a mass gainer, most of those are just pumped full of excess sugar and they mark it as carbs, just crap all around from my experience. Like another poster mentioned you can always just add things to your protein shake, that will get you far better results and ingredients… Things like oats, peanut butter, certain oils, blueberries etc… You just need to eat in excess of what you burn enough to put on mass at a steady pace. If you over do it you will gain excessive fat, but likewise if you eat too little you will be burning off too much. You need to get an idea of the macros you are consuming each day and keep note of how much you need to gain, maintain, and lose weight for each respective goal… Keep in mind that this changes based on your composition as well, so adjust for that.


#7

First, im going to echo that if you are scared of getting a little soft during a bulk, then you’re going to have a hard time putting on any serious size without some “assistance”

Second, its kinda hard without naming specific brands, but mass gainers can definitely be a useful tool. I use them pretty much the entire time im bulking. Sometimes its just too damn hard to eat as many calories as is needed to grow and still keep your diet clean. (In my case i need an average of over 4000 calories a day to see any weight gain on a clean bulk diet)

Find something that isnt crazy on the calories, with little to no sugar and good carb sources such as oats and barley and you’ll be good.


#8

I’m pretty much in agreement with what everyone else said. It’s good to keep in mind that, despite what reader’s digest and all the magazines my mom reads will tell you, you gain fat everywhere and not just in one place, since yuo’re worried about “bellyfat”. You don’t have to get fat if you’re trying to put on a lot of size fast, but you have to really eat clean.

But don’t rely on anything that is not solid food, just use it for the times when you need to get those calories in and you can’t have a solid meal.


#9

Fuck mass gainers! Save your money and do this when you need a quick meal with tons of calories.

  • 2 scoops protein
  • 2 tabs pb
  • frozen banana
  • .5 cup oats
  • 2 tabs heavy cream (optional)

Mix in blender. enjoy