Melissa Benoit

Maintaining a healthy weight

Healthy Weight

Achieving a healthy weight can be a challenge for those with CF but it is definitely worth the effort. Research shows that those with higher weights have better lung function. A healthy body weight can also help your body to fight lung infections with a stronger immune system.

A person with CF can require 10-30% more calories than someone without CF of the same sex and body type. The body uses up more energy in CF for the following reasons:

- Malabsorption

- Increased energy needed for the work and breathing and coughing

- Fighting lung infection


Check out how many calories you should be consuming with the personalized nutrition tool below:


Please note by clicking the image or link below an excel file will download to your browser. Please enable macros to use the tool.

Tool Screenshot

Click here to download the tool

Eating Strategies to Gain Weight


- Eat frequently. Make time for 3 large meals and 3 snacks every day


- Add a lot of "extras" to foods: sauces, spreads, dips etc.


- Make drinks count, always have high calorie drinks instead of water, coffee, tea or diet pop


- Use larger plates/bowls when you're eating at home


- Snack while watching TV or working on the computer. Carry snacks with you


- Eat larger portions, especially foods that are higher in calories: nuts, cheese, pastas, breads, dried fruit, sweet snacks


- Monitor your weight about every 2 weeks and keep track of it


Click here for sample meal plans, as well as information about G-tube feeds.