When it comes to gain muscle mass, diet is not in any way less important than workout. In the overall muscles gaining program, muscle mass diet assumes the most important part. You can train hard, but if you don’t eat “building muscle mass diet”, the time and efforts you spend on training is wasted.
To achieve the physique of your dreams, you need to maintain an eye on your diet along with workout. Your body depends greatly on nutrients from the foods that you eat to help create an environment contributing to build muscle mass. Although there are numerous different foods that can help put on muscle mass, but you need to select the right foods that contain various nutrients required for muscles growth, so that you do not miss any important muscle. Mainly what you need to include:
(i) Protein to help repair and build muscles and other body tissues
(ii) Fats to boost the vital hormones and ease inflammation
(iii) Phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals to prop up general health
(iv) Overall nutrient dense calories to make available enough energy
Diet For Building Muscle Mass
What to eat to gain muscle mass? Here is my list of the top eleven foods that should be included in your diet to build muscle mass fast and gain strength. Make sure these foods are included into your weekly muscle mass diet menu, if you want to maximize your muscle gains.
1. Eggs: Eggs are packed with many key muscle-building nutrients such as 7-8 grams high quality protein per egg, nine essential amino acids (omega-3 fatty acids), choline, the right kind of fat, vitamin D and minerals. It can be cooked in many ways, so one cannot be bored of having them every day.
Especially, the egg white has protein to fat ratio of 60:1 that makes it indisputably one of the purest forms of protein in the world. That’s why every successful body builder includes egg whites into his/her diet plan for building muscles. This amazing food has a really high biological value – consequently a substantial amount of protein absorbed from egg white is quickly used by your body for protein synthesis. On top of all that, egg white has very low amount of carbohydrates.
To conclude, eggs (especially egg whites) are the most value for money and a serious muscles building food. And good news is that they are now considered as harmless for your health, as many recent studies have shown.
2. Chicken / Turkey: To put on muscle, lean meats such as chicken and turkey should always be incorporated in every bodybuilder’s diet. It’s a first-rate source of high quality protein, which is vital for muscle repair and its upkeep, bone health, and weight regulation. The bonus point is that they are particularly low in saturated and trans-fats. You can cook them in so many ways to keep you away from getting bored.
So, go to the store, buy chicken cut into single serving portions that you can season and cook easily.
3. Cottage Cheese: The “gaining muscle mass” ability of cottage cheese is derived from two different constituents. Cottage cheese contains high proportion of relatively pure casein protein, the slow digesting dairy protein, which means it is ideal for muscle maintenance. This is a valuable characteristic particularly for those who have no choice but to go without eating for long periods. Moreover, it’s also a good source of vitamin B12, calcium, and other vital nutrients. Bonus point is that it possesses live cultures, which are good bacteria that helps breakdown and absorb all the nutrients that you need to gain muscle mass. Depending upon your weight, you can select full fat, low fat or nonfat versions.
4. Salmon, Tuna And Other Fish: Salmon is a great all-around food to gain muscle mass as it’s packed with high quality protein, long chain omega-3 fatty acids – EPA and DHA – and besides it is low in other bad fats. The key here is omega-3 fats that are most essential for your heart health and they also obstruct muscle breakdown, at the same time intensifying the anabolic capability of amino acids. Protein and omega-3 fatty acids present in salmon also help in building and repairing muscle tissue. It’s also a rich source of many other essential nutrients like selenium, B12, vitamin D, niacin. The bonus point is it reduces cholesterol also.
We recommend cold water fish such as salmon, tuna and sardines as they are rich source of protein and healthy fats. If you don’t relish fish, consider having fish oil.
Note: Although you need to eat foods that are low in fat, but fish is an exception to this rule. Whereas you need to stay away from saturated and trans-fats, but your body nevertheless requires vital fatty acids such as omega-3 to help increase muscle mass.
5. Beans / Legumes / Lentils: Beans / Legumes / Lentils can be your secret muscle building foods. When people think of foods that build muscles, various lean meats instantly come to their mind, but then they don’t appreciate beans / legumes / lentils are also extremely nutritious source of protein, fiber and slow digesting carbs. Fiber is not only necessary to support regular and normal healthy bowel movements, but also essential for a proper insulin response, which is crucial for building muscles. Both of these two functions help in utilizing different nutrients and supplements ingested by bodybuilders.
Kidney beans are especially a well-liked choice because one cup of cooked kidney beans supplies about 14 grams each of both protein and fiber. Chickpeas can be your choice for slow acting carbs and fiber, as it contains 45 grams and 12 grams of slow acting carbs and fiber respectively.
So, don’t ignore beans / legumes / lentils as they are inexpensive, versatile and have a long shelf-life. You can mix them with brown rice, eat along with whole-grain bread, sprinkle over a salad or eat them as a standalone side dish.
6. Lean Beef: Beef is at top of the list of foods to build muscle mass. Why? Because it is loaded with muscles building cocktail of all good things that lead to gaining fast muscle mass growth. A three-ounce serving of lean beef has approximately 154 calories, still it provides various nutrients such as essential B-vitamins, creatine, iron, zinc, etc. On top of all that, it makes available high quality protein (not all proteins are equal), and large amount of amino acid that acts with insulin to stimulate fast muscle growth. Beef also has a good combination of monounsaturated fat, which is good for heart health, and saturated fat that maintain healthy testosterone levels.
7. Slow Digesting Carbohydrates Or Low Glycemic Carbs: You don’t need only protein to build muscle mass. You also need a good source of slow-acting carbs to increase and maintain your muscles. Slow-burning carbohydrates contained in foods like oatmeal and sweet potatoes can be your best pre-workout snacks because while you are exercising, muscle glycogen (carbs kept within your muscles) acts as the chief source of fuel. As glycogen levels decline due to hard training, your intensity starts dwindling and more critically, your body begins to feed on your muscles for obtaining energy thus causing them to degenerate. Thus what you crucially need along with protein is a consistent source of energy such as slow-burning carbohydrates. And they are a boon for those who are looking for weight loss also along with gaining muscle mass as they cause enhanced fat loss as well.
8. Nuts: Nuts are a must for any hard gainer striving to gain weight. Just one ounce of cashew or almonds provides roughly 150-170 calories. Nuts are the ideal combination of protein, fats letting you intake extra calories you require without having fear of increasing your middle. Amongst all the nuts, almonds offer the best blend of various nutrients.
9. Whey Protein: To build pounds of muscles, it is normally recommended that the protein intake should be about 1.0 to 1.2 grams of protein per pound of body weight. That’s a lot of protein to be consumed from whole food sources. This is the reason why whey protein is an extremely important supplement that is more than worthy of being included in this list. It’s easy to prepare and provides a quick and handy source of protein at a reasonable price. Professional bodybuilders normally intake it (for example you can make a shake) as soon as they wake up, immediately after workout and before heading to bed to make sure that they get the required protein, enabling their body to attain some serious muscle gains. But for those of us non-bodybuilders, just consuming it immediately after the workouts is enough to put on muscle mass.
However, do not depend on it totally. Your strategy should be to obtain high quality protein from whole foods, and use whey protein as a supplement.
Also always remember that whole grains are digested more efficiently and supply much more nutrients than refined grains, and thus improve the growth hormone levels that are important for promoting lean muscle growth, fat loss, and sustained energy levels.
10. Fruits And Vegetables: Fruits and vegetables are important because of three main needs to have healthy muscles growth. Firstly, they provide antioxidants that are necessary for the healthy functioning of body’s immunity system. Secondly, they are packed with lots of nutrients, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and beta-carotene, etc. Lastly, your system needs fiber that these fruits and vegetables offer, which is required to flush out the wastes your body does not need.
11. Water: While thinking of muscles building, the first thing comes to mind is meat. But the number 1 and maximum item a body builder need is water. Just consider this fact, 70% of your body is made up of water. Even your muscles, cells tissue and ligaments all contain water. And most significantly, your life-line – blood – also contains largely water. Water also works as a carrier for nutrient transport to your muscle cells. So keep yourself well hydrated all through the day.
Conclusion: If your aim is to put on lean muscle mass onto your frame, you can’t afford to eat “empty calories”, which do nothing except packing mass around your waistline. Just select the right foods from the above list, include them into your daily diet and what you will have is the “best diet for building muscle”.
Is it not very simple? Now that you know what to eat for gaining muscle mass, you only need a muscle mass workout routine!!
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