10 Fundamental Eating Habits for Muscle Gain
Posted on March 05 2020
Building muscles is not what it used to be; a way to impress the girls. Instead, it is a serious sport and it can be a means of staying healthy. Building muscles takes a lot of exercise, which doctors say is good for overall health and for keeping weight under control. However, there is more to gaining muscle than the exercises. Another important part of it is what is eaten.
Protein: If you’ve ever watched the pre-game meal of many pro football players, meat was probably the main thing on the menu. Protein is vital to both building muscle and health. However, it is important to choose protein wisely.
There are three schools of thought. One is basically the carnivore diet. Meat is central to it, with other things on the side… maybe. Even those who aren’t building muscle can ascribe to this diet. Keto is a good example. Second is to skip meat all together. There are other sources of protein, and it is friendlier to the body and to the planet to skip meat.
The school of thought that seems to work the best is all things in moderation. Choose lean cuts of meat or fatty fish and keep it to one serving a day or less. A serving is about the size of a pack of cards.
Protein drinks: These are very popular. Brands like Muscle Milk come in ready to drink bottles or huge plastic jars of powder. If you wish to go this route, it is best to choose one that does not have soy in it. Soy can cause reproductive cancer and is best avoided.
Raw fruit: Why raw? It has more available nutrients than the preserved counterparts do. The only exception to this is frozen berries. They tend to have more antioxidants once frozen than they do fresh and raw. When choosing frozen berries, it is wise to read the ingredient label to avoid excess sugar.
Raw vegetables: This is partly for the same reason. There is a bit more to it. If you consider a raw carrot versus a cooked one, you can see that it will take more energy to chew the raw one. There is no zero energy food, but too many calories are not a good thing.
Whole grains: There is a trick to this one. When shopping for whole grains, read the ingredients label carefully. The package may say “whole wheat” in big letters on the front of the package. Chances are good that when you read, the first ingredient is white flour. Fourth or fifth there may be some whole wheat.
If you look for packages that say “multi-grain,” you may be closer. However, they can still trick you. Always read the labels of everything. The same holds true for pasta, oats and any other whole grain food item.
Snacks: Yes, snacks are useful in this. In fact they are vital both pre and post workout. Like any other part of a diet for muscle gain, the snacks have to be chosen with care. Here is where the protein powders and/or bars can come in handy. A pre-workout snack should have some protein and something like fresh fruit or vegetables. After the workout, more protein plus carbs are a good plan.
Water: Technically this is a drink, but hydration is extremely important, especially when trying to build muscles. For those who are sedentary, a gallon of water per day is adequate. However, building muscle means training, and training vigorously. That causes a lot of perspiration, which dehydrates quickly.
There is such a thing as too much water, but talk to a trainer about what is right for your body. In this instance, another sixteen ounces or more may be needed to make up for what is lost due to intense physical activity.
What not to eat?
Just as there are fundamental things to eat when trying to build muscle mass, there are a few to avoid. Most of these should be avoided by everyone, but in particular for those who are working hard to be extremely physically fit.
Excess sodium: There will be a need to have some sodium, as perspiration will rid the body of it. However, high sodium foods are not something to consume. This includes most chips, French fries and so on. Most of these foods are also gratuitous carbs, and would not be wise for that reason.
Energy drinks: It is so tempting; that extra boost of energy. It’s especially tempting after a long day at work and before facing an intense workout. Please, skip the energy drinks. They are more harmful than the boost they provide is worth. Afib, heart palpitations, heart attacks and strokes can lie in that direction.
High fructose corn syrup: The number of products high fructose corn syrup can be found in is astounding. Even savory foods may have some of this sugar. This is one reason that all of us should read every label of every food we want to eat or drink. Even some coffee creamers are guilty in this area.
High fat foods: Animal protein does come with some fat. However, if you look up the nutrition data on a Big Mac and large fries at McDonald’s, you’ll note that along with the protein comes two days’ worth of fat. Lean protein is much healthier and provides more available nutrients than does its high fat counterparts.
This sounds like it is difficult to employ, but in actuality it is similar to the other changes made in habits for the goal of building muscles. This is an activity that calls for a great deal of self-discipline, which will benefit those who work for it in other aspects of life.
Finally, healthy eating and a strategic workout plan can help you gain muscles. However, why not build this muscle faster and more effectively by trying out a muscle gain supplement? You may see delayed results from working out or eating well. One of the reasons can be low testosterone levels. But, this doesn’t have to slow you down. Learn more about Dynamism Labs testosterone boosting supplements for men