Protein is one of the most important building blocks of your muscular structure. Eating more of it (in a well-advised manner though) helps you grow muscles faster and burn excess flab. It can also keep your metabolism in check and help you derive energy from your foods. This nutrient is made of amino acids that are the key element of muscles and tissues.
Taken with carbohydrates, it can help you get better results with some restrictions. The difference between protein and carbohydrates is that the former is converted to muscular mass so you could have a lean body shape but the latter gives energy either as a spike or as stored fat.
Opting for a protein-centric diet offers the following benefits:
1. Increases muscles faster
2. Strengthens bones
3. Keeps you satiated
4. Boosts metabolism
5. Improves digestive system
6. Helps repair body tissues faster
7. Improves muscular coordination
8. Maintains pH and blood sugar levels
9. Increases oxygen in the bloodstream
10. Provides energy
Taken with adequate nutrients like minerals (like phosphorous, potassium, and calcium) and fiber, protein can help you derive enough energy for your fitness schedules. As you continue to work out, you would find better results with your weight loss goals and improvement of body shape.
For vegetarians and eggetarians, the choices are way more as compared to their non-vegetarian counterparts. They can choose to go with some of the best foods that can help build muscle faster and achieve more promising results in a much smaller time frame.
Most fitness experts agree that with all factors being equal, a vegetarian diet is easier to maintain and digest. It is also less at par as compared to its non-vegetarian counterparts in terms of cost and nutritional value.
Here are some of the best high-protein foods that you can eat for your strength training and other fitness goals:
A protein-packed whole grain. Full of all 9 essential amino acids, it is high in fiber, is gluten-free, and is easy to digest. Here’s how to add quinoa to your daily diet.
The smartest combination out of all, which is rich in heart-healthy fats, fiber, and protein. Add a handful to protein-packed Greek yogurt, fiber-filled salads, or just enjoy an ounce of them raw before a workout.
The most common source of protein are egg whites but what about the yellow yolk? The yolk contains essential fatty acids, folate, iron, calcium, and fat-soluble vitamins. When you eat only the whites, you’re missing out on a lot of nutritional benefits and also the main flavor.
This tasty, quick-cooking fish is packed with 27g protein per 4-ounce cooked fillet and 1.32g omega-3 fatty acids, making it a must-have.
A BMI under 25 makes you underweight and skinny. It is generally assumed that people with such a low value of Body Mass Index have fast metabolism rates and their digestive system discards off their eaten food before the liver has taken the nutrition out of it.
As a result, no matter what they eat, they can’t put on weight. We do not imply the term ‘putting on weight’ in an offensive way, but rather in the sense that they cannot gain enough fat or mass. This may lead them to poor self-esteem and may even lead to some mental issues.
Here are some foods that can help them rise above the issue of faster metabolism and lesser muscle mass. These foods are easy to find and buy and can deliver better results as per your fitness goals.
Everyone knows that spinach is a nutritional powerhouse. The fastest way to load up on nutrients at lunch or mealtime is to toss a handful of baby spinach into soups, sandwiches, and pasta dishes.
1 cup of spinach has about 41 calories with
37% Vitamin A
29% Vitamin C
24% vitamin B2
Avocado is a powerhouse of nutrition and is rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. It is also rich in fat so eating it every day could help you first develop some flab to build your fitness on.
1 cup of avocado at 233 calories contains:
24% vitamin C
20% vitamin B5
19% vitamin B6
You can try this recipe made of Quinoa and Avocado for Fitness, Health, and Weight Loss to get started with your fitness regime today.
These hairy monsters are majorly packed with vitamin C. It is a potent antioxidant that plays a crucial role in helping your liver detoxify your blood and keep a myriad of other bodily functions moving along smoothly. You can eat them with their skin and their fury exterior softens as soon as you start to chew.
1 kiwi is only 46 calories with:
12% of Vitamin C
Tip: You may also enjoy kiwi in the form of gazpacho or sweet & spicy salads with your chips.
Cherries are rich in water content. The human body retains water content derived from fruits for a longer time as compared to drinking water because the former contains glucose and fructose. They are rich in phytonutrients, particularly anthocyanin which is a powerful antioxidant that is good for the liver.
Further, 1 cup of cherries at 90 calories contains:
16% vitamin C
With their enhanced tissue repair properties, these seeded fruits can reduce your body cramps and aches so you could work out longer.
Mushrooms are loved by all health-conscious people as they are impossibly low in calories, have anti-cancer compounds, and are rich in Niacin (vitamin B3). They together keep BP, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels in check.
3 cups of mushrooms contain (on an average):
25% of vitamin B2
16% of niacin
A part of the cruciferous family, broccoli is rich in fiber, vitamins, iron, and potassium. It can resist carcinogens and helps build stronger bones. It is also easy to cook, has a mild flavor, and is easy to find.
1 cup of broccoli has 30 units of calories with:
20% of your daily recommended value (DRV) of vitamin C
19% of Vitamin K
As mentioned above, it would be best to develop for a skinny or underweight person some flab or mass before they start toning it for a leaner body. Their lower BMI should not have a say in how they want to look and feel, and including these high-protein vegetarian foods for muscles could help them get over that hiccup.
The above list of protein-rich foods also works if you have some budget constraints, you can surely eat these cheap muscle-building foods for better results. Here’s a complete list:
1. Greek Yogurt
6. Milk and dairy products
10. Cottage Cheese
12. Brown rice
15. Peanut Butter
You should stay away from foods that are rich in bad calories. These may include the following:
1. Fast foods
2. Cola drinks
3. French fries
4. Processed flour
5. Bakery foods
6. Canned fruit juices
7. Ice cream
8. Artificially sweetened foods
Our healthcare experts also advise you to stay away from processed foods (veg or non-veg) because they can also cause issues with your metabolism rate. If you are not underweight, it may cause you to become fat and may even cause several health disorders like diabetes and thyroid.
You cannot make more muscles without eating good food and doing strength training. We ask you to follow a personalized diet plan as per your fitness goals, and back it up with a proper fitness schedule. It is also important to take proper sleep and stay away from stress.
One of the most essential types of exercise to maintain a healthy weight is Strength Training. As you gain muscles, you’ll also experience improved balance, flexibility, coordination, and bone health. Besides the resistance bands and running shoes, there’s another essential element involved in building muscle called discipline.
Don’t forget to check out: How Cardios and Strength Training make an awesome team together?
You would need more time to get the muscles of your lower body in shape. These are the strongest muscles in our bodies and you would thus need more time to align them with your fitness plan. Here’s how something as simple as stair climbing can make a difference to the game.
Here are some smart diet tips to help you in healthy muscle building:
Every gram of fat has nine units of calories, which is more than double in comparison to carbs and proteins. Does it mean that it is twice as difficult to burn off? This depends on how you take it. When it comes to strength training, fat is doubly efficient in providing your body with energy.
Fat is also necessary for nutrient absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E, and K). So, if you’re going to eat fats or carbs, make sure to choose heart-healthy fats like monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats, and omega-3 fats.
Check out: Fats And Calorie - How Much In A Day?
There’s a limit to how much protein the body can use to build muscle at any given time. One should not take more than 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. We also recommend that you do not eat proteins in excess because they won’t be stored in your body for energy like carbs and fats.
If they do not get discarded, they can cause issues in your digestive system. You could experience nausea, constipation, pains, fever, or any such symptom.
It is important to stay hydrated. When muscles aren’t well-hydrated, it impacts the production of amino acids too. This leads to a drop in performance because your energy levels are low and if you exercise in this situation, you could hurt yourself. Drinking an adequate amount of water will keep your GI tract healthy, and it also helps you feel full.
PS: Here’s a free resource that you can check out about making abdominal muscles (abs) faster!
When it comes to proteins, you should only consume naturally occurring foods. They are safer, deliver better value, and do not offer any side effects. Drinking protein drinks or taking health supplements may give you an edge for some time, but they will only cause long-term issues.
We thus recommend that you prefer seafood, lean meats, nuts, and dairy products instead of any synthetic foods. It would also be worthwhile to consult your healthcare expert before taking any supplement because such foods may adversely affect your liver and kidneys.
PS: Equally important is the concept of portions (or rather its control). Here’s what makes it such an indispensable part of your diet chart (and to maintain weight).
When it comes to muscle building, carbs are essentially important. Foods rich in carbs should be eaten at breakfast to replenish the energy that gets broken down and released during sleep. This nutrient is broken down into glucose to stimulate insulin, a hormone that transports amino acids to muscle tissues.
It is advised that one should go for high-quality carbohydrates because refined carbohydrates can cause a blood glucose imbalance. You should take whole grains, beans, vegetables, and fruits that are rich in fiber, minerals, and nutrients but keep blood sugar steady.
You should get in touch with your trainer for a personalized workout and diet plan for the results that you are seeking with your fitness program. This would also help you get a clear picture of where exactly you are and what you should do to get in shape faster. Meanwhile, you may choose from the list of high-protein and high-fiber foods to build some strength for yourself.
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