Many are those who, having started the muscu, are disappointed not to see appear the expected results. They can train, there seems to be no evolution or it is slow.
Has nature marked them with the sacred seal that prevents them from gaining muscle mass or is the problem completely different? As good optimists as we are, we believe there is an explanation. In most cases, this explanation is in our diet.
Think of your body as a car. He needs fuel to be able to drive. But you can not give it any, in which case it will not work properly and may cause you problems.
The same thing happens with our body. It needs some nutrients to function properly and to bulk. Nutrients are obtained through our diet or supplementation, but not all of them are adequate for the muscle building process. If you ingest 4000 calories a day but 70% of them are carbohydrates, you can be sure that you will not gain any lean body mass, but rather body fat.
Protein is essential for gaining muscle mass
Taking high quality protein is essential for muscle formation. All your meals should revolve around a quality protein intake. It is she who will repair damaged muscle tissue during training and build new tissue.
According to the American College of Sport Medicine, protein consumption by strength training athletes, such as bodybuilding, should be 1.5g to 2g for each body weight [* 1].
Training and diet must be paired. There is no point in doing an intense workout before ordering a pizza. Some even say that diet is more important than own training.
Carbs and Fats must also be part of your diet
Your diet should also contain complex carbohydrates and essential fatty acids . Protein has a constructive function, while carbohydrates and fatty acids provide the energy needed to keep going throughout the workout.
There are studies that show a direct link between dietary fatty acids and testosterone, a hormone that plays an important role in muscle growth.
The best foods to take muscle
Not all sources of protein are of the same level. There is protein of superior quality, in terms of their bioavailability (rate at which the nutrient is absorbed by the blood flow). We present below the best foods to help you gain muscle mass:
The egg protein – albumin – has the highest biological value available, making it one of the best protein choices. Egg yolks are rich in vitamins and minerals important for energy metabolism. On the other hand, the egg yolk also contains Omega 3 DHA (necessary for the proper functioning of the brain and the retina), and omega-6.
It is best not to eat raw egg whites, as they contain inhibitors of trypsin, a digestive enzyme, which must be destroyed by heat.
2) Fat fish
When we talk about fatty fish, we are talking about fish rich in essential fatty acids such as salmon, tuna, mackerel and herring. They all contain essential fatty acids, such as omega 3 . These fatty acids promote the production of testosterone and reduce muscle inflammation.
Tuna, in particular, contains virtually no carbohydrates and can be eaten at meals or mid-morning / afternoon.
3) Red meat
Red meat contains the main amino acids needed for muscle growth. It is rich in iron, vitamin B12 and zinc (a mineral essential for producing testosterone). Moreover, it is rich in creatine, an essential amino acid for the production of energy and which allows to increase its muscular mass.
The negative side of red meat is that it contains a lot of saturated fat and cholesterol. For this, never consume more than two or three times a week.
4) Turkey and chicken
Lean meats are an excellent source of protein of high biological value and must be part of any diet, in order to gain muscle mass. Chicken breast is a food of the most common in the world of bodybuilding, precisely because of its high protein content. However, care should always be taken to remove the skin since it contains a considerable amount of fat and cholesterol.
5) Sweet potato
Forget potatoes and prefer sweet potatoes. It is one of the best sources of complex, slow-absorbing carbohydrates, which allows you to receive energy steadily. It is therefore a very popular food for the meal that follows the training.
In addition to its favorable glycemic index, sweet potato contains a high content of vitamin A, vitamin B and mineral salts such as calcium, iron, potassium and phosphorus.
6) Olive oil
Olive oil is rich in monounsaturated fatty acids, good quality fats that protect the heart. These fats reduce the level of bad cholesterol (LDL) in the blood and increase that of the good cholesterol (HDL). But the benefits of olive oil do not stop there. It also stimulates liver function, regulates blood sugar levels and improves intestinal transit.
People doing weight training should ensure proper functioning of the cardiovascular system. The fats present in olive oil are ideal for this mission.
7) Dried fruits
Dried fruits are a great source of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, so they are inevitably very caloric (600kcal / 100g on average). However, they are also very rich in certain minerals, such as calcium, iron and phosphorus. They possess, in addition, a considerable amount of protein.
The choice is very varied: nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, pine nuts, pistachios and peanuts. Consume 15 units a day, in your salad for example.
Integral pasta is an excellent choice for those looking to gain muscle mass. Fast to cook, rich in complex carbohydrates, in fiber and endowed with a good amount of protein, it is enough to accompany them of minced meat or tuna to revel in a good meal.
9) Cheese and ham
Cheese and ham are two convenient ways to add protein to your breakfast or afternoon tea (with whole wheat bread, for example). Each slice of cheese and ham contains more or less 3 grams of protein. Instead, opt for a lean cheese as it will have less saturated fatty acids. Turkey ham or chicken breast will also be good options.
The water? Yes, water! What is the point of eating a large quantity of meat or fish and going to train while dehydrated?
A bad hydration method will be detrimental to an athlete’s performance, both physically and mentally. The muscles will not give themselves the maximum of their capacity and your concentration will not be the best either. It is essential to be well hydrated.