Planning to build some serious muscle?
Wondering how I guessed that? It’s pretty obvious that your urge to pack on some serious muscle brings you here. High five! You’re at the right place. I’ve got no doubt that you must be hitting that iron hard at the gym, pumping up your muscles and dreaming about that sexy beach bod. That’s a beautiful thought to have.
But, do you know the mechanics to unleash the Hulk?
It’s simple! You gotta eat protein to stay lean.
Why is protein needed to build muscle?
It’s basic science—protein is the basic building block of muscles. The amino acids which make up the protein are responsible for building, repairing and maintaining the muscle tissue. Without protein, it’s hard to imagine the basic structure of the muscle. In fact, hair and nails are also made up of protein. By now, you surely know that it’s pretty important.
It’s also important to note that protein is a ‘macronutrient’, which means the body needs it in relatively large amounts. But, the human body does not store protein and thus there is no source to derive it when the body needs a fresh supply.
If you’re already working hard at the gym with minimal or no results, there is surely a glitch in there. Do remember that its 75% diet and 25% workout if you’re aiming for some serious muscle.
Which foods are packed with protein?
You need to eat right to gain right! It’s that simple! So, which foods have the protein you need?
Have a look!
The eggs provide the best value for your buck if you’re looking for high-quality protein. They contain all the 9 essential amino acids, vitamin D, choline and the right kind of fat. Make sure you include eggs in your breakfast to start your day with a protein boost.
There is a good reason why chicken is considered a staple food for muscle gain. It is an amazing source of high-quality protein.
Chicken also contains a healthy amount of vitamin B6 and niacin. Though, make sure you don’t spice it up too much to deny the benefits of protein it has to offer.
Wondering how protein is supplied to your muscles while you are asleep? It is with the help of casein—a slow digesting protein and you’ll be glad to know that cottage cheese has it in abundance. Casein is ideally suited for times when the body requires a constant supply of protein. Additionally, cottage cheese is also a great source of calcium, vitamin B12, and other vital nutrients.
The best thing about dairy sources is that they contain both fast digesting whey protein and the slow digesting casein. Research shows that such a mixture is ideal for building lean muscle mass.
The best thing about Greek yogurt is that it contains almost double the amount of protein in regular yogurt. Also, it is an awesome snack which can be consumed after workouts or during any time of the stay to keep the protein level in check.
The prime reason to include nuts in this list is that they are easily portable. Of course, they do have the protein but the fact that you can snack them up at any odd time of the day makes them such an asset. Include almonds, cashew nuts and walnuts in your snack routine and it’s good enough for the day.
While the main focus should be on deriving protein from the whole foods but there are situations when protein shakes are very helpful. The whey protein shakes are particularly popular in the gym industry owing to the fact that they offer a quick supply of easily digestible protein. It’s a known fact that drinking a glass of whey protein shake right after the workout gives a huge protein boost to the body.
Tuna is not only a powerhouse of protein but also has high content of vitamin A and vitamin B including niacin, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12. This combination is known to increase exercise performance and maintain optimal muscle health.
How much protein is adequate?
Now, that you know the ideal sources of protein, it does not mean that you start munching and gulping down whatever you see. You’ve got the brains to figure that it can be downright foolish. It is expected that you eat just the right amount to gain derive maximum benefits. Excess of anything is bad.
So, how much is too much?
The US Department of Health and Human Services states that:
– For children aged 2 to 6, older people and most women, 2 servings for a total of 5 ounces are adequate for a full day.
-Teenagers, active men, and women ideally require 2 servings for a total of 6 ounces is enough.
– Ideally, 0.38 grams of protein for every pound of your body weight is a great parameter to analyze your protein levels.
If you’re still with me, I am sure if you combine adequate exercise with a protein-packed diet, the muscles would be oozing to get noticed!
By the way, don’t forget to hit your abs, the ladies do love it!