Men have higher levels of testosterone hormone which, among other functions, helps regulate muscle mass.
Some men may want to increase their muscles to improve their appearance, to decrease their risk of diseases such as heart disease, to burn calories or even to sleep better. Whatever your reason is for wanting to build your muscles, nutrition is as important as working out.
Some men believe that going to the gym is all they need do to build strong muscles. However, you cannot get the best results if your diet is not one that supports muscle growth. Without a proper diet, your progress towards building muscles will be stalled.
What foods will help you to build strong muscles?
High-protein foods are key when it comes to gaining muscle because proteins act like bodybuilders. Some of the best protein sources are:
- Eggs: They are good bodybuilders that provide the body with amino acids which help in muscle building. They also provide B vitamins which help to produce energy for the body among many other functions.
- Fish such as tuna, tilapia and salmon: They are also helpful in muscle building and in the body’s overall health. One of the nutrients they provide is omega-3 fatty acids which are important in muscular health. Omega-3 also increases the gaining of muscle during workout.
- Beans or Legumes: They are high not only in protein, but also in fibre which is important in maintaining a healthy and normal bowel movement.
- Lean red meat: Apart from protein, it provides other important nutrients like B vitamins, zinc and iron.
- Dairy products like milk, and
- Protein powders.
It is not only protein that helps in muscle growth. The following foods also help in muscle growth:
- Carbohydrates, which can be found in yoghurt, oatmeal, whole grains like brown rice and cereals, potatoes and corn, among other starchy vegetables.
- Fruits, like oranges, bananas, blueberries, apples and watermelons provide the nutrients and energy that is important for muscle building.
- Fats are also helpful in muscle growth and not all fats lead to fat gain. Taking dietary fats provides energy to fuel exercise and strenuous activities.
Other reasons why fats are important for muscle growth include:
- Saturated fats increase testosterone production which is essential for muscle growth, and
- Helps the body to absorb vitamins and so promoting growth and development.
Fats can be found in fatty fish like salmon and sardines, avocados, cheese, coconut, whole eggs, nuts and extra virgin olive oil, among other foods.
Some people may consider using supplements to bulk their muscles. However, before resorting to that, you should try to get your energy and protein from natural sources.
Water is also a very important part of the diet as it helps the body to remain hydrated. Hydration helps in digestion and increases energy level and strength.
Exercise is a good way to gain muscle but without a proper diet, your muscle gain efforts may be limited. Ensure you eat foods that will help your body get the energy you need for exercising and that will support muscle gain.