They say that building muscle is 80% diet and 20% lifting weights.
If you want to build muscle then you’re going to need to eat right.
That means you’re going to need to eat lots of protein because protein will help build and repair your muscles after a workout.
But that doesn’t mean the rest of of your diet can be junk.
You need to eat good sources of carbohydrates and fats.
You are what you eat so if you eat crap then you’re going to look like crap so here are the essential foods you need to be eating if you want to build muscle and look great.
Grass Fed Beef – Beef is a great source of protein and will help you build lean muscle and it’s also full of b-vitamins and minerals such as zinc and iron.
Grass fed beef also contains a high amount of conjugated linoleic acid which is great for recovery and it helps to shed body fat and build lean muscle.
Cottage Cheese – Cottage cheese is a must if you’re trying to build muscle and here’s why..
It’s full of casein protein which is a very slow digesting protein. It’s best to eat this before bed so that your body has a constant source of protein to digest overnight.
This will also help make sure that there is no muscle breakdown while you sleep.
Eggs – Some people try to avoid eggs to avoid cholesterol but what you may not know is that eggs the cholesterol in eggs is actually good for you and helps to break down the bad cholesterol in your body.
Organic Milk – Did you know that organic milk contains both whey and casein protein so you’ll get both fast and slow acting protein by drinking it!
Plus organic milk contains lots of omega-3 fatty acids which are great for your overall health and joints.
Quinoa – Apparently the correct way to say Quinoa is “keenwah” and not “kwinoha”.
I’ve been saying it wrong all this time. 🙂
Anyway however you say it Quinoa is a great source of protein. 100 grams of Quinoa contains 13 grams of protein.
It’s also a slow releasing carb so it provides you with energy throughout the day.
Tuna – Just one can of tuna contains around 30 grams of protein!
On top of that Tuna is super cheap so you may be tempted to just buy tons of tuna. Don’t do this.
Tuna has a high amount of mercury in it which is not good for the body at all. Most experts say that you shouldn’t eat more than 1 can of tuna per day because of this.
To be safe try to only eat 3-6 cans of tuna per week.
Chicken and Turkey – Chicken and turkey are both great sources of protein. 100 grams of chicken and turkey breast contain around 30 grams of protein and unlike tuna you can eat as much of it as you like.
Whey protein – Whey protein is a fast acting protein so it gets to work right away. It’s best to take this within 30 minutes of a workout but you can also take it throughout the day to help meet your protein needs.
Casein protein – This type of protein comes from milk and it’s different from whey because it’s a slow digesting protein so it’s good to take before bed.
Carbohydrates are for energy and if you’re on a bulk then you’re going to be eating plenty of carbs to get your calories up.
The good thing about carbs is that they taste pretty good too.
Here’s some of the essential healthy carbs you should be eating..
Oats – Oats are slow digesting so they’ll give you energy for hours to come and there’s lots you can do with them.
The easiest way to eat oats is as a cereal but you can also make protein bars out of them.
By mixing some oats, whey protein, peanut butter and honey together and then putting in the freezer for an hour you can make some cheap homemade but tasty oaty-protein bars.
Fruits – Who doesn’t love fruit? They’re full of vitamins and antioxidants plus they give you fast energy when you need it.
A banana is great after a workout because it digest really quickly so you’ll get that energy when you need it.
One way I love to get my fruit is in a blender. I recently bought myself a nutribullet and I mix a scoop of whey protein in with some frozen fruit and icey cold water and blend it up and it makes for a great post workout drink.
Veggies – We all know that vegetables are good for us. They’re a good source of carbohydrates and full of vitamins and antioxidants.
I eat spinach, kale and broccoli every day.
Brown rice – It’s a great slow digesting protein and it’s healthy.
Sweet potatoes – Sweet potatoes are a great way to get some healthy slow digesting carbs.
Whole wheat bread
If you’re going to eat bread then make sure it’s whole wheat. It’s high in carbs and it’s not unhealthy like a lot of other breads.
Avoid junk carbs – Common bro science will tell you that when you’re on a bulk it’s ok to eat whatever you want. Hey you’re on a bulk so why not eat that big bag of toffee popcorn to get your carbs right?
Wrong, junk carbs will make you feel like junk so try to fill your diet with healthy natural foods and not man made food invented in a factory.
This means avoiding boxed cereal, sweets, popcorn, ice-cream, coca cola and all that other crap.
Good sources of fats are great for the body. They help lubricate our joints, keep our skin from drying out and all kinds of other stuff to keep us healthy.
When you’re trying to build muscle and putting your body through intense workouts every day then good fats are a must.
When I’m on a bulk I try to get around 20% of my calories from fat.
The keyword here is good fats..
Olive oil – Pure extra virgin olive oil is extremely healthy and also high in calories so it’s great if your bulking.
Fish oil – you can supplement with some omega 3 capsules or even better eat some salmon for dinner and get some protein too!
Almonds – They’re a really healthy source of fat and I love a handful of dried almonds with my oats as they add a bit of crunch.
Most nuts contain good fats. One of my favorites is the Brazil but.
Peanut butter – This is a staple of part of a bodybuilders diet. A great source of fat and protein!
Avocados – When it comes to good fats it doesn’t get much better than the avocado. You can even get a bottle of avocado oil which tastes great.
Coconut oil – I love me some coconut oil. It tastes great and it’s really healthy too. It has all kinds of health benefits including being good for the skin and eyesight.
So that’s it. Cut out the junk food because that crap doesn’t do anything good for the body and will only end up making you look like the Michelin man on a bad day.
Instead fill your diet with the healthy foods above and not only will you start to feel better but you’ll end up looking better too!