The powerful animals like elephant, rhinocerous, hippopotamus, bull, etc., are herbivores only. This is a classical example that all the required protein and energy for the body are available in plenty in vegetarian foods.
Undoubtedly, there is no threat of protein deficiency for vegetarian bodybuilders. Even a diet containing oatmeal, potatoes and wheat would solve your protein requirement.
8 Food For vegetarian bodybuilders:
Legumes often called as ‘poor man’s meat’ has abundance of soluble fiber. Soluble fiber is essential for maintaining the energy level and blood sugar level of body builders. They are high in protein and release complex carbohydrates slowly and steadily.
Legumes can even be taken in the form of stews and soups. Some of the common legumes are kidney beans, black eyed peas, black beans and lentils.
2. Allium Vegetables:
Allium vegetables provide more energy when they are uncooked. It can be used in salads, sandwiches and all other raw recipes. Allium vegetables include onion, garlic, leeks and chives. In addition to providing healthy nutrients they also add flavor to your diet. Their nutritious values come from sulphur containing compounds and flavonoids like quercetin.
3. Whole Grains:
Whole grains play a major role in supplying constant energy for the rigorous training of bodybuilders. Whole grains have high content of vitamins, fiber, essential fatty acids and minerals. Some of the foods containing whole grain are barley, oatmeal, whole wheat flour, brown rice and cereals.
Many products labels available in market are misleading. Look for the products with labels mentioned as ‘100% whole wheat.
Salmon contains omega 3 fatty acids in abundance. It is a good choice for adding protein for building your body muscle. Similar to protein, omega 3 fatty acids is needed for body builders to recover from hard workouts. It is an important building block for cell membranes.
Even though nuts are regarded as fatty foods, eating them in limited quantities provides lot of nutrients to the body. Nuts are loaded with lot of nutrients, vitamin E, vegetable proteins, fiber, magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper, phosphorous, selenium and antioxidants.
Some of the good choices of nuts for bodybuilders are almonds, walnuts, peanuts, cashews, pecans, hazelnuts and pine nuts. Restrict yourself from not eating too much of these nuts. It will add your calories and body fat. You can have one serving of nuts a day, where 1 serving equals 24 nuts.
6. Cruciferous Vegetables:
Cruciferous vegetables are rich in fiber and vitamin C. They are low in calories and contains abundant of phytonutrients. Cruciferous vegetables are a smart choice for taking essential micronutrients with less of calories. Cruciferous vegetables include like cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and brussel sprouts. These vegetables are very much useful for bodybuilders to reduce unnecessary body fat. Four to five servings of cruciferous vegetables can be consumed per week.
It is a rare property that a natural food being more beneficial after cooking and processing. Tomato has that specialty. But tomato loses vitamin C to some extent when cooked. It contains lot of antioxidants and it is fully absorbed by the body when heated. The antioxidant lycopene is a pigment that is responsible for the red color of tomatoes and watermelon. Lycopene is absorbed well in the body if taken in the form of tomato sauce, tomato juice, ketchup, tomato paste and canned tomatoes.
Mollusks are good source of minerals and proteins. The nutritious and tasty choices of mollusks are oysters, clams and mussels. They are excellent sources of zinc, copper, selenium and vitamin B12. They help in passing oxygen to all muscles. They are vital for the proper working of immune system.