Whether your aim of hitting the gym is to build bulky muscles or simply tone up, you will not see results unless you watch what you eat. Diet is by far the single most crucial component to getting fit. It has been well said that no amount of time spent in the gym can ever compete with a faulty diet.
Building a hard, toned, fab and muscular body requires not only your blood and sweat but also a holistic approach towards food and eating healthy.
Six packs are not built in the gym but in the kitchen as popularly quoted by fitness enthusiasts. There are four crucial components to a muscle building diet. Let us study each of them in detail.
4 Muscle Building Diet Tips
1. Lean Protein
Muscles thrive and sustain on protein. When you weight train, you are essentially causing the muscle fibres to break down. Muscles also use glycogen as fuel and these need to be replenished immediately through good quality lean protein.
Protein helps the muscle to repair itself, grow stronger and prevent significant wear and tear that would otherwise occur had you been on a low protein diet. A good way to gauge the amount of protein your body requires is to go by the basic thumb rule.
The average protein recommendation for a person who weight trains is 1-1.5 grams of protein per pound of body weight. Take the protein in its leanest form. Good examples are tofu, cottage cheese, skinless chicken, fish, peanuts, almonds, eggs and whey. Low fat dairy is also an excellent protein choice.
2. Essential Fats
Weight training does not mean that you ban fats from your diet. Not all fats are harmful. The most dangerous are the Trans fats, which are found in pastries, cakes and biscuits. Instead, opt for essential fats found in MUFA (Monounsaturated fatty acids) and PUFA (Polyunsaturated fatty acids).These fats give your body vital calories and actually help to increase and raise the levels of good cholesterol without making you ‘fat’.
Some of the good options are olive oil, avocadoes, fatty fish like mackerel, walnuts, almonds and other nuts. Flaxseeds are also a good source of essential fatty acids and give you great skin and hair.
3. Complex Carbs
Not all carbs are bad. In fact, your body needs a sizeable portion of carbs immediately after a workout to replace lost glycogen reserves. Your muscles also use up a lot of fuel even when they are in a resting state, which means you, have to feed them with nourishing carbs. Go in for complex carbs, which are lower on the glycemic index like multi grains, oats, fruits and vegetables.
4. Meal Timings And Portion Control
When you are weight training, you need a continuous source of dietary sustenance. This can be achieved through regular meals. Make sure you eat six small meals every 2-3 hours. Eat smaller meals and control your portion size especially if you want to gain lean muscle mass.The above tips are critical for developing a toned, muscular and a fit body.