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Top 8 Foods to Build Lean Muscle

By Jayshreebhagat

If you are looking to build lean muscle, consuming a balanced diet is your best bet. Here are the top foods to go for.

Top 8 Foods to Build Lean Muscle

If you want to build lean muscle in your body, it is important to follow a lifestyle of good nutrition and exercise. It is important to challenge the body through involvement in physical activity, but you cannot achieve your fitness goals without nutritional support.

Proteins are generally important for body building, even though carbohydrates and fat have a part to play in the structure of your body. The diet should have healthy foods as the basis and be high in calories.

Basics of muscle growth

Muscle growth occurs due to three macronutrients – fat, carbohydrates and protein, while calorie intake is the other factor driving growth. Carbohydrates and fats supply energy for exercise and control functioning of the hormones respectively, while protein promotes growth and repair of muscle. Here are the best options you can take.

Grass-fed beef

Staying away from factory-fed livestock is not an option, and meat from these sources is not healthy anyway. Grass-fed cows and livestock actually have benefits for muscle growth due to their protein, zinc, iron and B vitamins. In addition, they also contain CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) in higher amounts than conventionally-raised cattle, and this enhances your body’s ability to build lean muscle and shed fat.

In addition, one serving of beef (usually 3oz.) provides you with 23 grams of protein, and the iron component is about 15% of the daily intake that nutritionists recommend. Iron has an important role in facilitating the transport of oxygen in the body, including your muscles – low levels of it lead to fatigue, weakness of the body, reduced immunity, among other conditions.

Eggs

Top 8 Foods to Build Lean Muscle

The whole egg is good for building muscle, even the yolk. Eggs are actually considered to be perfect proteins, and you do not need to fear about the bad cholesterol myth either – the egg yolk actually contains HDL cholesterol (the good type), which proves to reduce the levels of LDL cholesterol (the bad type) in the body.

Eggs also come with high levels of important amino acids that aid growth of muscle and the good news is they are versatile enough to be eaten with almost anything.

Oats

If you are keen on building up your body muscle, carbohydrates need to be an important part of your diet because they give your body the energy it needs for training in the first place.

Oats are good for you, as they are a ‘slow’ carbohydrate. That means you can consume a large amount and not have the insulin levels get out of control in your body. It makes them a good option for regulating blood sugar, protects you from gaining unnecessary fat, and controls your appetite in a healthy way.

Brown rice

Top 8 Foods to Build Lean Muscle

The body actually digests whole grains more efficiently than refined grains, resulting in greater levels of sustainable energy for the body. When it comes to whole grains, brown rice is an excellent option, because it also supplies high amounts of protein.

One cup of brown rice gives the body about five grams of lean protein, which makes brown rice comparable to quinoa, another protein-rich plant source.

In addition, brown rice enhances the levels of growth hormones that assist the body to achieve muscle strength, gain and burning of fat.

READ: Top 5 Amazing Benefits of Creatine Monohydrate | Muscle Building & Fitness

Beetroot

We know beetroot can be an acquired taste, so they are not very popular. However, once you get past the stage of disliking them, you will discover they carry very many benefits for your health. Not only do they contain an abundance of minerals and vitamins, but also muscle-building properties.

Beets contain trimethylglycine (betaine), which is a substance that is powerful enough to stimulate joints and liver repair, while also enhancing the growth of muscles. They also have qualities that boost the immune system and are great for detoxing, making them an excellent option for building the strength of the muscles.

Quinoa

Top 8 Foods to Build Lean Muscle

This wonder plant has increased in popularity in recent years. It is a grain crop that is cultivated for its seeds, which are considered a very good source of nutrients and protein.

It happens to act in a similar way to brown rice and oats – it is a slow carbohydrate as well as being a complete protein, similar to eggs. In fact, regular intake of quinoa seeds has links to increasing production of IGF-1, an insulin-like growth factor.

IGF-1 promotes greater strength as well as more lean muscle tissue, in addition to burning fat and calories. You can consume them in any meal, and add them to smoothies and protein shakes.

Apples

Top 8 Foods to Build Lean Muscle

Just as you may hear about NJ drug rehab centers for recovering addicts, you have probably heard the saying ‘An apple a day keeps the doctor away’. It is actually true – apples are a very good source of insoluble and soluble fibers, in addition to Vitamin C.

Apples provide your body with immune system boosts, they give energy and regulate your blood sugar levels because of polyphenols – phytonutrients that stop any dangerous increases in blood sugar. They also have another function; increasing muscle strength and energy, which leads to increase in lean muscle.

Just remember that most of these nutrients are within the apple skin, so ensure you consume the whole unpeeled apple.

Greek yogurt

Greek yogurt is a very good source of calcium and protein, both essential when you want to build and maintain your body strength and physique. It also comes with B Vitamins, particularly B12, which promotes the functioning of muscles in general.

It contains less amounts of lactose compared to other dairy products so it can be a good option for people who are lactose-intolerant.

In addition, this food gives you various essential amino acids that are very important for muscle development and growth, while its low fat content also assists in developing lean muscle. The best choice you can make when it comes to choosing it is going for the organic Greek yogurt that has no fat, sodium or added sugars.

Final thoughts

Healthy options exist when you are trying to build lean muscle. These are not the only foods that will assist you in the task though – there are many varieties of foods that will help you out. However, it is important to also consider taking a balanced diet and physical activity that will help your endurance and maintain lean muscle structure.


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