What To Eat For Lean Muscle Gain And Fat loss
Macronutrients and Their Importance
Macronutrients are an essential part of your diet. What are macronutrients? Macronutrients aren’t as complicated as they sound – they’re just nutrients that your body requires in large amounts. These nutrients provide energy or calories.
The three macronutrients include:
*Proteins – Proteins provide four calories per gram
*Carbohydrates – Carbs provide four calories per gram
*Fats – Fats provide approximately 9 calories per gram
The body needs all three of these macronutrients, as well as water and micronutrients (which we’ll talk about later) to function optimally.
Let’s take a closer look at each macronutrient and how you can figure out the right balance of each macronutrient to optimize your muscle gains.
The Role of Proteins in Muscle Building
Protein plays an important role in muscle building because the body uses proteins to construct all body tissues. Your body uses proteins to help repair muscles after a tough workout, which is why it’s so important to get enough protein. It’s also essential to make sure that you’re eating the right kind of proteins.
All proteins are made up of amino acids. Certain amino acids can be made by the body, while others cannot. Your body doesn’t need the amino acids it can make on its own. However, the amino acids that the body can’t make must be taken in through your diet. The body must have all the essential amino acids in order to repair or build tissue.
Proteins are broken into two categories:
*Incomplete Proteins – Incomplete proteins do not contain all of the essential amino acids and these proteins generally come from non-animal sources, such as nuts, veggies, and beans.
*Complete Proteins – Complete proteins contain all of the essential amino acids, and they generally come from animal sources.
A way to calculate your protein needs to make sure that approximately 30% of your calorie intake comes from protein.
*Whole Eggs – Whole eggs offer an excellent amount of protein and eating whole eggs makes sure that you get all the nutrition found in the egg yolks. One egg contains about 7 grams of protein and 70 calories, making it easy to add a lot of protein to your diet without adding a huge amount of calories. Here are a few ways to add whole eggs to your meals:
*Dice eggs into salads
*Make an omelette for breakfast
*Boil the eggs
*Make a meat, potatoes, and egg hash brown
*Make your own egg protein cupcakes with egg, cheese, and diced meat.
*Beef – Beef offers plenty of protein, iron, creatine, vitamin B12, zinc, and other essential nutrients that aid in muscle building and fat loss. Beef comes in many differ forms, including stakes and ground beef. Add it to your meals by:
*Making tacos with ground beef
*Stir fry with veggies
*Season and eat a nice steak
*Whey Protein Isolate -Enjoy whey protein isolate in your meals by:
*Making whey protein shakes
*Adding a scoop to your oatmeal
*Take it on the go with a shaker and add liquid for a quick protein meal on the go
*Chicken – Chicken is also a protein start, offering a low-fat way to consume protein. It also contains magnesium, iron, vitamin B12, and vitamin A. You’ll get 26+ grams of proteins in a 3oz chicken breast for only 142 calories. Great ways to use chicken in your meals include:
*Top a salad with cooked strips of chicken
*Make healthy chicken strips
*Spice up chicken with a salsa and sour cream sauce
*Grill chicken and glaze with a fruity glaze or BBQ sauce
*Salmon – Salmon is rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, making it a great choice for a muscle building diet. It also provides important vitamins, such as vitamin D, vitamin B3, and vitamin B12. Use salmon in your diet by:
*Making salmon tacos
*Glazing and baking the salmon
*Flaking salmon and cooking with pasta in a garlic sauce
*Add flaked salmon to a salad
Other great sources of protein include:
Carbs for Muscle Building
It’s important to eat enough carbs each day to make sure your body has plenty of calories to use for energy. This ensures that the protein you eat is left to support the growth and repair of muscles.
Carbohydrates come in two different groups:
*Complex Carbs – Complex carbs take longer to digest and they contain more nutrient, such as important fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Since these carbs are digested more slowly, the body enjoys a more stable release of energy
*Simple Carbs – Simple carbohydrates are carbs that are quickly digested. This often leaves you feeling hungry, which may make you start eating more than you should. Simple carbs also lead to spikes in blood sugar. It’s important to limit simple carbs, such as sports drinks, sodas, white breads, pastries, etc.
About 40% of your calories should come from carbs when you’re focusing on lean muscle building. Grains, beans, and vegetables offer a great source of complex carbs. Some of the best nutrient dense carbs to add to your diet include:
*Whole wheat bread, tortillas, and pastas
*Shredded wheat cereal
Fats for Muscle Building and Fat Loss
You also need fats to achieve your muscle building goals. Many people make the mistake of trying to avoid fasts when they’re working to build muscle. Even if your goal is fat loss and muscle gains, you still need to consume enough fat. Fats are essential to your body, and certain types of fat are essential for muscle growth, muscle recovery, joint health, brain function, and more.
Fats come in three main groups, including:
*Saturated Fats – Saturated fats are fats that generally come from animal sources, such as meat, eggs, and dairy products. Some people think that saturated fats should be avoided, but you don’t need to completely eliminate saturated fats. Consuming both saturated and unsaturated fats can help you maintain high testosterone levels, making it easier for you to gain muscle.
*Unsaturated Fats – Unsaturated fats generally come from vegetable sources and they are known as good fats because they help to raise your levels of good cholesterol. Some unsaturated fats even have the ability to reduce your risk of heart disease. Some excellent sources of unsaturated fats include nuts, fish, and vegetable oils, such as olive oil.
*Trans Fatty Acids – Trans fatty acids are a type of fat that you do want to avoid as much as possible. They have the ability to raise bad cholesterol while lowering good cholesterol levels.
How much fat should you have on a daily basis? Approximately 25-30% of your calorie intake should come from fats. However, since you’re focusing your efforts on muscle building and fat loss, you do need to focus on your fat intake on healthy fats that will improve muscle growth. Great foods and oils that offer you a great source of health fats include:
*Peanut butter (as long as it’s not high in sugar)
The Importance of Micro Nutrients
Although macronutrients are required in large quantities, you also need to take in small amounts of micronutrients to support your muscle building and fat loss efforts. What are micronutrients? Micronutrients are parts of food sources that don’t offer caloric energy, yet they still perform many different physiological duties and are essential to maintaining good health.
Important Vitamins and Minerals Your Body Needs
Do you know what vitamins and minerals your body needs? Here’s a list of essential vitamins and minerals that your body needs:
*B Complex Vitamins
oB5 (pantothenic acid)
oB8 (ergadenylic acid)
oB9 (folic acid)
Great Sources of Micronutrients
How do you make sure you get plenty of micronutrients in your diet? First, cut out the junk food, since most junk food does not contain high amounts of important micronutrients. Second, focus on eating a wide variety of healthy foods. Some great foods