A good muscle building diet plan combines four essential components:
Rather than give you an actual diet, I'm going to cover the components you need to put together your own muscle building meals.
The information can be used whether you're a man or woman.
First of all, you probably know that protein is a muscle building nutrient, but did you know that carbs, fat and water all help too? Yep, it’s true...
If you’ve been weight training for any length of time you probably know that protein is the building block of muscle.
In fact, it’s construction material for your entire body.
When you weight train you’re actually tearing down muscle tissue to be rebuilt bigger and stronger. Among its many functions, protein is used to build and repair those muscles you’re tearing down.
How much to have?
If you’re within normal body composition range, have a minimum of .8 grams of protein per pound of your bodyweight. 1 gram or more per pound is much better for fast muscle gains.
SIDE NOTE: Higher than recommended amounts of protein is not bad for you. But, if you have any kidney problems, check with your doctor before adopting a high protein diet.
Most recreational weight lifters don’t realize how important carbs are in a muscle building diet.
In the absence of carbs, your body turns to muscle tissue as a source of energy. Can you see how this is counterproductive if you’re trying to gain muscle mass?
Carbohydrates also provide fuel for your workouts and fuel for recovery from your workouts.
One of the reasons you should eat carbs and protein together with each meal is so the carbs can be used for energy and protein can go toward muscle tissue repair. This is important, especially if you want to build muscle fast.
Yep it’s true, fat does help you build muscle mass.
Fats play a role at both the cellular and hormonal levels in helping you build lean muscle.
It may not seem like it, but yes water is crucial in making lean muscle gains. Water helps facilitate ALL the processes involved in the recovery and growth of lean muscle.
Putting It All Together
The meals in your muscle building diet should all contain
a portion of a lean protein,
a whole grain or starchy carbohydrate,
a fibrous carbohydrate (vegetable, with 3 to 4 meals at least),