What you eat matters, especially when it comes to gaining muscle

Updated on:23 March 2020, 19:43pm IST
Just attending gym regularly won’t reap you any benefit if you don’t eat right.
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Keep a check on your calorie count if you want to gain those muscles. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

If you sweat like a pig in the gym and then end up eating without keeping a tab of your calories then all your hard work goes in vain. At times, it’s really disheartening to see no muscle gain happening even after lifting all the possible weight in your gym.

One thing is for sure that building muscle is no child’s play and it needs dedication and will power to build those muscles and maintain them for a longer run. 

Do you know, diet plays a really important role in muscle building? Proteins and carbs are two essential nutrients that are must if you are planning to build muscles – and yes, we mean natural proteins. A study published in journal Nutrient also backs up when we say that. 

In fact, another study published in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition states that it is very important to maintain those calories count for the professional bodybuilders if they want to do good in the competitions and carbs are the way to do it.  

Also, read: These 5 female bodybuilders are proof that glorious muscles aren’t just for men

Nowadays, you have seen multiple women who are taking up bodybuilding as a profession like Kiran Dembla, Yashmeen Chauhan, etc. and they have also raved about the importance of taking a proper diet.  

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Carbohydrates are essential for muscle building
When it comes to muscle building then carbohydrates have a major role to play. Reason being, carbs are the ultimate source of energy and for weight training, you need the energy to lift those heavy-duty plates and dumb-bells.

A study published in the journal Nutrition suggests that carbohydrates are of paramount importance when it comes to muscle building and physical performance. 

And adding carbs in your diet doesn’t mean loading on junk food like pasta, burgers, etc. By carbs, we mean good carbs which include the food low in fat. 

Here are some examples of good carbs: Cereals, multigrain breads, potatoes, whole eggs, rice, sweet potatoes, etc. Fruit, vegetables, skimmed milk, and yogurt are also some of the good options of carbs that you can add to your diet. 

When you consume carbs it gets converted into glycogens which give you power during workouts. So, for complete health and muscle strength, focus on good sources of carbohydrates.

injuries during workout
To build muscle strength it is important to eat right. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Let carbs be your source of energy and not protein
Basically, if you don’t take enough carbs then your body starts breaking the protein and starts converting it into energy – which FYI, is not a good sign. For your body to allow muscles to grow, you need to have enough calories than you burn per day. Adequate intake of calories, carbohydrates, and protein is required so that your body will not convert the protein into energy.

If you have reached stagnation in muscle building and nothing is happening even after you are lifting more than what you used to then your diet has to be blamed for it. At times, you ignore it but once you start taking a proper diet you will see the difference. 

A study published in journal Sports suggests that if you want to take bodybuilding professionally then it is very important that you take a recommended amount of calories to enhance your performance. 

There’s another reason why there is a need to take surplus calories and that is if you don’t take proper diet then you end up getting muscle injuries. A lot of wear and tear can be expected if you don’t take your meals seriously.  

muscle cramps
Does accidental muscle cramps often hinder your workout? Then blame it on your diet. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

The bottom line is that you take a proper count of your calories according to the requirement – like if you want to gain muscle for some professional fiesta then, of course, your daily intake of carbs and other nutrients will vary than normal. 

Also, the key is striking the right balance and once you do that you are all sorted. So, just remember the moderation mantra to gain and maintain muscle mass without worrying much about it.  

With inputs from IANS

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