Build Up Your Muscles With Protein
Protein is probably the most well publicized muscle building food out there and for good reason. It provides your body with the fuel it needs to build, maintain and repair your muscle cells between weightlifting workouts and allows you to enjoy consistent muscle gains. This article will provide you with a detailed overview of the significance of protein when it comes to developing your muscles, highlight some of the richest protein food sources and discuss how much protein you need to eat for maximum muscle growth.
How Protein Builds Up Your Muscles
Protein supports muscle growth both directly and indirectly. The list below explains how this powerful nutrient builds up your muscles:
- It Builds, Maintains & Repairs Your Muscle Cells: The main way protein helps to maximize muscle growth is by acting as a building block and allowing your muscle cells to grow back bigger and stronger after each workout.
- It Supports Smooth Muscle Contractions: Another way that protein indirectly builds up your muscles is by helping your muscles contract smoothly. This allows you to complete weightlifting motion in a more efficient manner and get the maximum benefit from your weightlifting workouts.
Protein Rich Foods
Many foods contain high levels of protein and the list below outlines some of the top protein rich food groups:
- Fish: Fish is a tasty and versatile protein source that contains between 25g and 35g of protein in an average 4 oz. serving. It also contains high levels of energy boosting B vitamins that help you perform at your peak during muscle building workouts.
- Meat: Meat contains an average of 25g-35g of protein per 4 oz. serving and is also loaded with large amounts of B vitamins.
- Nuts: Nuts are a top snacking option that pack around 5g of protein in a 1 oz. serving. In addition to this, they contain large amounts of B vitamins and healthy fats which support your muscles during the recovery process.
- Seeds: Seeds are an excellent alternative to nuts that also contain around 5g of protein in a 1 oz. serving.
How Much Protein Is Required For Maximum Muscle Growth?
There’s a lot of debate surrounding the ideal amount of protein for maximum muscle growth. The reason for this is that it depends on the person and there is no set amount of protein that will stimulate muscle growthin all people. The good news is that finding the perfect amount of protein for you is relatively simple and you can easily work it out by following the steps below:
- Calculate Your BMR: Your BMR (or Basal Metabolic Rate) is a measurement that roughly shows the number of calories you need to be eating to stay alive. You can estimate your BMR using this calculator.
- Calculate Your Protein Calories: After you’ve worked out your BMR, the next stage is to calculate how much protein is right for you. Protein packs 4 calories per gram and studies have shown that getting between 40% and 60% of your daily calories from protein will maximize your muscle growth. So if you have a BMR of 2000 calories, try to eat between 800 and 1200 protein calories each day (or between 200g and 300g of protein).
- Monitor & Adjust Your Protein Calories: Following steps 1 and 2 is a great starting point for working out your optimal protein intake. However, for the best results, you may need to experiment and increase or decrease the amount of protein you’re consuming. If you find after two weeks that your muscles are growing in line with your expectations but your body fat levels are also increasing, try cutting your daily calories by 200 (which will reduce your daily protein by 80-120 calories or 20-30g). Alternatively, if you find that your muscles aren’t developing as fast as you’d like, try eating 200 more calories each day. Then continue adapting your caloric intake every two weeks until you’re consuming just the right amount of protein.
By basing each of your meals around protein and supplementing your diet with protein powder, you can give your muscles exactly what they need to recover and grow. So make sure you’re filling up on these protein rich foods daily and start enjoying muscle building success today.
Best Protein For Muscle Building