There are special diet plans for muscle building. To build muscle the daily calorific input should be between 3000-5000 calories. The thumb rule is that gain of muscle mass should be 80 per cent through diet and 20 per cent through exercise. The diet also should be healthy but should be less on fat. The diet plan to build muscle involves eating many times during the day in accordance with the calorific requirement and the exercise pattern.
The ideal diet should include carbohydrates which add bulk to the body. Carbohydrates are contained in oatmeal, brown rice, pasta and potatoes. These foods should be included in every meal. Proteins should be included in every meal too. Non vegetarians have a variety of choices for protein. Animal sources include eggs, lean meat and chicken. Vegetarians have a smaller choice of concentrated protein. Tofu, beans, pulses and lentil and brown rice are good choices. The diet should also include plenty of minerals and vitamins for which one or two helpings of fresh fruits and vegetables should be included in each meal.
2-3 litres of full cream milk should be drunk every day to build muscle mass. Nuts are a wholesome addition to every meal. A person seeking to build muscle should take 3 large meals plus 3 snacks every day.
Experts recommend that the following food groups be included in every meal:
Protein – found in eggs, chicken, pork, steak, burgers, tofu, almonds, walnuts, peanut butter, beans
Carbohydrates – found in sweet and normal Potatoes, whole wheat pasta, whole wheat bread, rice
Vegetables and Fruits – Any kind will do as long as it is fresh and organically grown - Bananas, oranges, apples, strawberries, green beans, lentils, broccoli, cauliflower
Dairy – Whole milk, plain yogurt
It is advisable to start with exercise and then add up calorific intake. Each day an increase of 300-500 calories enables the body adapt to additional intake and convert fat deposits into muscle. One important thing to remember is to keep the body hydrated with 8-10 glasses of water every day. Another is never to skip breakfast. In fact, about half of the calorific requirement should be taken in the first half of the day at breakfast and at a midmorning snack. Experts also recommend drinking a smoothie or fruit milkshake after every workout.
Tips to eating healthy:
- Vegetables should be lightly steamed
- Meat should not be overcooked to preserve nutrient content.
- Carbonated drinks, junk food , sweets give a temporary spurt of energy but work against building muscle mass and should be avoided
- Fish should be steamed or poached to preserve nutrition
- Food should be stocked in advance to encourage eating
- Bananas and avocado are good sources of potassium and good fats and should be eaten every day to prevent cramps and aches which follow strenuous exercise