20 Foods To Help Build Muscle Mass, Lose Weight And Get Healthy
Everyone knows that diet and exercise are the keys to living a physically healthy life, but those two small words are far easier said than done. Knowing exactly what you need to put into your body to look the way you want isn’t a cut and dry business, but there are some dietary guidelines you can follow if you want to shed those unwanted pounds while helping to sculpt the lean physique that anyone looking to be fit wants to have.
If you don’t keep your body hydrated, it retains water and therefore gives you added weight – its as simple as that. If you drink enough water, it will stave off retention as well as help muscle recovery during strength training. Its best to drink 2-3 liters a day – but if you’re new to regular water drinking, try drinking 2 cups with every meal.
Lots of people think the cholesterol in an egg yolk can be dangerous, but isn’t as impactful as one might think. Eating the entire egg – white and yolk – is both one of the richest and cheapest sources of protein you can find.
Aside from being delicious both cooked and raw, they are both high in fiber and very low in calories. They are also full of vitamin A which means they are great for your night vision and general eye health.
Looking for the most wholesome source of omega-3 fatty acids and and lean protein? Look no further than the delicious salmon, which has 20g of protein per 100g of fish. To reap these benefits, buy wild salmon – farmed salmon are fed corn and grain so they are omega-3 deficient.
Delightfully tart and sweet, oranges are loaded with vitamin C, which means they are loaded with anti-oxidant beta-carotenes and help fight disease and high blood pressure. If you only like the juice, make sure it is the real stuff otherwise you’ll miss all of the benefits.
Gastrointestinal health is very important when trying to get your health on track, and eating yogurt, which is full of probiotics, is the perfect thing to get you there. For the best results, buy plain yogurt – not frozen and not with sugar added. If you don’t like the flavor, add fruit for sweetness.
Eating oats in a smoothie or as oatmeal can help reduce cholesterol and is high in fiber. They also have a low glycemic index which helps keep blood sugar in check and in turn helps control weight.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Extra virgin olive oil is filled with incredibly healthy monounsaturated fats that help guard against cancer and heart disease as well as polyphenols that help lower oxidative stress. Best used as a salad dressing or in stove-top cooking, make sure you get cold-pressed extra virgin for the best results.
Eating protein is very important for people who want to gain muscle and turkey, especially the white meat, is one of the best sources for it. It has close to 0g of saturated fat, which is why it can get really dry, do try eating it with some of the other good grains and veggies on this list.
Beef – its what’s for dinner. Packed full of not only protein but vitamin B12, carnosine, creatine, zinc, heme iron, and even omega-3, treat yourself to grass-fed top round and/or sirloin.
Like most cruciferous vegetables, broccoli has a low calorie count and is high in fiber – two things essential to weight loss. It also happens to be high in cancer-fighting phytochemicals and anti-estrogenic indoles.
This dark leafy green is versatile on so many levels. Not only does it help prevent cancer, heart disease, bone loss, and muscle loss but it also has an incredible nutrient profile and can be prepared in a number of ways in countless dishes.
Nuts of all kinds – walnuts, pecans, cashews, almonds, hazelnuts, you name it – are a wonder food for muscle gain. They are rich in everything from mono and polyunsaturated fats, fiber, protein, vitamin E, magnesium, zinc, and potassium. But they are dense in calories, so if you are looking to lose weight too, watch your portions.
While most people think of quinoa as one of those holier-than-thou diet foods, it actually is pretty much everything that it is cracked up to be. The South American king of grains is better at fiber and protein than oats and rice and it also happens to be gluten free. It also goes quite well with beef and spinach.
While you can’t really eat flax seed straight, they are a great additive to cereals, smoothies, and health drinks when ground into a powder (skip the oil). It is an excellent source of omega-3 oil and fiber.
Although lycopene is found in a lot of red fruits and vegetables, tomatoes are the greatest source of the rich antioxidant that helps prevent exercise induced asthma as well as cancer. If you don’t like tomatoes alone, use tomato paste on your next pizza or in your next pasta dish.
If you are looking for a good source of low calorie anti-oxidants to add to your diet, berries – strawberries, blueberries, cranberries, raspberries, blackberries – are the way to go. Not only do they taste great both fresh and frozen, they go great with everything.
Lots of people swear on starting their day with coffee, but you should try starting with an apple. Not only do they contain some of the most powerful antioxidants but they also help satisfy hunger and therefore greatly aid weight loss. Since most apples are riddled with pesticides, splurge for the organic ones.
To get the benefits of fish oil – reduced inflammation of skin and joints, lower cholesterol, and increased testosterone – you need to consume 9000mg EPA/DHA. Since no one wants to eat fish 24/7, fish oil is a great supplement to add to your diet. Just make sure you take it with a meal so you can avoid the “fishy burps.”
Green tea is awful to people who don’t have a taste for it, but its one of the best things you can be putting into your body. It is a natural diuretic, a strong antioxidant, prevents cancer, improves blood sugar, increases circulation, and speeds up fat loss. Make sure you’re drinking the real thing and not the tea bags.