What to Eat to Build Muscles?
By Nigel White
When I ask boys what they think they need to eat to be strong and build muscle, they will often answer “eat more meat.”
It turns out they are partially right, but not entirely. A recent study published by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition concluded that people who had the highest amount of protein in their diets had the highest muscle mass. Here is where it gets interesting. This same study noted that the source of protein, either from plant or animal sources, did not impact the development of muscle.
This is good news for athletes who are concerned about their own long term health and the health of the planet.
Eating less red and processed meat is well established to be associated with lower rates of mortality due to heart disease, certain cancers and type II diabetes. See this link to the Harvard School of Public Health to read more.
Furthermore, a 2011 Environmental Working Group analysis points out that meat production impacts the environment through large-scale use of water as well as pesticides, chemicals, and fuel while generating greenhouse gas emissions many times greater than plant-based protein. Click here to read more.
What are some great sources of these plant proteins that will help build muscle?
Try snacking on edamame, dried chickpeas, oats, nuts, seeds, and for meals eat chili or tacos containing beans and lentils, and whole grains like quinoa and brown rice. Hemp seeds can easily be added to any meal to increase the protein while also providing other important nutrients and fibre.
Check out the nutrition committee webpage for a full description of UCC’s dining offerings, health tips, and new monthly recipes.
For a complete collection of pro wellness tips “From Behind the Bench,” written by Nigel White for UCC’s Go Blues website visit here.