Dietary Tips for Building Lean Muscle

Building lean muscle doesn't just depend on the gym workouts. In fact, if you spend 8 hours in the gym during the week, there's a lot of opportunity to put a few of the rest of the work week's 160 hours to work in your favor. Some of those hours are spent asleep rejuvenating your muscles and mind. However, the 3-6 hours a day you spend fueling up are key to successfully building lean muscle.

Outside of your gym and training time you have about 95% of the week for recuperation. You success keeping lean and building new muscle are partially determined by how smart you eat. Understanding how macro-nutrients and micro-nutrients work together for optimum muscular growth is knowledge worth having. Macro-nutrients are proteins, carbohydrates, fats and water. Micro-nutrients are the smaller trace elements, vitamins and minerals.


Carbohydrates constitute the main resource pool of energy for all your body functions. They are key to brain functions and are required so that other nutrients can be metabolized. The major food source of carbohydrates are grains, vegetables, fruits and legumes (peas and beans).

Yes, proteins and fat are a source of energy for you during body building. Carbs are the most easily accessed fuel source. The fall into two categories: simple sugars and complex carbohydrates.

Nutrition is all about balance. Adults store ingested carbohydrates in the form of muscle glycogen. Carbohydrates are best consumed between 4-6 hours after waking up. As the day progresses, the ability to store carbohydrates decreases. The general recommendation for building lean muscle is to take in your carbohydrates early in the day and consume more protein in the later part of the day.


Fats provide more energy than carbohydrate or protein. Beside providing fuel to your body, fat insulates your vital organs, provide essential fatty acids and the building blocks for cellular restructure. Essential fatty acids are essential in your diet for the proper growth, maintenance and functions of your endocrine systems.


Protein is a naturally occurring, complex, organic nitrogenous compound composed of amino acids that contain carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, sulfur, phosphorus, iron, iodine and a few other components of living cells.

All these help keep your hormones functioning, synthesize energy during periods of intense stress, injury or caloric deficit, help your immune system work, repair tissues and synthesize new tissues.

Once you eat a chunk of steak, a protein mass, your stomach and digestive track break it down into peptides and amino acids. Much of this is absorbed by organs involved in the metabolic process.

When you are building lean muscle, there are benefits to eating a steady supply of amino acids throughout the day. Break down your protein needs into two categories: growth and maintenance. Then spread out your protein consumption into six meals a day instead of three.

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