There are a large amount bodybuilders, muscle builders and fitness fanatics that are well and truly clued up on how to train correctly. With split-programmes, tempo training, super sets, drop sets and other training principles applied to their gym work. However we have found that nutrition knowledge more often than not is not up to the same standard, many packing in the calories with chicken, dairy, pasta and red meat. Having a post workout tuna and sweetcorn has to be good for you?

Sadly not all is what it seems in the world of nutrition and fitness, many manufacturers have done a brilliant job ruining the nutritional value otherwise healthy foods. We have made a list of muscle building foods that have positives and negatives.

Salad

Salads can go one of two ways when it comes to being a healthy and muscle building, they can either be great or instead of increasing your biceps they just increase your waist. Good salads will be packed full of salmon, chicken and raw beans, unlike most other muscle building foods the wide array of high quality abundance and variety of soluble and insoluble fibre that can be in salad is what makes it great.


However some salads can really kill your dreams by being filled with hard cheeses, bacon and croutons, but to put the icing on the cake they can be drizzled in creamy dressings which add a mountain of unwanted and unnecessary calories. The calories in the dressing can be more than all the calories in the salad itself.
Some salad dressings are great and are based upon rapeseed, grapeseed and virgin olive oil all which are packed with healthy unsaturated fats which can help benefit fat loss and promotes healthy cholesterol. There is also an anti-inflammatory value to olive oil as it contains oleocanthal, which is great for those with joint and muscular aches and pains. Skip the supermarket offerings and make your own dressings, just the simple combination of olive oil and balsamic can create a nice tang to any salad.

More often than not salad dressing is not great and if you think picking a low fat option is the way to go then you will be sadly disappointed as these are packed with extra sugar. Obviously stay away from the creamy calorific dressings if you want that 6-pack instead of the 1-pack.

myInnerGo consultant Christopher Collins who has Certification on Sport Nutrition recommends:

Go for a good combination salad, have different greens in there not just ice berg lettuce, throw in cherry tomatoes, red onion, chopped olives and peppers. And for the protein why not lightly grill some salmon or a tuna steak and add that to the top of your salad, drizzle with a little virgin olive oil and balsamic and you’re done!

Yogurt

Yogurt has and always will be a bodybuilding staple, it is packed with protein, zinc, calcium and bacteria that helps the gut absorb it all. However whilst yogurt is great most manufacturers ruin this simple food by adding a myriad of rubbish. Added fructose and processed fruit kill any muscle building powers of yogurt and instead make it into a waist builder. We have some yogurts where 84% of their total calorie load is in added ingredients, it is hardly worth calling it a yogurt after that. Most of these sugary packed yogurts are detrimental to health and cause insulin release which will lead to extra fat to store.  

Chris from myInnerGo recommends:

Stick with low fat plain yogurt and Greek yogurt, if you need extra sugar then add in your own fruits, we recommend:

  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Strawberries
  • Kiwi

Also we have RECIPE section where you can see different ways, how to use plain or Greek yogurt.

    Cold Meats

    Now we don’t mean processed meats, but we mean good quality cold meats, these can help your sandwich pack a giant protein punch. These meats contain good sources of zinc, magnesium, iron and B vitamins, these will all help you pack on muscle without the need for supplementing.

    However these cold meats are not all what they are cracked up to be, some packaged meats contain nitrate preservatives which can cause damaging oxidation to occur within the body and has a link to prostate cancer, they can also be high in salt which has been shown in high level to be damaging to the liver and kidneys.

    Steak

    A nice beef steak is a treat for many and is a powerhouse for muscle builders, steak is packed full of protein, zinc, B vitamins and iron. It also has some saturated fat which has some benefits in maintaining testosterone levels (just don’t get too much). How can we ruin steak for you? Well in general we are not we are just pointing out that some cuts are so full of fat (rib eye & prime rib) that they may as well not have meat, think of your waist and pick a different cut.

    Chris from myInnerGo recommends:

    Get yourself eating meat slices that are naturally high in protein compared with fat such as chicken and turkey slices, we also recommend going organic or to a butcher who sells these deli style dishes.

    We say go for some steak now and again, but why not go for a sirloin or fillet cut over rib eye and prime rib. A sirloin steak can have 50g less fat than prime rib and pack more muscle building punch, when cooking steaks don’t cut the fat off until after its cooked! Grass fed is always the way to go when picking steaks.

    Tuna

    Tuna is packed out with protein and omega-3, it is one the most widely used protein foods around, and its nutritional make up is simply one of the best around.

    Be careful of tuna that is drenched in oils and sauces, these will add 100-200kcal extra to your light protein filled dish. Another problem is that mercury could be present in some of your tuna tins, mercury acts as a neurotoxin and is very detrimental to health.

    Chris from myInnerGo recommends:

    Check if companies test for mercury in their product before you buy it and start wolfing it down, try and get all that oil out before sticking that tuna in your salads and pasta.

    All this looks interesting to you? Head over myInnerGo website to get more information. myInnerGo WEIGHT helps you find what works best for you.


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