Protein is a nutrient that plays a role in building and repairing tissue as well as providing fuel for the body. Protein is especially dense in muscle and is the most found component of the body aside from water. The best sources of complete protein are meat, eggs, soy, milk, and fish. The protein requirements for people differ based on several factors, including physical activity level, growth rate, body weight, body composition, and energy intake. However, the widely accepted guideline for protein intake is 0.8 grams of protein for every kilogram of weight. This is for a normal, sedentary human being.
Athletes such as bodybuilders require more protein, however, from anywhere between 1.6 to 1.8 grams per kilogram. Contrary to popular belief, consuming protein in excess will not necessarily promote high muscle growth. When consumed excessively, protein can cause kidney disease, heart disease, constipation, and osteoporosis. However, increased intake is necessary for those engaged in high-intensity workout programs like bodybuilding. If you are interested in learning more about building muscles, go to bodyweightworkouts.org to learn more.
So what foods are protein-rich that can cater to the high-protein needs of bodybuilding?
1. Whey Protein
A scoop of whey protein powder contains around 28 grams of protein. After curdling and straining the milk, whey is the liquid left behind. Whey protein can be found in powdered forms – some famous brands include ProSource NytroWhey, GNC Wheybolic Extreme, and BPI Sports ISO-HD. There are many, many brands of whey protein powder, as it has become a standard for athletes everywhere attempting to bulk up.
2. Greek Yogurt
Greek yogurt is yogurt with the whey strained out. One cup of Greek yogurt contains at least 17 grams of protein, with many brands containing more than that. Greek yogurt is not only delicious but extremely great for stocking up on the protein needed to body-build. The best brands of Greek yogurt are Fage, Chobani, and Oikos. Though many body-builders may be trying to avoid the sugars that come with flavored Greek yogurts, it’s a great option for those who want to switch up the flavor of their daily protein, which can often get monotonous and boring.
A large, single egg, with yolk and white, contains 6 grams of protein, making it a standard in the diet of bodybuilders. Eggs can be prepared a variety of ways, including omelets, boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, fried eggs, poached eggs, and even more. They don’t take much time or effort to prepare and can be a great staple for intensive working out. You can also just buy liquid egg whites to save time, which still contains a good chunk of protein.
4. Top Round Steak
Lean cuts of meat provide more protein than fatty cuts of meat. The top round steak, for example, has around 65 grams of protein for one whole steak. Luckily, this is a cut of steak that won’t break the bank, but care should be taken while cooking not to overcook the steak. Overcooked lean cuts are often quite dry, so quick preparation on high heat is the best way to go for cooking.
5. Skinless Chicken Breast
Chicken breasts are one of the most versatile meats around, with the options for recipes spanning many different types of ethnic food. This means that by stocking up on chicken breasts or cutlets, you’ll get plenty of variety in your diet just by trying out different recipes, and you’ll benefit from the 43 grams of protein, on average, contained in one chicken breast. Much like lean cuts of steak, chicken is easily overcooked, so take care when cooking to avoid producing dry, stringy chicken.
Called the chicken of the sea, tuna is an excellent source of protein, ranging from 19 to 25 grams of protein for one 3-ounce cooked fish, depending on the variety of tuna. With preparation ranging from grilled to sushi, tuna is a delicious fish for anyone in need of a lot of protein. There are also plenty of canned options for tuna to be used in sandwiches and more. Some brands of canned tuna include Bumble Bee, Chicken of the Sea, and Safe Catch.
These are just a few options for protein intake when bodybuilding, but there are much more, including many kinds of dairy products, meat, and even a ton of nutritional supplements that are sure to meet the needs of any high-intensity athlete. There are also tons of resources on food preparation and recipes that will make building your high-protein diet a breeze – and also delicious!