‘You are what you eat’ is not merely an old wives’ tale to scare susceptible children into believing that they would turn into junk food if they ate too much of it!
What you eat directly translates into how healthy your body is. For example, our bodies are made up of 70% water. We lose a great deal of water each and every single day through perspiration, urination and drinking diuretics such as tea and coffee. This means that we need to replace the water that we lose by drinking six to eight glasses of water a day. However, if we don’t drink enough water, our bodies won’t function optimally as we don’t have sufficient amounts of water to facilitate our body’s processes.
The same principle can be applied to post-workout nutrition.
What Happens When We Exercise?
When we exercise – be this cardiovascular or strength/resistance training – our muscles tear microscopically. This is a totally normal process and they rebuild stronger owing to the resistance that you’ve placed on them.
Now, 80% of muscles consists of protein, so when these are torn during exercise, they need protein in order to rebuild themselves. What is happening furiously behind the scenes is that your body breaks down the protein that you’ve consumed into amino acids. These acids are absorbed and are used to rebuild muscles.
It thus stands to reason that the more protein the body has access to, in order to break down into amino acids, the bigger the muscles will become.
The Best Type Of Protein
So, if you want to become serious about building muscle, you need to choose the protein that you consume after your workouts carefully.
Remember that all of the protein out there is not created equal and fatty types of protein – such as steak with thick rinds of fat on them – will not help you in your quest to bulk up. If you eat the fat, this will first feed into your arteries and slowly start to clog these up.
If more and more of this type of fat is consumed, what will happen is that it will get harder and harder for blood to circulate throughout your body as it won’t be able to flow easily through your arteries. This will put you at risk for cardiovascular diseases.
So, the best type of protein to eat is lean protein. Examples are:
- Tinned tuna in brine,
- Hard-boiled eggs,
- Steamed chicken breasts
- Protein powder in a shake
If you subscribe to a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle, there are a great many plant-based proteins that you can try, such as legumes or pea protein. You can even snack on these while playing at the top online casinos NZ has to offer.
Deciding to build lean muscle and adopt a healthy way of life can be tough in the beginning as you try and change your habits. However, once these new habits are in place, you’ll find it much easier to stick with your new lifestyle as you’ll start to see the benefits that this way of eating and exercise have for both your physical and mental health.