What to Eat to Lose Weight & Gain Muscle
I'm often asked what to eat to lose weight and gain muscle. If you want to fuel your muscles instead of your fat stores, then make eating clean a top on your priority list. Eating clean consist of eating protein with eat meal and snack. I've enjoyed the benefits of eating protein with every meal I eat, including snacks. It keeps me lean and aids in keeping me in tip-top shape.
To sculpt a lean physique you need a diet packed with macronutrients which consists of lean proteins, complex carbohydrates and good fats. If you train at least 5 days a week consistently and aren't getting the results you want, then you need to take a step back and think twice about your diet.
Protein is essential to build and sculpt a lean physique. Protein is a must in any fitness enthusiast diet, but is there such thing as too much protein? Believe it or not, but you can have too much protein! If you eat too much at once the body can’t utilize it and will store it as unwanted fat. So to keep from eating too much at one time it's important to spread out your protein into the proper servings with each meal you eat.
Eating protein with each meal and snack will keep your metabolism burning optimally while maintaining and building muscle mass; however, if you eat too much protein in any one meal, it will end up as stored energy aka fat. Not only will you gain weight if you eat too much protein at once, but you will also make your poor liver and kidneys go into overdrive trying to processes it.
How Much Do You Need?
A good rule of thumb is to aim for about 25 to 35 grams of protein with each meal and snack. When you train hard in the gym your body requires more protein, aim for .5 to 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight depending on your activity level. Divide your weight by 20 or 30 to see how many grams of protein to have with each meal and snack, that will make sure you get the needed protein each time you eat a small muscle-building meal. You can use the handy macronutrient calculator to figure out how much you need of macronutrient.
It may seem daunting to eat protein all the time but it's not. All you need to do is spread out the much-needed protein into mini meals throughout the day by eating every few hours. It’s best to eat every three to four hours. Eating small meals few hours apart is a surefire way to reach your fitness goals sooner.
Fill your plate with lean protein, carbs, fresh veggies and good fats. To help with portion control, use the size of the palm of your hand for protein and a clenched fist for complex carbs and veggies. Eating a small meal every few hours is the best way to keep your body’s metabolism in high-gear and to keep your muscles fueled all day long.
Excellent sources of protein are lean chicken breast, eggs, whey protein powder, fat-free cottage cheese, turkey breast (not deli meat), tilapia, tuna, lean steak/roast and buffalo. Stay away from deli meats, fatty meats and high fat hamburger.
Plan and prepare your meals in advance to avoid reaching for fast foods or processed foods when crunched for time. There’s no reason you can’t eat clean even when you go out to eat. When eating at restaurants, have a grilled chicken breast or fish (grilled dry) and a salad with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, on the side.
When out and about, you can also have low carb whey protein bars handy if you’re too busy to eat a sit down meal. You can also take a shaker bottle with a serving of protein powder and a water bottle to prepare a protein drink by adding water and shaking it to mix it well. Always have an apple and fresh raw almonds with you to have with your protein drink for a perfect on the fly meal that’s packed with the nutrition your body needs to shed fat and build muscles.
Eating often throughout the day isn't as difficult as it may seem, it just takes preparedness and determination to stay focused on your fitness and weight loss goals. Make Exercise a high priority to maintain a healthy, vibrant lifestyle. By exercising regularly and making eating clean a top priority your body will shed weight and gain muscle faster and with less effort.
About the Author:
Carol Whitaker is the author of Ridiculously Happy! The Secret to Manifesting the Life & Body of Your Dreams. Carol is a highly sought after Life Transformation Coach and Lifestyle Fitness Coach, she is well known for the amazing transformations she creates in her clients’ lives. Carol is dedicated to empowering women around the world to love and believe in themselves fully. Carol is a Media Expert for ABC4 Good Things Utah and is a Motivational Speaker, she is passionate about inspiring and motivating men and women to live their best lives. Carol is an ongoing featured expert on national media and online websites. Carol is a happily married mother of three. Connect with Carol on her professional profile LinkedIn and Facebook to receive her health, fitness & happiness tips and by following her on Twitter. Visit CarolWhitaker.com to learn more about her services along with tools and secrets to discover how to transform your life to that of your dreams.