12 Best Foods For Muscle Building and Strength

If you’re serious about building muscle, then nutrition should be a big focus for you, as what you eat—or don’t eat—is just as important as how you exercise. Studies show that several nutrients such as proteins, folic acid and vitamin B12 play a role in muscle growth and performance.

Nutrition plays a critical role in muscle growth. Intense exercise (such as resistance training) causes trauma to muscle fibers, which then triggers a process to repair and replace those damaged muscle fibers. Muscle growth occurs when the rate of muscle protein synthesis (or the muscle repair process) is greater than the rate of muscle protein breakdown. Nutrients like protein help fuel muscle synthesis, while decreasing muscle protein breakdown.

Indeed, protein helps you grow and repair muscle, reduce hunger and burn fat, according to Karisa Karmali, a sports nutritionist and owner of Self-Love and Fitness in Ontario, Canada.Protein powder is an excellent way to supplement protein on the go, says Karmali. Most brands contain about 10 to 30 grams of protein per serving, which makes protein powder a great way to boost your protein reserve pre- or post-workout. What’s more, most powders dissolve readily in water or milk, and can easily be added to smoothies. Protein powder comes in a variety of formats, including whey protein and plant-based protein.One piece of skinless, boneless chicken breast contains about 55 grams of protein, which makes it a great muscle building food. But beyond protein, chicken is also a great source of micronutrients such as iron and vitamin B12, which may also support muscle building

Eggs are one of the best forms of complete protein (a protein source that contains all nine amino acids), according to MacPherson. One large boiled egg contains about 6 to 7 grams of protein. They are also packed with other nutrients and healthy cholesterol, which support muscle growth.

Both whole eggs and egg whites have been shown to improve muscle building, but whole eggs may have an edge. According to a small study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, consuming whole eggs shortly after a resistance training session increased muscle protein production more efficiently than egg whites