Looking to bulk up? Consider your protein intake.

Looking to bulk up? Consider your protein intake.

When attempting to build-up your muscles, your body needs to make more of the filaments and proteins, actin and myosin. To produce these, the amino acids in our muscles must join together.

We have two types of amino acids – essential and non-essential. Essential amino acids cannot be made by our bodies alone. We have to get these in their original form through protein-rich food. However, our bodies can make non-essential amino acids from others that exist within our body.

How should protein be consumed to make a difference?

For athletes and anyone who is looking to build muscle, around 1.2-1.7g of protein per kg of their body mass should be consumed each day.

Eating the protein-rich foods such as meat, fish and eggs helps the digestive system break these down into those essential amino acids. Our bodies are then able to use these for a range of functions, one of which is the build-up of muscle!

If bulking is your goal, the best time to consume your protein is straight after a workout. To achieve your ideal results, try to take in equal amounts of protein and carbohydrates simultaneously. Carbs increase your insulin levels, which aids the muscles in taking in amino acids that are needed for your bulking process.

Try spreading your protein intake out to optimise your amino acid levels in the blood. Doing this will also promote muscle repair and growth for a better recovery.

It is important that you do not exceed 2g of protein per kg of body mass per day if you are trying to gain muscle. If you do, it could increase your levels of body fat and so not work as effectively.

You also need to be sure that your training regime is realistic. Ensure you train sensible based on your current size and strength. If you’re not sure what exactly you’re doing, it is advisable to seek help from a coach or a personal trainer. This way, you know you will get the most from your workout.

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