I recently spoke to a number of people about their protein sources. While many newbie bodybuilders trusted their 5lbs flavored protein powder to do the trick, many others were clueless about protein diversity.
It goes without saying that the Whey protein you invest in is probably one of the best types of proteins when it comes to muscle building but it’s not the only one.
I like to believe that protein diversity is much more important than just getting your dose of protein from a bottle. That’s not to say that whey, casein protein, and bottled bovine protein is not good, it does have its place, but not as big a place as some like to assume.
There are certain protein sources that are better than others because they break down more easily and get absorbed into the muscles which support lean muscle growth.
Particularly important are branched chain amino acids like L-valine, L-leucine, and L-isoleucine.
The other element you need to consider is bioavailability. This is a percentage value of the total protein value of what will be absorbed and used by your body.
Take for instance that most people will at best absorb just 76% of the protein from rice consumed as compared to 97% from eggs.
Below we look at some of the best protein sources for muscle building, this is especially good for people who are leaning in favor of going on a high protein diet to bulk up by also get shredded.
Without a doubt eggs are the most versatile source of protein and which is why there is probably no bodybuilder on earth that does not eat eggs.
Though how it should be eaten differs from one person to the next. Egg protein ranks a close second in terms of biological value right after whey protein, with near 100% of the protein content absorbed by the body and especially the muscles.
Eggs contain 6 grams of great quality protein, with the yolk containing a cocktail of various nutrients. Though some people may point to the 5 grams of fat, eggs actually have the good type of fat.
But consuming too many could mean that you overshoot your daily caloric intake. Though if you want to avoid the fats simply stick to consuming the egg whites.
Some people may shy away from consuming eggs because of the so-called “high cholesterol” content.
However, there is adequate research to show that the body adjusts its own cholesterol production over time to make up for what is consumed.
Plus, eating eggs regularly has not been proven to raise cholesterol levels in individuals that lift weights.
Lean meat (red)
Lean red meat as it is called has the highest concentration of muscle building micro-nutrients. So, it’s no wonder why clean red meat is an all time favorite for bodybuilders, me included.
The high amounts of natural creatine coupled with zinc, iron and b-vitamins can result in that insane pump people report right after exercising.
The creatine helps people lift more weights by expanding the size of the muscle by increasing water retention.
The leaner the pieces of meat you eat, the lower will be your fat consumption. A couple of recommended cuts are: top round roast, sirloin tip side steak, bottom round roast and top sirloin steak.
Lean cuts of Poultry
Both chicken and turkey are great for that extra boost of muscle building with the added benefit of burning fat. White cuts of poultry are low in fat, but has high-quality protein. It is also great for people who don’t necessarily like eating red meat.
PORK CHOPS (BONELESS)
Even though not all bodybuilders will swear by it, but lean pork is pretty high in protein with great bio-availability. Take for instance that pork tenderloin has just 1 gram of fat for every ounce of protein.
Though I’m not a raging advocate of drinking milk, but it does have its place muscle building. Skim milk is a good protein source with the added benefit of revitalizing your body with much-needed calcium.
Plus, there is limited research to suggest that milk can actually make your body excrete fat.
High Protein Sea Food
If there was one all-round great muscle building protein source I’d personally recommend, it would have to be fish i.e. cod, salmon, tilapia, and halibut.
Though I’d always opt for fresh sea fish as opposed to ones that are farmed. But all fish is high in essential fatty acids like Omega 3, DHA and EPA, which regulates your weight, feeds your brain and improves joint strength. Shrimp, scallops, crab, and lobster are all equally good.
So how much should you be consuming?
Well, the most effective way to eat the right amount of protein is to consume 1 gram for every pound of body weight. So, a person weighing 180 pounds should probably be consuming around 180 grams of protein spread out through the day.