Eating Guide For Body Builders

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The most important aspect of bodybuilding is not the exercise plan but the diet.  Even if you follow all your workout sessions to the T, unless you watch out what you eat, all your efforts will be useless.

Nutrition is necessary for muscle growth and recovery.  Compared to a normal lifestyle, those into bodybuilding need to intake more calories through a balanced diet to endure the workouts and develop the muscles.

Before you embark on the journey of bodybuilding build a detailed nutrition plan along with the workout plan.  Following both of them properly will guarantee you good results.

What not to eat?

Well, it is very easy to say what not to eat.  Stay away from all kinds of junk food like fries, pizzas, cakes, excess of caffeine, aerated drinks as they are all high in calories and sugar content.  They will do your body more harm than good as though they take care of the hunger pangs; they never allow you to burn the excess fat in your body.  So, all you aspirant body builders out there control your junk food cravings.

Indulge yourself once in a while, but do not make them an inseparable part of your lifestyle.

What should you eat?

Eat healthy and in proper quantity.  Do not overeat nor under eat.  The first thumb rule is never missing your breakfast as after a good night’s sleep, your body needs the nutrients and energy for enduring the whole day ahead.  Your body has fasted for the duration you were sleeping, hence its very necessary for it to get back its energy packets.

Instead of eating the usual breakfast, supper and dinner, distribute the meal into 5-6 portions throughout the day by starting pre lunch and post lunch snacks.  Distribute proteins, good fats and carbohydrates throughout these meals.

Dieticians recommend that he following items should be included in daily diets of body builders:


Proteins are a necessary energy source for our body.  Intake should be higher as they give the strength to the muscles.  It is recommended to have a protein rich diet after workout and before going to sleep.

Egg white is an excellent source of protein.  It contains protein in ready to use form for the body and hence on consumption gets easily absorbed into the body.  Its carbohydrate and fat content is less and it also provides vitamins and minerals to the body.

All bodybuilders give egg whites the topmost position in their diets.  Stay away from the yellow part of the egg.


Again, fish is a very good source of proteins.  Though its fat content is also high, the omega 3 fatty acids present in it help in immunity building.  Fish like tuna, trout and sardines are some of the examples of instant protein rich food.


Chicken is also recommended for its high protein and low fat contents.  Chicken breast has lesser fat compared to thigh, so it is good to stick to the chicken breast.

Turkey breast

Turkey breast is the white meat which is a wonderful source of proteins.  The rest of the meat is darker shade and is not recommended for bodybuilders because of its higher fat content.


Oats contains slow burning carbohydrates which are needed before you start your workouts.  During workout, energy is derived from the energy present in your muscles.  Carbohydrates which burn slowly help in enduring longer stretches of workout thereby avoiding damage to the muscles.

Fibre foods

Beans and legumes are excellent source of proteins and fibres.   Much has been talked off protein rich foods, but fibre is equally essential.  It helps in maintaining clean digestive system and regularises bowel movement.  It also helps in ensuring that insulin reaches our muscles on time during workouts.

Flax seeds are another source of fibre.  It also contains omega 3 fatty acids.  Omega 3 fatty acids are universally acknowledged to help the body’s growth as well as functioning of brain.   Incorporating it in diet helps to provide energy to muscle, recover from muscle strains and in removal of excess body fat.


Compared to other foods, beef though good source of proteins, iron and vitamins; it is also rich in fats.  So it should be had in moderation preferably alternate days.  Opt for lean beef which has lesser fat content.

Fresh fruits and vegetables

Do not focus only on proteins and carbohydrates.  To make a meal perfectly balanced, it is very important to have fresh fruits and vegetables as they give our body antioxidants, vitamins and minerals.  Asparagus, broccoli, spinach, sweet potato, banana, peas, corn, carrot, strawberries, walnuts, etc are some of the stuff that most bodybuilders incorporate into their diets.

Food supplements

The market is flooded with many dietary supplements like protein shakes, protein supplements, multivitamins.  These are recommended in case the diet is not able to take care of all the nutrition requirements.  Stay away from steroids which though act as instant muscle building method, it causes your body harm in long run.

Low fat milk is good for the body.  Many wrestlers have revealed that milk is the secret of their energy.  Low fat dairy products like cottage cheese help in building muscles.  Drink lots of water as it hydrates your body which is undergoing wear and tear.

Post your workout, the muscle reserve energy is almost over and body needs at least 30-60 minutes to start the process of recovery and building muscle mass.

This is the right time to have whey protein shake as it gives instant energy to the body due to its easy chemical composition.

Refer to the diet plans of successful bodybuilders and plan out your meals using those.  The above list is not exhaustive and depending on your eating habits, likes/dislikes, work out a personalised diet chart.  Keep changing the items as eating the same thing over and over again will cause you to get bored and lose your focus on the main goal of bodybuilding.  It is always recommended that homemade food is the best as you can then control the proportion of ingredients are per your calorie needs.

Category: Nutrition

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