5 Best Foods For Building Muscle

best foods to build muscle

By Andrea Falcone, RD

It’s not just protein powders that will elicit larger bis and tris – these whole foods pack a powerful punch, too.

1. Soybeans

This plant protein contains higher doses of amino acids, meaning you receive a full dose of fuel to help repair torn muscle fibres. Remember, soy milk and tofu fall into this category, too.

2. Eggs

We’ve included these for their leucine content, one of the branched-chain amino acids found in muscle that’s broken down during exercise to provide energy. It helps to improve muscle protein synthesis following a workout and prevents muscle damage during heavy exercise, ultimately speeding up your recovery.

3. Ricotta Cheese

It’s the whey from dairy products, not casein and bovine milk proteins, that have proven time and time again to be more bioavailable, leading to rapid protein synthesis – or, in other words, more efficient muscle-building power. Ricotta cheese is rich in whey, so pile it on.

4. Cashews

Copper is a mineral your body can’t produce on its own, so it must be found in your diet. Cue cashews. Involved in energy production, copper also helps to build new tissue by holding elastin and collagen together. Add a quarter cup of cashews to your morning oatmeal to help repair muscles following a hard workout.

5. Fat-Free Milk

Studies show that timing your milk consumption (primarily fat-free) post-workout is effective in promoting increases in lean-body mass, strength, muscle hypertrophy, and decreases in body fat.