When it comes to building muscle, most people become so fixated on trying to intake as many calories as they can that the importance of vegetables is typically overlooked. However, while chicken may provide the protein needed for a muscle builder’s diet, vegetables contain essential nutrients that will greatly aid in the buildup of muscle in the long run.
Allows your muscle cells to grow back stronger.
Whenever you are training, your body’s muscle cells become somewhat damaged. Satellite cells come in and work together to repair these muscle cells and also generate more contraction proteins. This in turn will allow your muscle cells to grow back larger and contract better. However, in order to maintain this buildup and repair, your body needs nutrients to keep this process going. Vitamins and minerals that are found in vegetables will help provide energy for these satellite cells and allow them to work harder to keep your body’s muscles growing stronger.
Facilitates good digestion.
Whether it’s that piece of chicken or those boiled eggs, your body needs to be able to efficiently digest all of the food you intake. Green vegetables are high in fiber which will keep your intestinal walls clean and allow food to travel through at a steady pace. Fiber also prevents your body from breaking down muscle tissue when blood sugar levels are low by maintaining a consistent environment throughout your entire system. Furthermore, fiber aids in keeping a healthy heart, the most important muscle in your body.
Reduces belly fat.
Your muscles aren’t going to show if there’s a layer of belly fat covering them. Why hide all your hard work? We live in a society that is constantly exposed to xenoestrogens through cosmetics, herbicides, our water supply, etc. Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli or cabbage contain phytonutrients which have antiestrogen properties. These phytonutrients aid in lean muscle building and the reduction of xenoestrogens. Furthermore, asparagus can reduce water retention and contribute to the reduction of belly fat.
Can also provide protein.
When we think of protein, we usually think of animal meats. However, legumes such as beans and lentils also contain high protein amounts. Furthermore, legumes are not only high in protein, but they also contain fibers and vitamins – it’s a one-stop shop! Quinoa sprouts also contain large amounts of protein and only take a couple of hours to sprout.
Breaks down proteins for use.
After you’ve eaten all your protein-rich foods for the day, your body needs to be able to break these down into their simple protein molecules for your muscles to use. This breakdown is largely aided and catalyzed by nutrients that are found in muscle. The more vegetables you eat, the faster and easier your body learns to break them down for use. These nutrients will aid catalysts in your body to break down these protein molecules into simple amino acids and peptides for your muscles to use for energy and growth.
About the Author
Brett Warren is a biochemical engineer from Boston, Massachusetts who develops sports supplements for Force Factor. He has done extensive research on nutrition and is an expert on nutraceutical science. He also has a passion for fitness and health. Brett’s work at Force Factor is supplemented by an active family life with plenty of gym time and outdoor recreation.