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The Foods you need to be Eating to Build Muscle

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The Foods you need to be Eating to Build Muscle


Published by D Brown for Brett Janes in Health

If you have a goal of sculpted muscles and are working hard to reach it at the gym, you also need to seriously think about what you’re doing in the kitchen. After all, the food you eat is your fuel for energy, repair and health, all of which will have an impact on your body’s appearance.

People who say that ‘abs are built in the kitchen’ aren’t wrong, and we’ve compiled a list of some of the best foods that prove it. Aim to incorporate some of these into your daily diet and you’ll soon see optimum results from all of your efforts.


Shellfish is a fantastic source of protein, but we’ve chosen to focus on prawns as they’re really popular and surprisingly versatile. In fact, you can even buy ready-to-eat prawns, which you can enjoy cold. They also taste great with sweet chilli dipping sauce, which will also help your body to burn them off quicker, too.

Brown rice

Carbs are essential for energy and weight gain, but it’s important to know which ones are the best for building muscle, not fat. Two heaps of brown rice is good for increasing your carb intake healthily, and is great as part of a salad or curry.

Chicken breasts

A chicken breast sandwich is the perfect pre-workout snack as it contains the ideal balance of protein and carbs. The carbs will slow down the breakdown of protein too, meaning you have energy for longer and it will also be good in terms of repair.


Bread provides a good source of carbs and therefore energy when eaten sparingly, and by looking for breads with a lower fat content than others. Whole meal or brown bread is good – especially with lots of seeds, which provide useful amino acids, essential for repair and recovery. You could also eat other forms of bread, like pita, wraps and even the occasional naan with a curry, too. 

Protein shakes

An instant way to help you optimise your muscle building results is to take a protein supplement. You can take them in many forms, and the most popular is generally a whey powder protein shake. Check out the best whey protein powder for your individual needs. Lots of them now even come in different flavours too, which means they’re a lot more appealing than they used to be.


As mentioned above, seeds are surprisingly good for both muscle growth and repair as they provide a high source of amino acids – something which your body can’t make on its own. Seeds make a great low calorie, low fat snack too if you find yourself getting hungry between meals.


There’s a reason why Pop Eye was such a fan of spinach. The nitrates found in spinach form proteins that improve muscle contraction, so when your mum told you to eat your greens to be ‘big and strong’, she wasn’t lying. Aim to eat a large handful a day.


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