It is often said that bodybuilding and vegetarian diet doesnt go hand in hand. To build muscles, one need to take high amount of protein which is mostly available in non-vegetarian diet. But does that mean vegetarians cannot build muscles?
More and more people are catching up on the vegetarian diet these days, but saying no to non-veg doesn’t mean that you are bidding adieu to your muscle building goals as well. You might often think that you will not be able to achieve your bodybuilding goal by following a vegetarian diet because a lot has been said about the importance of protein in bodybuilding, required in large amounts to increase muscle mass.
There are plenty of ways in which vegetarian bodybuilding can be done despite the fact that they are not relying on meat products to fulfill their daily nutritional requirements.
No Compromise In Calories Intake
For a vegetarian bodybuilder, it is important to get enough amount of calories, to have a reserve of protein in their body. If you will consume less number of calories, your body is likely to rely on protein for fuel required for day to day activities. Any type of cut down on calories will only lead to a deficit in protein.
Include Plenty of Fruits and Veggies in Your Diet
Because you are relying only on a vegetarian diet, make sure you include a lot of fresh produce like fruits and vegetables, also known as top vegetarian foods for bodybuilding; in your diet plan. They are the most trusted source for you to meet your daily requirements of high quality nutrients along with antioxidant protection that helps in keeping your immune system strong.
Additionally, do not underestimate the power of legumes and chickpeas when it comes to building muscles. They are one of the most key sources of protein for vegetarians. Also they are low in fat, which makes them an ideal and healthy post workout snack option.
Replace Your Rice With Quinoa
If you are among those millions who simply cannot part way with their habit of eating rice then consider replacing it with a healthy option, Quinoa. It tastes like brown rice and contains higher amount of protein in comparison to the same. To elucidate this fact, studies have proved that quinoa is a complete vegetarian protein for bodybuilders, which helps in the process of muscle building.
Make Use OF Egg White and Soy Protein
If you are an eggetarian then consuming egg white protein powder is a wise move, else you can rely on soy protein powders to meet your daily protein requirements. These protein powders will dramatically boost your protein intake especially during muscle building. Make sure you combine them with other sources of protein like legumes, which are also a must haves for your diet.
Opt For Short But Intense Workouts
Being a vegetarian, you should focus on short but intense workout sessions, as it will help in preventing the loss of muscle mass; which often occurs after long workout sessions and requires high amount of protein for your body to get through the strain. If you go for long workout sessions, then your protein needs will get elevated, which will become difficult for you to meet with vegetarian diet.
Go Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian
Though this tip is very subjective and completely depends on your beliefs, but it will be good if you can follow Lacto -Ovo vegetarian diet, which means including both egg and dairy products in your diet. Egg, egg whites, cottage cheese, yogurt, cheese, and milk are an excellent bodybuilding foods and sources of protein that can give required boost to your protein intake options. In short going lacto-ovo vegetarian will make your life as a bodybuilder much easier.
Utilize Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds are a great way to fill the voids for your daily nutrient requirement, thus try to include plenty of them in your diet. While nuts are an excellent source of fat that will give you long lasting form of energy, seeds will give you essential fatty acids, which are mostly present in fish and fish oil. A handful of nuts will give a significant boost to your calorie intake, add in a portion of flaxseeds oil in your diet to meet your nutrient requirements.
While these tips can help you go a long way in meeting your muscle building goals while following your vegetarian diet, consider adding supplements in the form of iron and branched chain amino acids along with vegetarian bodybuilding protein supplements to increase the effectiveness of your workout.
Below is a sample vegetarian diet plan to help you understand how you should balance your meal with vegetarian bodybuilding recipes.
Vegetarian Diet Plan For Bodybuilders
What To Eat
|Early Morning (6:00AM)||One fruit, 2 boiled eggs and one scoop whey protein in water|
|Breakfast (8:30AM)||A bowl of oats or wheat flakes or quinoa with skimmed milk and some nuts or a peanut butter toast with a milkshake.|
|Mid Morning (11:30PM)||A glass of butter milk made from low fat yogurt|
|Lunch (2:30PM)||2 Whole wheat/bajra/jowar chappatis or a bowl of brown rice with green veggies, a bowl of dal and cottage cheese|
|Mid Evening (5:30PM)||Sprouts or boiled pulses (chickpeas/black chana) with 2 eggs, low fat cheese slice and whey with water|
|Dinner (8:30PM)||1 Whole wheat/bajra/jowar chappatis or a bowl of brown rice with green veggies, a bowl of dal and cottage cheese, fresh fruit salad|
Note: If you are not including eggs in your vegetarian diet then replace them with tofu with the same protein amount.