When you’re just starting your life at the gym, you will most likely be there for two things: to build muscle or to lose weight. Either way,  you should have the correct nutritional plan to keep either of them going. A good nutritional plan should have the right amounts of all of the nutrients, including protein, carbohydrates, fat, vitamins, minerals, fibre and as many of the rest as possible.

This will help keep your body pumping and going forwards, but it will also help you put on more muscle than you can believe, and every single pound that you put on will be muscle instead of fat.

When you want to pack on as much muscle mass as possible, the primary nutrient that you need to consider is protein. This is because your body needs that protein to fix your bodily problems by repairing old cells and producing them anew.

However, the reason that we need to eat this much protein is that our body cannot synthesize it by itself, and when you’re exercising seven days a week your body is getting tired, which means you need to eat more protein to keep it running and rebuild the cells. For this, you need to eat a sufficient amount of protein at the correct time, so that your body doesn’t fall into a catabolic state.

1. Whole Eggs:

  • Eggs are the perfect protein. Not only do they contain all the essential amino acids required for muscle growth, but the fat and cholesterol found in eggs are a key part of a testosterone-boosting diet.
  • They are also extremely cheap and versatile – you can include them as part of your breakfast, lunch, or dinner. All of this makes them a staple of any muscle-building diet.
  • Eggs contain 6 grams of protein in a whole egg. There is half a gram of carbohydrates in every whole egg and around five grams of fat in every yolk. No fat in egg whites. There are 78 calories to a whole egg, out of which only 17 calories are in the egg white, which is why some people choose to throw away the yolks as they are very caloric.

Note: The cholesterol found in eggs has actually been shown to decrease the amount of LDL (bad cholesterol) in your body.

Related article: 8 Foods That Are Surprisingly Great For Losing Weight

2. Canned Tuna:

  • There are 30 to 40 grams of protein in a can of tuna, but to maximise effectiveness and minimise damage by unhealthy ingredients, I would suggest getting those packed in brine or spring water instead of oil or sauces.
  • Tuna is rich in vitamins A, B12 and niacin, but also the minerals selenium, phosphorus and magnesium. It can aid with your weight loss programme and it helps strengthen cell membranes.
  • However, don’t eat too much of it as you risk eating too much mercury, which can be harmful.

3. Milk:

  • Milk has 8-10 grams of protein for every 250ml glass and if you want to put on weight, milk is your new best friend. Remember GOMAD? That means “gallon of milk a day” and it’s the simple answer to the question of weight gain.
  • It contains a good source of both whey and casein protein (fast and slow-release). Plus, if you stick with whole milk – and get the organic kind – it also contains more calories and more omega-3.
  • Why do you want omega-3? It boosts cognitive function, lowers blood pressure, and even increases rates of muscle growth.

Related article: 9 Fitness Tips to Help You Build Muscle & Lose Fat

4. Ground Beef:

  • Ground beef has about 25 grams of protein per 100 grams, but if you really want to buy premium, get the ones that have a high lean beef content, such as 80 percent or more, and then rinse them with some warm water to lower their fat levels down by at least 50 percent.

5. Beans and Lentils:

  • These have 18 grams of protein per cup and they are also super cheap. Furthermore, they have a high fibre content and a lower fat content.
  • If you buy your beans and lentils dry and cook them at home, you are practically guaranteeing that they will only have the best nutrients in them.
  • Try to avoid pre-cooked food or store-bought ready-to-eat beans and lentils – they are so much better at home!

Related article: The Benefits Of Chicken For Extreme Training And Growth

6. Chicken Breasts, Salmon and Turkey:

  • Of course, famous bodybuilding foods such as chicken breasts, delicious salmon and juicy turkey chops need no introduction. These delicious treats have 23 to 25 grams of protein per 100 grams.
  • If you want your meat to have at least a bit of omega-3 fatty acids to keep your heart pounding regularly, pick the salmon.
  • Also, if you want to cut the fat content as much as possible as well as lower your cholesterol, cut away the skin pieces – they contain saturated fat in large amounts.

7. Almonds:

  • Almonds have 20 grams of protein per cup, they are much less allergenic than peanuts and peanut butter and they can be brought anywhere without any special equipment.
  • Throw them in a plastic bag, put it in your pocket and you’re good to go.

Related article: Good Clean Foods For Gaining Lean Muscle Mass

If you want to pack on lots of muscle you will need to keep your nutrition in check. Even though reading the fine print on all of your products will be dull, you will appreciate it as you will reap its benefits soon enough.

This makes sense because who wouldn’t want to pack on lean muscle instead of lumps of fat? If you just get fat from your food, you’re not doing anything right – but with the right amount of exercise and the right nutritional plan, you could work wonders for yourself.