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The body cannot survive without the proper intake of foods, nor can the body grow muscle tissue without sufficient nutrition.
Getting the right nutrition is a vital part of your training program. If you don't feed your body properly you wont get the results and the physique that you desire.
The main questions of nutrition and diet are what should I eat, when should I eat and how much should I eat.
The first main ingredient in any successful bodybuilders diet is PROTEIN.
Protein is essential, it is the building blocks for muscle growth, strength and other metabolic functions of the body. Consumption of protein should be roughly 1.35 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight. E.g. A 200-lb athlete should consume 270g of protein every day.
To enable our bodies to use this protein effectively we need to have roughly 5 to 6 meals a day about three hours apart. For the 200-lb athlete each meal would consist of about 45 - 54g of protein.
The next criteria is CARBOHYDRATES.
Carbohydrates are the first source of energy the body uses during exercise. Therefore it is essential to take in enough carbs to provide enough energy for your workouts.
Carb consumption should be roughly 2g per pound of bodyweight. E.g. A 200-lb athlete should consume 400g of carbs a day. This works out about 65 - 70g in each meal.
Carbs can be broken down into two groups - Simple and complex.
Simple carbs are those found in fruit and processed sugar, these get absorbed very quickly in to the body and should really only be taken after a workout to raise your blood sugar level back up to normal.
Complex carbs, starch and cellulose, are found in potatoes, rice, pasta etc. Complex carbs slowly filter into the bloodstream giving the body a more constant flow of energy.
The next criteria is FATS.
Fats serve three purposes in the body.
1. They are the major source of stored energy.
2. They cushion and protect the vital organs of the body.
3. They act as an insulator protecting us from the cold.
Fats are the most calories dense nutrients. In each gram of fat there are 9 calories as opposed to 4 calories in a gram of protein or carbohydrate.