Yes, they can! Truth is that muscle growth is a blend of adequate caloric intake, optimum protein ingested at the right time and sufficient strength training workouts. But by adding these muscle friendly foods to your diet, you will notice that you can grow lean, hard muscle a lot faster.
The proteins in egg are considered to have the Highest Biological Value; so these are the best proteins that your body uses most efficiently. While the yolk is high in fats, it is also a great source of Vitamin B12 which facilitates fat breakdown and muscle contractions. Eggs are good for building muscle because they are also high in Vitamins B 6, B 12, D as well as E, Zinc, Iron, Riboflavin, Phosphorus and Folate.
When you want to build lean muscle mass, you want to increase your antioxidants intake. Not only will it maximize your fat burning capabilities, it will also give your immunity a boost and help you prevent and heal from injuries more effectively. Kiwis are one of the best sources of Vitamin C, with potent high doses of antioxidant.
In fact, researchers at Arizona State University conducted a study that showed those who didn’t eat enough Vitamin C had reduced fat burning capabilities while exercising because it is crucial for the synthesis of Carnitine; a molecule that plays an important role for optimum fatty acids oxidation.
Almonds are the world’s best source of ‘Alpha-Tocopherol’ Vitamin E, which gets absorbed in to the body readily and is a potent antioxidant. They offer the body the boost it needs to fight the effects of free radicals as well as facilitate muscle repair and maintenance. Almonds are also high in omega 3 fatty acids and high quality dietary fiber, both of which are important for muscle growth.
Packed with dietary fiber, avocados are great for those on a high protein diet; as such diets often lack enough fiber content. A single serving of avocado offers 13 grams of fiber, which means adding them to your diet will discourage fat accumulation and also reduce spikes in blood sugar levels.
Fish has high quality protein and is also an excellent source of Omega 3 fatty acids. The protein will help you build lean muscle mass, while the omega 3’s will ensure that fats are mobilized to fuel your workouts and kick-start ‘post workout’ recovery, rather than your body breaking down muscle mass to find the energy to repair and restore muscle wear and tear.
Call it ‘Liquid Energy’; Olive oil is also high in Omega 3 fatty acids and works like an anti catabolic agent by preventing muscle breakdown that could be a result of ‘Tumour necrosis factor- a’. This one is a highly unwanted cellular protein which can result in muscle wasting and weakness, but a healthy dose of olive oil will keeps it at bay to protect the muscle mass you worked so hard to build.
However, bear in mind, just eating large quantities of these foods will not help you build muscle, or else we would all have a chiseled physique without ever stepping in to the gym! Make sure you couple these foods with the right workout, adequate sleep and lots of water to see maximum results.