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Body builders and those whom wish to build muscle mass quickly learn which foods are best to help build muscle mass and maintain it.

It is a well known fact that the foods we put into our bodies are designed to work for and sometimes against what they are intended to do.  Understanding how certain foods react to specific systems within our body is an essential part of utilizing foods for their maximum potential. 

A very important element to consider however, is that it is not enough to just eat the right foods to build muscle mass; you must also exercise and work those muscles in order to achieve the results you desire.


Fish, which is rich in omega 3 fats such as tuna, trout, sardines, salmon, and halibut are high on the list of foods one should regularly eat if you want to build muscle mass.  These types of fish have amino acids, which are essential for our body to make and build muscles.  Amino acids also are like the foundation of building muscles and mending other tissues. 

In order to build muscles it depends upon the amount of amino acids or proteins we take into our bodies by way of the foods we eat.  Generally speaking, if you eat a healthy, balanced diet you should be getting sufficient amounts of proteins needed to supply your muscles with what they need to grow and repair; however, elderly people often do not get enough of the essential proteins in their diets and often need a vitamin supplement to balance the indifference.  The general recommendation is to eat two or three fish meals that are rich in the omega 3 proteins which help protect and build muscle and prevent muscles from degenerating.  

Sweet Potatoes

If you are trying to build muscle mass and are looking to improve and strengthen the process, sweet potatoes are one of the best foods that provide a great amount of potassium as well as essential antioxidants that are very beneficial in building and maintaining muscle mass.  The antioxidants are helpful in repairing the tissue of muscles as they break down and rebuild. 

Another great component in eating sweet potatoes and foods that have high amounts of potassium is that it helps to offset the effects of foods that produce acid such as dairy, meat products.  Acid producing types of food often will accelerate the loss of muscle mass you are trying to build. 

Other foods that are rich in potassium and the essential antioxidants you need to build and repair muscles can be found in peppers, melons, oranges, and lettuce.  For best results in building muscle mass it is recommended that you eat at least five to nine servings of these types of foods a day. 

Low Fat Yogurt

Low fat yogurt is rich in potassium, vitamin D, calcium, and high in protein; all of which are essential to building and maintaining strong muscle mass and repairing muscles as they break down and rebuild.  The vitamin D in low fat yogurt helps to promote strength and growth of your muscles; the lack of vitamin D causes muscles to weaken. 

When you are selecting the brand of low fat yogurt make sure you are buying the kind that is rich in vitamin D which can give you at least, if not more than 25% of what your body requires daily by just having one serving of yogurt.  It is recommended that you eat at least six to eight ounces of vitamin D rich yogurt daily to maintain healthy muscles and to keep them functioning properly.

Pumpkin Seeds

Essential minerals your body needs to maintain strong and healthy muscle tone and growth are iron, magnesium, copper, and manganese.  All these minerals can be found in pumpkin seeds and are a great source to help feed your muscles what they need to grow and build stronger.  Magnesium builds protein which muscles need to function properly.  Just one handful, generally an ounce of pumpkins seeds can provide half of the essential manganese you need each day.  These minerals, working together help to make your muscles have more endurance and also are beneficial to repairing muscles as they break down and rebuild into stronger muscle mass.


Carbohydrates are essential in a diet for somebody whom is trying to gain muscle mass and endurance.  Quinoa, which is a grain, is very high in these essential carbs which provide the body with a natural source of energy.  Quinoa is also high in potassium, protein and iron, which are also very essential elements to building strong and healthy muscles.

The reason carbohydrates are so important if you are trying to build muscle mass is because if you take in too few carbohydrates all the protein you are taking in is being used solely for energy and not being used to build new muscle tissue.  It’s important to remember that if you are taking in larger amounts of carbs you should certainly be using that extra energy towards building muscles or exercising or else those extra carbs will turn into fat and defeat the purpose.

Whole Eggs

Eggs are a great source of protein; the yolk containing the most nutrients.  Eggs are also high in vitamin A, D, and E and it is said that the cholesterol in eggs can increase testosterone levels.  Building strong muscles requires foods rich in protein, which you can find in eggs, which are inexpensive and easily accessible. 


Spinach is a food which is considered an alkaline food which helps prevent bone and muscle loss.  It is high in nutrients and as many vegetables are, provide your body with essential vitamins to maintain and strengthen muscle tone and build muscle mass. 


Tomatoes are essential to the proper functioning and maintenance of your muscles building routine.  It is recommended that you include a form of tomatoes in your diet such as using it in a sauce over pasta after your daily workout.  Tomatoes are high in lycopene, which is an essential protein needed in your diet; it is also highly regarded as a cancer prevention type of food.


The old saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is not just a myth; apples contain the highest amount of antioxidants along with cranberries.  It is recommended that you eat the peels of the apple and be especially selective when buying them; apples are commonly sprayed with types of pesticides which are harmful to your body.  Always wash your apples well or buy apples that are organic. 


Although water is not a food, it is, however, extremely important that you supply your body with enough water to feed your cells and help prevent your body from becoming dehydrated after a workout.  Replacing water into your body after a muscle building workout will help your muscles to recover better and maintain the muscle mass you have acquired. 

Understanding what types of minerals and vitamins certain foods have will help you to develop a healthy diet when doing strength building or muscle building exercises.  For maximum results combining these types of foods into your daily diet will increase your muscle mass and help maintain the muscles you’ve already built.