When trying to build lean muscle, many people focus all of their efforts on their workout. Though fitness will of course play into the ability to add lean muscle to the body, diet plays equally as important of a role. To get the lean muscle that you want, you need to eat a lot of protein—but not all protein is created equally.
The 7 foods represented on this list are the very best options. They are low in carbs and high in protein, which makes them some of the best out there.
If you’re on a high-protein, low-carb diet, fish is your best friend. “Fish is a brain-healthy lean protein, and fatty fish in particular helps you get the essential omega-3 fatty acids that are important for healthy arteries, reducing inflammation, and keeping the brain healthy,” says Moon. And each serving generally has 15 to 20 grams of protein (depending on the fish), with zero carbs.
Per 3-oz serving (salmon): 177 cal, 11 g fat (3 g sat), 0 g carbs, 0 g sugar, 50 mg sodium, 0 g fiber, 17 g protein.
Good news, avocado lovers: Your favorite fruit is one healthy fat you can gobble up while eating high-protein, low-carb. “You always want to make sure you’re eating a nutrient-rich diet that contains a balance of food groups — but paying attention to doing so is especially important when following a low-carb diet, when you may be limiting certain foods and nutrients,”. “Pairing a healthy fat such as avocado with your meal will help keep you satisfied for longer. Place a few slivers on top of an omelet or a salad.”
Another dairy snack that’s individually packaged and loaded with probiotics for digestive health is yogurt. I love this as a snack because of its high protein levels. Make sure to avoid yogurts with added sugar and for those avoiding dairy try Greek yogurt or almond or coconut-based ones.
Cottage cheese has long been known as a diet food, but it’s an excellent choice for building lean muscle. It’s low in calories but very high in protein per serving and so it should be a main focus in your eating plan. You can use it as a nice dip, enjoy it with fruit for breakfast, or make it a main part of any meal or snack. There are endless limits to how you can incorporate cottage cheese into your eating plan.
These nuts are great to munch on as mid-meal snacks. A 100-gm serving of pistachios contains 20 gm of protein and 10 gm of dietary fibre. So, go ahead and add pistachios to your breakfast smoothies and desserts.
6.Hard Boiled Egg
It may seem like a less significant source of protein when compared, but hard boiled eggs are a great addition to the menu. They are easy to prepare and convenient to grab on the go. Hard boiled is a great way to go as you don’t add anything and increase the calories, but you can also try poached or soft boiled if you prefer. Eggs are an excellent high protein food that really helps you to build lean muscle with fewer calories and fat than other options. A great way to start the day!Serving size 1 egg, 6 grams of protein, 80 calories.
One of the healthiest breakfast foods is oats, which contains high-quality fibre and almost 17 gm of protein, per 100 gm of its serving. Make sure you only opt for sugar-free oatmeal to avoid consuming unwanted calories.