What Does Eating Clean Mean – Proper Nutrition for Bodybuilders
In the world of bodybuilding, you always hear people say oh yeah I eat clean, I watch my macros and a lot of other BS making dieting sound like a science, and to an extent, it can be.
Regardless of what your goal is either to become ripped and shredded or to build muscle mass, eating clean does have its benefits but some people go overboard.
The benefits of eating clean can be many including:
- More energy and stamina
- Eliminate excess body fat
- Improve muscle definition giving you a more aesthetic look
- Increase strength
- Pack on lean muscle
If you train hard and heavy you want to fuel your body with good fuel. If you have a high-performance car the higher the octane in the car the better it will perform, you are not going to put some low octane regular fuel into your car because it would run like crap; your body is the same way.
Breaking down your food intake is very simple, if you lifting heavy your body needs protein, carbs, and fat but not from complex sources, the simpler the food the better it is for you.
Carbs have a bad reputation but if you eat healthy carbs there is no need to worry, carbs come from fruits and vegetables, grains, rice, and oatmeal I even add yams and normal white potatoes to my meals, the big thing here is to avoid processed foods as much as possible, the less processed the better it is for you.
The best way to think of carbs is to consider its fiber content, the higher the fiber the better it is for you.
Don’t skimp too much on carbs because if your body is lacking carbohydrates it will make you weak as hell, if you don’t believe me try it one day or a couple of days in a row and you will notice your strength will become depleted.
Not getting enough of the right carbs is like hitting Superman with Kryptonite and you will be lifting and looking like “Stick Man”, carbs are important for helping you train at full force and high intensity.
Every bodybuilder knows that protein is king, if you want to build muscle you need plenty of protein, a minimum would be 1gram of protein for every pound of bodyweight,
I always try to shoot for 1.5 –2 grams of protein for every pound of body weight especially on days when I train heavy “legs and back”
Proteins can come from lean beef, chicken, fish, pork and even lamb, many avoid lamb because it has a tendency to have more fat, if I can find some good grass-fed lamb I'm on it, and if you can grill it that's even better because it will burn off a lot of the excess fat.
Fat is something that has a bad wrap, mainly because so many people carry around a lot of it, but most of that fat that is accumulated comes from bad food sources, bad fats are considered saturated or trans fats which are the worst.
Trans fats come from things like mayonnaise, margarine, vegetable oils, French fries, even those Pillsbury cinnamon rolls have trans fats.
Once again, if it's highly processed stay away, good fats come from olive, canola, avocado and coconut oil, which are natural.
Fish is another good source of fat or omega 3 fatty acids, you can get it from taking fish oil capsules or by eating fish, salmon, mackerel “yuck” and herring are packed with good amino 3 fatty acids.
Most nuts including peanuts, pecans, cashews, almonds are a good source of fats and they make a good healthy snack food.
As you can see eating clean is not rocket science it's just common sense, stay away from the processed foods and sugars and you pretty much have it made.
Splurging or cheat meals
One thing I see many people do when they begin to change or modify their diet is that they go overboard and eliminate all the things they like, only to fall back into the same old dietary trap they were in before they began eating clean which is a big mistake!
Life is short, I recommend eating those things you like once a week be it sweets, fast food or whatever you enjoy “in moderation” most consider this a cheat meal and that's ok, I do it, I just make up for it the next day at the gym with some extra heavy lifts or more cardio.
You can't expect overnight gains so take thing slow and in moderation and you will find that eating clean is not all that hard.