There are a lot of supplements out there claiming to help you lose weight or gain muscle. The problem is that most of these are completely ineffective, unsafe, or just cost too much money. So lets look at some alternatives to these over-hyped supplements.
Even if your goal is simply to lose weight, you should focus on building some muscle because this will increase your metabolism, making your fat loss even easier and more rapid. The three foods below are great for fast muscle building nutrition.
Food #1: Green Tea
Green tea has several interesting compounds called catechins. The most interesting is epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG. This compound is a strong antioxidant that has been shown in many scientific studies to have anti-cancer benefits.
In addition, EGCG has been shown to help you lose weight by increasing your metabolism. The interesting thing is that EGCG is not a stimulant like caffeine or ephedrine. It increases your metabolism through an alternate mechanism.
To get this fat burning effect you can drink green tea or take a green tea extract supplement. You are looking for 200-400mg of EGCG per day. This is the equivalent of 1-2 cups of caffeinated green tea. If you prefer to drink decaf you should be aware that the processing of the decaffeinated version destroys most of the EGCG, so you will need 3-6 cups to get in your 200-400mg.
Food #2: Grass-fed Beef
Beef has gotten a bad rap in the press for being high in saturated fat and cholesterol. While this is certainly true of most beef, the beef from grass-fed cattle is a great source of fast muscle building nutrition
You see, cows were made to eat grass. Unfortunately, most of the beef out there is from cattle that were fed grains. This fattens them up faster and makes the farmers more profit, but its at the expense of your health. When grass-fed and grain-fed beef are compared there are huge differences in the health properties of each.
Here are the three main reasons grass-fed beef burns more fat and builds more muscle than grain-fed beef:
1. Grain-fed beef has more saturated fat than grass-fed beef. Saturated fat is more likely to be stored as fat, and has many negative consequences for your health.
2. Grain-fed beef has less omega-3 fatty acids than grass-fed beef. Omega-3 fatty acids are very important for optimal health, and they also help you to lose fat. This is good news for grass-fed beef, because it has omega-3 levels that rival salmon!
3. Grain-fed beef has less CLA than grass-fed beef. CLA is a fatty acid that has been shown to help you burn fat and gain muscle more efficiently. Grain-fed beef has almost no CLA, while grass-fed beef is full of it.
Food #3: Green vegetables
Weve all heard the eat your vegetables speech a hundred times. We know that vegetables are good for our health, but did you know that vegetables, green vegetables in particular, will help you lose fat and gain muscle much faster?
There are three ways that green vegetables help you build muscle and lose fat:
1. Fiber. The fiber in green vegetables slows down the digestion of your food. This causes nutrients to be released into the blood stream at slower rate which makes them less likely to be stored as fat.
2. Alkalinity. Your body likes to maintain a very specific pH balance. The problem is that most of the foods in a typical diet are very acidic and tend to throw-off your pH. Green vegetables, especially spinach, help to restore a balanced pH, which helps prevent muscle and bone loss.
3. Phytochemicals. Sure, there are a ton of vitamins and minerals and green vegetables, but the real power is in the phytochemicals. These compounds have health-promoting and fat-loss benefits that we are still discovering. This is why a multi-vitamin will never replace a solid diet of good foods.
So there you have it, 3 foods for fast muscle building nutrition. Try to incorporate each of these foods into your diet at least 2-3 times per week, if not more. Combine this with a well-designed training program and you will be on your way to more muscle and less fat in no time!