When you want to increase your strength and tone up in a healthy way, increasing your muscle mass without adding fat is vital.
When you want to increase your strength and tone up in a healthy way, increasing your muscle mass without adding fat is vital. Sometimes referred to as ‘’building lean muscle mass’’, this post explores what lean muscle mass is, how to build it and meals to sustain it.
WHAT IS LEAN MUSCLE MASS?
Since muscle is already lean (i.e. free of fat), when people refer to lean muscle mass they either mean their lean body mass (which includes the mass of your body water, bone density, skin and organs in addition to muscle) or, more specifically, their skeletal muscle mass (your lean body mass when you’ve stripped away everything except muscle).
The benefit of building lean muscle mass is primarily greater strength, which leads to improved posture and bone health, better balance and coordination, as well as protection against injury, weight gain and reduction in muscle mass as you age. Overall, building muscle without additional fat helps you live a healthier life for longer.
HOW TO BUILD LEAN MUSCLE MASS
The best way to build muscle without fat is two-fold. It starts with exercise and diet.
Exercise to build lean muscle mass
Resistance or strength training is the best exercise to increase lean muscle mass. This includes: weight lifting with dumbells, gym weights or medicine balls; squats, crunches, chest/shoulder presses; cycling; and core-building exercises such as yoga and Pilates. As well as weights, try introducing resistance bands into your exercise routine.
Diet to build lean muscle mass
When it comes to diet, to complement your weight training and help build lean muscle mass, you need to make sure you are consuming quality sources of protein in addition to a healthy intake of nutrients, fats and carbohydrates, to give you energy. Protein converts into muscle, so to build lean muscle mass, you need to adjust your macros in your diet to ensure you consume more calories from high-protein foods. These foods include eggs, tofu, salmon, lean meats (lean red meat or chicken or turkey breast), beans, nuts and seeds, as well as dairy such as Greek yoghurt and cottage cheese. You can also supplement your intake with protein powders.
MEALS TO BUILD LEAN MUSCLE MASS AND SUSTAIN IT
Getting the balance right in your meal plan isn’t always easy, especially when trips to the supermarkets mean you have to fight off temptations from all the wrong food groups and spend hours studying nutritional labels. The best way to incorporate the above foods into your diet is to try and create your favourite types of food or meals but with an emphasis on protein. At Diets2Go we’ve done the hard work for you. Some of our meals include:
Piri Piri Thighs and Sweet Wedges – A healthy take on this tasty classic, you’ll get a hearty portion of lean piri piri cooked chicken meat with comforting sweet potato wedges and a colourful array of veggies, perfect for a Friday night treat. And at just 349 calories, it’ll slot right into your diet plan.
Pesto Pine Nut Tagliatelle – As beautiful to look at as it is to eat, this gluten-free and vegan pasta dish uses homemade pesto pasta and is packed with pine nuts and sesame seeds to keep you full. At just 370 calories per meal, it’s an easy midweek dinner.
Basil King Prawns with Noodles – Get your fill of Omega-3 fatty acids and protein from the generous helping of king prawns, and all the nutrients you need from the spring onions, rocket and radish. At little over 258 calories per portion, this is a takeout treat without the stress.
You’ll also find breakfast, lunch and snack options perfect for a high-protein, low-fat diet in our menu. From scrambled eggs and protein waffles and pancakes, to lunchtime pasta dishes, bean burgers, snackable cookies, protein balls and pressed juices, we have a delicious menu to choose from.
BUILD LEAN MUSCLE THE EASY WAY
Staying lean and fit isn’t easy, which is one of the reasons why we created Diets2Go with meal plans customised to your needs. We aim to do the hard work for you, giving you one less thing to think about. For more information on our meals, and our deliveries which are available across the UK – to areas including Manchester, Liverpool, London and Glasgow – please get in touch with us today.
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