What Does Muscle Gain Mean?

Increasing muscle definition is just a simple idea of increasing muscle mass and decreasing body fat, especially the fat between the skin and muscle called subcutaneous fat.One key factor in losing body fat while maintaining muscle mass is the speed of weight loss. Keep reading to learn why that helps!

Benefits of Muscle Gain

Have you ever seen a bodybuilder and wondered, "Why did he or she go to the effort to build all those muscles?" Well, we’ll tell you it’s all in the thrill of being able to achieve your goals. But keeping that aside, here are a few benefits of gaining muscle to get you started.

  • It helps increase your metabolic rate causing you to burn more fat.
  • Muscle fortifies the bones, ligaments and tendons. Building up your muscles also builds and strengthens your bones and tendons, which can help to prevent broken bones and tendon sprains and tears. Preventing any muscle fatigue too.
  • To fix the blood sugar problem, you could eliminate carbs by following a ketogenic diet. Or, you could eat a more moderate amount of carbs and create space to store them by building muscle. The second option is smarter in our opinion.
  • Building up your muscles with strength training will improve your fitness and conditioning levels.
  • When you feel an emotion, you take on the posture of that emotion. So the next time you feel sad, drop ten.

Foods To Eat

With so much information available online, it tends to get confusing and overwhelming to decide what to eat. We have made it easy for you with a list of 10 things you can include in your diet that’ll help you build lean muscle. 


Do you know that egg yolks contain more protein than egg whites?

Well, one thing has been clear, you need a protein-rich diet for muscle growth. Rich in high-quality protein, healthy fats and nutrients like Vitamin B and Choline, eggs also contain large amounts of the amino acid leucine, which is particularly important for muscle gain.

So here’s your green flag to make a sunny-side-up for your next breakfast meal!

Chicken Breast

Probably one of the best ways to include protein in your “muscle gain diet”, chicken breasts are packed with high-quality protein, B vitamins niacin and B6. While the necessary vitamins will keep you active and get those physical activities going, good protein will ensure optimum muscle gain.

Cottage Cheese

A crowd’s favourite in India (especially with the vegetarians), cottage cheese aka paneer is another great food that’ll help you gain muscle. It’s low-calorie cheese that is not just rich in protein but also essential nutrients.

While the nutrient profile depends on the fat level of milk, you’ll surely find some good carbs and fats, sodium, phosphorus, calcium and Vitamin B12 in there. 

Try and incorporate some leafy greens for an even impactful punch. We guess palak paneer is in order.

Soya Beans

The amazing thing about soya beans that not a lot of people realise is that they can be eaten whole or made into a variety of products such as soy milk, nuggets, tofu etc.

Great chicken alternative for vegans soy protein often serves as a major source of this important nutrient.

Soybeans are also a particularly good source of vitamin K, iron and phosphorus.


Speaking of Tofu, it is a rich source of good protein, fat and carbohydrates. 

Soy protein, found in foods like tofu and soybeans, is considered one of the highest-quality plant proteins which is why it’s a great option for you if you prefer a vegan or vegetarian diet.

It’ll also keep your bones strong by providing high calcium content.


Also known as Garbanzo beans, the protein in chickpeas is considered lower quality than animal sources. However, it can still be a great addition to your muscle gain diet plan.

Chickpeas contain significant amounts of all essential amino acids except sulphur-containing amino acids, which can be complemented by adding cereals to the daily diet. Be it hummus or your everyday dal tadka, have chickpeas today!


Unlike popular opinion, milk is not bad for bodybuilding. In fact, studies have shown that people tend to gain muscle mass when they drink milk in combination with weight training. It’s beneficial for muscle growth as it contains the perfect balance of nutrition to support muscle growth and replenish depleted glycogen stores after intense exercise.


The best source for alpha-tocopherol is vitamin E, a form that gets best absorbed by your body. 

Almonds contain high amounts of protein, Vitamin E, magnesium and phosphorus. Vitamin E is a potent antioxidant that can help prevent free-radical damage after heavy workouts.

Replace your craving for some salty-fried food by having a handful of almonds as a snack.


Bodybuilders and people trying to add muscle mass sometimes include canned tuna as a staple of their diets. Packed with protein, Vitamin A, and several Vitamin B, these nutrients are important for optimal health, energy and exercise performance.

However, eating too much Tuna can also lead to problems with mercury contamination. So it’s best to keep it a balanced diet.

Brown Rice

While good protein is important for muscle building, carbohydrates are essential to survive those vigorous workout routines too. Cooked brown rice provides you with both protein and good carbs to sustain physical activity. 

So skip your average rice since brown rice is an effective way of ensuring the body has enough protein to effectively support protein synthesis and build muscle mass.

Starchy Vegetables

Think potatoes, green peas, green lima beans, cassava, broccoli, spinach, zucchini and mushroom! Also, most people probably don’t associate vegetables with muscle building and strengthening, but it’s true.

Calcium is an important nutrient for maintaining strong bones. But, more importantly, calcium is needed for muscles to move and for nerves to carry signals between the brain and the rest of the body.

Foods To Avoid

Now that you know what to include in your diet, here are a few things you need to cut off too. Keep it simple by avoiding just these three things. Check out what they are!


Drinking in excess can lead to severe health problems such as liver damage, obesity, and cancer. Alcohol can negatively affect your ability to build muscle and lose fat, especially if you consume it in excess.

Added Sugar

Over the past few years, sugar has developed a bad reputation, and rightly so. Excess sugar in the bloodstream is unhealthy so the body immediately stores it as fat. 

But what’s the best time to have sugar, you ask?

After your workout. When your body is tired and has used all the energy storage, that’s probably the best time to have some carbs and fats to replenish. sugar causes increased blood sugar levels. Increasing your blood sugar levels will pump the excess sugar into your muscles, and since your muscles need all the sugar they can get, there will be no excess sugar to store as fat!

Fried & Fast Food

Dumplings, aerated drinks, pizzas and burgers, don’t we all just love them? But when you’re focused on gaining muscle and staying fit, it’s more of a love-hate relationship with processed food. Do you want to have it but always feel guilty afterwards?

Well, the best way to do that is by reducing the portion size of your intake. That way you’ll be satisfied but also be able to take fast, fried food out of your life eventually.

The One-Week Muscle Gain Diet Plan

Have you already made notes to kickstart the new week with a healthy diet plan? We have jotted down a one-week muscle gain diet for you. It is a great way to eat the foods listed above. Have a look!

Start with a sunny-side-up with mushrooms or spinach on the side for breakfast.
Have brown rice and a chicken breast for lunch.
Including a few berries and bananas when you’re craving some snacks is probably a good idea.
Finish the day with “breakfast for dinner” by having a bowl of oatmeal, greek yoghurt and some more fruits.

Go for a chickpea chat with chopped onions and tomato, freshly squeezed lemon juice and some salt to start the day.
For lunch, have tuna and sweet potatoes.
Quench your evening cravings with a glass of low-fat milk and some almonds.
And for dinner, have salmon, quinoa and spinach.

Breakfast is the most important part of the day. So do it right with hard-boiled eggs and roasted potatoes.
Have a hefty bowl of palak paneer with some chapatis for lunch.
Include a protein shake and mixed berries for a quick snack.
And end the day with brown rice and a green salad for dinner.

Bell peppers, tofu, boiled egg and corn. Sounds great for breakfast right?
For lunch, have turkey breast with a side of broccoli and basmati rice.
Snack up on a cup of greek yoghurt and some fruits whenever you feel the need for a stock up.
For dinner, have a stir fry with chicken, black beans, peas, carrots and mushrooms.


Get in the mood for the weekend and start with your breakfast. Here’s a recipe for you to try out.

Banana Pancakes!

With only three ingredients, master a healthy breakfast. These pancakes are made with eggs, almond butter, and bananas. You'll get protein from the eggs and almond butter, plus some good fat to give you energy.

  • In a medium bowl, mash a banana with the almond butter (¼ of a cup) until smooth. Using a fork, whisk the eggs.
  • Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat.
  • Pour spoonfuls of batter on the pan and cook until the bubbles on the sides start to burst. It should take about 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Flip the pancakes and cook for 1 more minute making sure that both sides have that nice golden brown colour.
  • Drizzle a little honey on top if you want some sweetness.

Keep it simple for the rest of the day and have a salad for lunch, an apple in the evening and quinoa for dinner.

Keep the breakfast Instagramable with eggs sunny-side up and avocado toast.
For lunch, go for a bowl of lentils and unbuttered chapatis.
When you’re in a bulking phase, your food intake will be much higher than when you’re in a cutting phase. So don’t forget your evening glass of milk (just like childhood)!
Cheat a bit and go for the pasta of your choice (remember, less portion size of that) with a side of greens.

Go for strawberries and a bowl of overnight oats for an easy-peasy breakfast.
Cook soybean nuggets with the veggies of your choice and have it as a roll.
When you’re in a mood for evening snacks, have your staple protein shake and almond butter.
Go for a simple portion of brown rice and some stir-fried veggies to complete the best diet for muscle gain.


Manage your diet creatively to keep yourself satiated but also healthy and it’ll help you gain muscle faster. Decathlon strives hard and believes that a fit and healthy person starts with a well-planned diet. It provides people across the world by developing good quality, innovative and affordably priced sportswear and sports equipment products.

Related tags :