TOP NUTRITION MISTAKES
By Noelle Walker at New Fitness Personal Training
There are several nutrition mistakes you may be making when trying lose fat or gain muscle. In this blog post I will describe just a few of them.
NOT ENOUGH PROTEIN
When trying to lose fat or build muscle you need enough protein and most people are not getting enough simply because they are skipping so many meals! Every meal is an opportunity to get in the protein that you need and if you’re skipping meals like Breakfast or Lunch then you can forget about getting in any of the protein that you need.
Why is getting enough protein neccessary? For losing fat its very necessary as it is a highly thermogenic food which means it burns off calories and boosts metabolism. It is also more filling and takes the body longer to digest than other foods. This will result in a higher amount of fat loss as well as a quicker one.
For building muscle it is crucial as it contains amino acids which are the building blocks of gaining muscle. They also help with recovery and maintaining the muscle that you have gained.
Dont skip meals and make sure you get enough protein!
NOT ENOUGH CARBOHYDRATES
There have been too many diets in the past years that are low in Carbohydrates. Carbs are very important to both losing fat and gaining muscle. It is the primary fuel source for activities such as lifting weights and performing any type of cardio. Not only is it the primary source of fuel it is also least likely to get stored as fat. The body tends to not recognize it as something to be stored but as something to “use”.
Often times Carbohydrates are not thought of as being a major factor when it comes to building muscle. But it is so important! Carbs replace glycogen lost during workouts and also provides energy for your lifts.
So eat your Carbs! Some good examples are: Pasta, Bread, Granola, Fruits and Vegetables.
NOT ENOUGH WATER
People are not drinking enough water. Period. Drinking water will make you feel full. Sometimes we think we are hungry when in fact we are just thirsty. Water also helps to burn fat. It also gives you the much needed hydration for your workouts.
A good rule of thumb is a litre of water before your workout, one during, and then another litre after your workout. This all depends on your own bodyweight as well so if you are on the small side make it half a litre instead. And if you are bigger, add a half a litre. These are basic guidelines.
There are so many misconceptions and scams when to comes to the topic of supplements. Many supplement companies try to convince you that you need to take all these supplements to either lose fat or gain muscle or both! Some supplements may even be dangerous and lead to serious illness and even death. Those supplements are fat loss aids such as fat burners and appetite suppressants.
Supplements that are targeted to body builders and gym enthusiasts for building muscle are more benign but most of them simply don’t work or your body makes it naturally or you get it from the food you eat so it’s just not needed. A good example are BCAA’s. They are branched chain amino acids and there are three of them. One of them is Leucine which is essential to building muscle. The problem is its useless when you are only taking Leucine. You need all nine essential amino acids when building muscle not just Leucine. In fact your body will try to use up the other 8 essential acids from your muscles to pair it with Leucine and so you’re basically taking away from your muscle not building it up.
Another example is Glutamine for muscle recovery. Glutamine is a non essential amino acid. What does that mean? It means it is made in the body naturally so it is not necessary to supplement with it. It’s basically a cash grab. There used to be data to suggest that we needed to supplement with Glutamine because it was depleted in the muscles post intense workouts but now there are studies to show its completely useless as your body can produce on its own.
These are just a couple of examples of supplements that are not necessary but what are some supplements that would be good to take? Protein is a very good supplement and take the form of protein bars and shakes. Don’t make all your meals bars and shakes but you can certainly replace one meal with them as they are considered food. Another good supplement to take is Creatine. Your body does make Creatine but it may not be enough to help produce the amount of muscle that you would like to see. A basic multivitamin may also be beneficial to you if you are missing some key vitamins and minerals in your diet.
I’ve listed some key nutrition mistakes some of you may be making. So to repeat, make sure you’re drinking enough water, getting enough Carbs in your diet and enough Protein. Also be careful with supplementation as you could be supplementing something for nothing or you may need to start supplementing.