The benefits of having a healthy amount of lean body mass (aka muscle) extend far beyond making you look better in a form-fitting shirt. It boosts metabolic rate, lowers injury risk, and serves as the largest site of blood sugar (glucose) disposal thereby making it a critical organ for better metabolic health. And the more muscle mass you have on your frame the less likely it is that your testosterone levels will take a nosedive as you get older.
But all the time in the gym won’t get you very far unless you’re consuming the necessary muscle-building material. Proper nutrition plays a key role here. It is now well established that muscle building can be augmented by adhering to a diet that provides sufficient amounts of protein, even if most of that protein hails from plants. Really, the key is just to make sure you get enough in your diet, from animals, plants, or a combo.
And you’ve likely noticed that plant-based proteins are skyrocketing in popularity as demand surges. More people, including many muscle men, are gnawing on extra amounts of plants for health and environmental reasons. The benefits of plant-based proteins can be numerous: they are high in fiber, contain important vitamins and minerals, and provide antioxidants like phenolic acids which may help reduce the risk of several chronic diseases. But not all plant-based foods are created equal when it comes to delivering useful amounts of muscle-building protein. Some make it much easier to nail your daily needs for the macro, while others come up short.
Even if you aren’t slicing meat away from your diet, these plant-based proteins shouldn’t be overlooked as a way to support your muscle-making and health-boosting endeavors.