Carbs are very protein sparring and are a necessity to fuel your everyday life but most importantly your workouts. They give you the energy you didn't know existed within your body. Carbohydrates also increase your glycogen stores in your muscle cells. Carbs also stimulate a greater insulin response than any other micronutrient.
Carbohydrates such as starch and sugar are the most readily available resources of food energy. During digestion and metabolism, all carbohydrates are broken down to a simple sugar called glucose for use as the body's principal energy source. Glucose is stored in the liver and muscle tissue as glycogen. A carbohydrate-rich diet is necessary to maintain muscle glycogen, the preferred fuel for most types of exercise.
Although the body uses both the sugars and starches for energy, a high-performance diet emphasizes complex carbohydrates. Foods high in complex carbohydrates, such as bread, cereal, rice, beans, pasta, and vegetables also supply other nutrients such as vitamins, minerals, and fibers.
Some sweet foods that are high in sugar supply carbohydrates but also contain a high amount of fat and only insignificant amounts of vitamins and minerals. Fruit contains the sweetest of all simple sugars - fructose. Since fruit is mostly water, its sugar and calorie content are relatively low.
Protein is a major structural component of all body tissues and is required for all tissue growth and repair. Protein is not a significant energy source during rest or exercise. However, the body will use protein for energy when calorie or carbohydrate intake is small. The proteins in both plant and animal sources are composed of the same basic units called amino acids.
Meat, fish, and poultry and eggs contain all nine essential amino acids and are called complete proteins. Vegetable proteins, such as beans and grains, are called incomplete proteins because they do not supply all of the essential amino acids.
Our bodies cannot naturally consume enough protein in our diet daily so some people get the proper amount in protein bars or shakes. A good rule of thumb is 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight.
Fats And Oils
Fats are the bodies' only source for skin growth and maintenance. Fat protects the bodies' organs and helps to insulate us keeping our bodies at safe temperatures. Fats are the source of fatty acids, which are divided into two categories: saturated and unsaturated. As a good rule of thumb, saturated fat is solid at room temperature and is derived mainly from animal sources.
Unsaturated fat is liquid at room temperature and is found mainly in plants. Here are some good sources of quality fats. Olive oil, flax seed oil, cottage cheese, peanut oil, and many salad dressings.
Water is the best way to supplement a diet. It's mother nature's ultimate supplement and without it you will go nowhere. It gives you proper regulation of food, vitamins, and minerals. It also helps you get the most out of your protein and carbs, by helping your body absorb it.
It is involved in every function of the body Including transporting nutrients, and waste products, helping with the digestive, absorptive, circulatory, and excretory functions, as well as utilization of the WATER soluble vitamins. It is also used to maintain proper body temperature. Water makes up about 70 % of our body mass and a good rule of thumb is to drink at least a gallon of water per day.
Vitamins And Minerals
Vitamins and minerals are generally considered to be the most important aspect of maintaining optimal health. Vitamins are substances, which are totally organic and considered to be essential, in small amounts, to sustain life. They must be obtained from food for they are generally not made within the body in amounts high enough to sustain growth and vitality.
When a particular vitamin is deficient, the result can be any number of health problems from hampered metabolism to a deficiency related disease. Vitamins play a role in the function of nearly every organ and combine with other substances to produce certain necessary chemical reactions. As a good rule of thumb, you should take at least one multi- vitamin per day to increase health.
The amount of sleep each person needs depends on many factors. Infants usually require 16 hours of sleep where as an adult or teenager requires 7 to 10 hours of sleep each day. In our sleep our body starts to repair itself from the breakdown of muscle tissues and fibers. Without the proper rest our bodies cannot recuperate or grow.
Eat, Eat And Eat Some More!
Don't be afraid to eat. Remember you need all those calories and nutrients that I have mentioned throughout this article. Just make sure you do not over eat. If this happens those extra calories will turn into unwanted fat. Most bodybuilders eat 6 to 8 meals per day usually every 2 to 2 and a half hours apart. This gives them proper nutrition and regulates their bodies.
Most bodybuilders eat as much as 2000 to 6000 calories a day depending on your body type and genetics. You can also try using supplements such as weight gain drinks or bars or protein shakes or carb drinks. These help to make sure you do get the proper nutrition your body needs but should not be a substitute for eating.
Here is a list of supplements that I have tried that I have found worked for me. But don't forget everyone is different and has different genetics.
Eat, Eat and Eat!