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    Lightbulb Nutrition needed to maintain and build muscles

    Nutrition for bodybuilding
    To effectively gain muscle mass or reduce body fat, a person needs to focus on eating the right number of calories.
    They also need to concentrate on their macronutrient consumption and eating strategy, or how many times they eat throughout the day.
    The number of calories a person eats, combined with exercise, affects whether they will gain, lose, or maintain their current weight.
    In order to bulk, bodybuilders should eat more calories than their body needs to maintain weight each day. Conversely, when preparing for a competition, they need to eat fewer calories than they need each day to lose fat while preserving muscle mass.
    According to an older reviewTrusted Source, a bodybuilder should increase their necessary caloric intake by 15% during the off-season or bulk-up periods. To lose fat, they should eat 15% fewer calories than the number they need daily to maintain their weight.
    A person should consult their doctor, certified fitness instructor, or dietitian for professional guidance on how many calories they need to eat daily. They can also try using a reputable online calculatorTrusted Source.
    A person can then tailor their caloric intake based on whether they are in the bulking or leaning phase of their training.
    Macronutrients, or macros, are three general types of nutrients that provide energy to a person. They are:
    • proteins
    • carbohydrates or carbs
    • fats
    A person following a bodybuilding routine should base what they eat on a balance of these three macronutrient groups.
    Various methods can determine how much of each macronutrient a person should consume. Here are a couple of approaches:
    According to an older reviewTrusted Source, a person should eat the following percentages of each macro during both the bulking and leaning phase:
    • 55–60% of calories from carbohydrates
    • 25–30% of calories from protein
    • 15–20% of calories from fat
    A more recent reviewTrusted Source suggests the following distribution of macros:
    • 2.3–3.1 grams per kilogram of lean body mass per day of protein
    • 15–30% of calories from fat
    • remaining calories should come from carbohydrates
    Number of meals per day
    There is still debate about the number of meals a person should eat each day within the bodybuilding community.
    One reviewTrusted Source indicates that a person can consume between three and six meals daily. It states the timing of meals and workouts has no impact on retaining muscle or reducing fat.
    Food list
    A bodybuilder can choose from many different foods when preparing their meal plan across the week. In general, they should focus on foods that provide adequate calories and nutrients.
    During the cutting phase, it is desirable for a bodybuilder to feel fuller on a given amount of calories. However, they may struggle with the opposite problem during the bulking phase. This is because they may need to continue eating to hit high calorie intake goals, despite possibly feeling full.
    Proteins should make up a portion of a bodybuilding diet.
    Sources should include lean proteins, including:
    • eggs
    • lean red meat
    • poultry such as chicken and turkey breasts
    • fish
    • beans and legumes
    • yogurt and low fat dairy products
    • nuts and seeds

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