Healthy Living in Connecticut Blog

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Muscle Building Foods

Before going plant based last year, I always worried about protein. How would I get enough protein to build muscle. Oddly enough, I was not building muscle as efficiently as I am now being plant based.

One thing I've learned is that if you're eating enough food, you'll have more than enough protein. There are so many bodybuilders at the gym I go to that just do not understand this concept. Protein powders are not necessary to build muscle.


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Plant Based For A Year... Here Are Some Things I've Learned

It's exactly one year since I went completely plant based (well to be precise, September 6th). After losing 150 pounds almost 5 years ago, I didn't need to lose more weight. I had what many considered to be a healthy diet. I was eating poultry, eggs and dairy a few times a week and did get my blood pressure down and avoid medication. But I had other goals...

It's always been about health, back when I first lost weight. I ate lots of fruits and vegetables based on different articles I've read and from reading books by Dr. Fuhrman and others. I was getting more information on how animal products were not healthy. But this wasn't enough to convert me to a plant based diet. I tried vegan diets a week or two on and off for a couple years but always went back to animal products.


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Plant Based for Almost a Year!

Almost 11 months ago, I went plant based, just as a challenge. The last time I ate poultry was September 6th. I never imagined that I would stay with this eating plan but discovered how awesome it felt to eat this way. I have a lot of energy and my muscle continues to grow. I can't think of the last time I had a cold either.

Growing up, I never went a day without eating something from an animal, whether it be dairy, meat or eggs. Every day I would consume either eggs, cheese, steak, chicken or any combination of these foods. I ate very few vegetables and not enough fruit.


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Building Muscle Has Health Benefits!

As a bodybuilder, I made a decision to not overload my body with extra protein. Every single American unless they are starving has more than enough protein. I didn't want to build muscle if it meant compromising my kidneys or liver with excess protein. This is part of the reason why I went plant based... the protein in plants won't raise my IGF-1 levels, or insulin-like growth factor 1, which increases one's risk for cancer and other diseases.

The vegan bodybuilders like Robert Cheese, Will Tucker and countless others really inspire me and show me what's possible without meat. I'm on a mission trying to prove to my whey protein powder friends at the gym that there's a much healthier way to build muscle.



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The Shred It! Challenge Works! The Results Are In!

I began the "Shred It!" challenge with a lot of confusion. I did vegan challenges before where I would give up animal products for weeks at a time. I never imagined I would go this long without any turkey or eggs and feel good in the process. All I have to say is that the challenge works!

I may not have perfect muscle definition yet, but I'm closer than I ever was. Yes, 13 weeks might be enough for some people, but for me it will take a while longer. However, I can feel the muscle growth, especially in my arms and chest. A lot of the loose skin I had there is now covered with muscle. There is still some loose skin left on the arms, but I know I'm on the right track.



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