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Foods to Avoid when Bodybuilding

Foods to Avoid for Bodybuilding

Foods to Avoid when Bodybuilding

Your diet plays a huge role in the success of your bodybuilding journey. You will gain muscle mass if you eat the right kinds of food and meet your caloric daily intake. Fats, carbohydrates, proteins, and calories are the right fuel to give you energy on high-intensity workouts.

You have worked so hard to achieve your body goal. You have spent countless hours at the gym lifting heavy weights. The last thing that you want to do is to compromise all your hard work. Sure, knowing the right types of food for a bodybuilder is important. But so is knowing which foods to avoid when bodybuilding.

Below is the list of foods that you should stay away from.

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1. Soy Protein

Most of us associate bodybuilding with protein. This type of nutrient is important if you want to pack on muscle mass.  So why is soy protein the first on this list?

It may be hard to believe but there is such a thing as “bad” protein. Soy protein is considered to be one of those.

You won’t be able to get up to 10 grams of protein in every 126-gram serving of soy protein. Also, it has said to have an unpleasant effect of suppressing the production of testosterone. Testosterone is an important hormone for the production of muscle growth. Soy protein can hinder a bodybuilder’s goal by limiting the production of testosterone.

Whey and casein protein are the best options to meet your daily protein needs.

2. Fruit Juice

Just from the sound of it, fruit juice seems healthy. I mean, it must have come from fruits, right?

Sorry to burst your bubble but fruit juice is nothing but healthy. Not only that it’s highly concentrated with sugar, but there’s also very little nutritional value to it. Most of the healthy nutrients have been stripped out from fruits during processing.

It no longer contains the full nutrients and fibers that you would get from real fruits. Drinking fruit juices would also put yourself in the risk of taking too many calories.

Making your own juice or shake is the perfect alternative if you’re looking for something refreshing to drink.

3. White Bread

White bread may sound like a healthy choice in the food pyramid. But eating too much white bread is certainly not healthy for bodybuilders. Here are some reasons why:

  • It contains a high amount of carbohydrates per serving.
  • It contains a high amount of fructose corn syrup. It’s a poor sugar additive that is metabolized differently from other sugar.
  • It does not give you a feeling of satiety. When you’re hungry most of the time, you tend to consume more calories and carbohydrates than needed.

4. Flavored Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a healthy breakfast choice for bodybuilders. Aside from the carbs, it also contains a healthy amount of unsaturated fat, protein, and fiber.

Flavored ones are not a healthy choice though. There are already additives included that don’t provide any nutritional value at all. It also contains maltodextrin, sugar, and partially hydrogenated soybean oil. You don’t want to have these added to your diet. They don’t give you the nutrients and vitamins that you need to endure a high-intensity workout. They are just added calories that are better to be avoided than consumed.

Opt for whole-grain oats with zero additives. There are no saturated or unsaturated fats, no sodium, and no sugar added. You get nothing but 100% of pure contents that is effective in keeping you feeling energized and full.

5. Processed Meat

Protein is necessary for bodybuilders to build and preserve muscle mass. While meat is a rich source of protein, you must stay away from processed meat at all costs.

Deli meats such as pastrami, turkey, and ham are full of preserved and chemicals that can be harmful to your health. They also have sugar and water added to improve flavor and to make them bulky. Because of these artificial additives, processed meats contain a lower amount of protein than fresh meats.

Consuming processed meats does not contribute to your muscle-building journey. In addition, it also increases your risk of cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.

To get your daily dose of protein, consume healthy and fresh meats, such as chicken, lamb, beef, and pork.

6. Sugars

Sugar is included in a wide variety of foods. Dairy products, vegetables, and fruits contain naturally occurring sugars. There are also those foods that are packed with sugar. You need to watch out for these types of food. Baked goods, candy, and donuts are some of these examples.

Consuming foods high in sugar will increase your insulin. As a result, you gain more fat. The only time that eating sugar is beneficial to you would be after your workout session. Your muscle is in a carbohydrate-depleted state during this time. A quick fix of fast-acting carbs can increase your glycogen level and helps in muscle recovery. However, it’s still better to choose natural sugar than those that are filled with added sugar.

Choose unrefined sugars that are found in fruits and some vegetables instead. They are rich in water, vitamins, and fiber to keep you feeling full longer and energized all day.

7. Weight Gain Shakes

Many bodybuilders are fond of weight gain shakes. It’s a staple for them to meet their daily caloric needs. Weight gain shakes stands on a thin borderline when it comes to favorable food for bodybuilders.

While it seems to be an easy fix to increase your calorie intake, you should be careful. Weight gain shakes are often packed with artificial sweeteners, additives, and sugar. Instead of a pre-made shake, prepare your own high-calorie smoothie or shake using almond milk, fruit, protein powder, nut butter, and unflavored oats.

8. Foods High in Trans and Saturated Fats

A diet filled with foods high in trans and saturated fats can increase your risk of heart disease.

Fats are an important part of a bodybuilder’s diet. You should choose the “good” fats instead. Avocado, salmon, almond, coconut butter, and virgin olive oil are healthy choices.

Diet and workout come hand in hand when it comes to bodybuilding. You may spend countless hours at the gym but your effort would still be futile if you’re not wise on your food choices. Now that you know what types of foods to avoid in bodybuilding, you can now have smart food choices. Avoid the foods listed above and in due time, you will achieve your body goal.

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Brown, D. (n.d.). Bodybuilding Foods to Avoid. Retrieved from

Corleone, J. (n.d.). List of the Worst Foods for a Bodybuilder. Retrieved from

List of the Worst Foods for a Bodybuilder. (n.d.). Retrieved from

Van De Walle, G. (2018). Bodybuilding Meal Plan: What to Eat, What to Avoid. Retrieved from

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