If you’ve recently started a weightlifting program and are trying to increase your calories in order to build muscle, you may be wondering about liquid meals. These meals, better known as protein powders, are helpful supplements when trying to increase your calories. But are they really necessary?
You may assume that you can simply drink protein shakes and build muscle, but there are at least a couple of reasons that you should get most of your calories from whole foods.
Am I saying you should never use protein powders? No, of course not. There will be times when it is difficult to reach your calorie target for the day, and isn’t always convenient to prepare an extra meal. However, these shakes do not represent an adequate replacement for a solid and healthy meal plan.
Your body needs to be in tiptop shape, and you need to treat it like a high performance car by giving it the best fuel possible to remain in an anabolic state. Besides, drinking shakes all day without enough variety of nutrients (and often with lots of sugar) is not good for overall health regardless of its effect on muscle.
Another reason why you don’t want to depend completely on these liquid meals is because you’re going to get tired of eating the same thing over and over again. The taste is usually a bigger motivation than health for most people, and these protein shakes are going to get boring after a while!
Most of your diet should be coming from quality whole foods, not just from protein shakes.
Always remember these weightlifting supplements are meant to help you achieve your goals but are not absolutely necessary. If you’re short on cash, do yourself a favor and focus on your training regimen and keeping a good diet. You simply don’t have to go out and spend a bunch of money on the latest supplements.
Even protein powders, which are relatively helpful supplements, are not absolutely necessary. While they’re helpful when it’s difficult to consume adequate calories or protein, a bunch of powder with artificial ingredients thrown in is not a substitute for a solid, healthy meal plan.