The 7 Best Natural Sources Of Protein For Building Muscle
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The 7 Best Natural Sources Of Protein For Building Muscle

The 7 Best Natural Sources Of Protein For Building Muscle

Every experienced weight lifter understands the importance of eating a diet high in protein.

It is an important compound that helps the body build and repair muscles.

Without sufficient protein, your workouts will be ineffective as your body will be incapable of repairing and strengthening muscle fibres.

Fortunately, protein is easy to find!

Many different types of foods are high quality sources of protein, including milk, tuna, and nuts.

This article will explain why protein is so important before sharing some protein-rich foods that will help you reach your fitness goals.

What is protein?

Protein is an important part of every cell in the human body.

It is a class of organic compounds that are made from long chains of amino acids.

Protein is used for many purposes in the human body including:

• Building and repairing bones, cartilage, skin, blood, and muscle
• Growing hair and nails
• Making enzymes, hormones and other natural chemicals

Most of the protein used by our bodies is obtained from the food we eat.

The protein in food is a macronutrient, which means the human body needs a lot of it each day.

Other macronutrients include carbohydrates and fats.

Vitamins and minerals are considered micronutrients.

While the body will store fats and carbohydrates, it does not store protein.

That means you will need to regularly consume protein throughout the day to ensure your muscles have the sustenance they require.

This is a crucial point to remember if you are increasing your protein intake!

You may be surprised to discover that the body doesn’t require huge amounts of protein to gain muscle.

An adult male who doesn’t perform much exercise requires about 0.8 grams of protein per kilogram of body mass each day.

This is enough to maintain muscle mass and remain healthy.

Athletes and people who are trying to build muscle require about double that — somewhere between 1.2 to 1.7 grams of protein per kilogram of body mass each day.

If you weight 80 kilograms, consuming 120 grams of protein per day should be easily enough to gain muscle mass.

The only people who require more protein are bodybuilders who are training intensively and bulking up for competitions.

They usually consume about 2 to 2.5 grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight.

Of course, they are also lifting a lot of weights each day which causes significant stress to their muscles.

Most people do not require anywhere near that level of protein and remember — the body cannot store it.

So, consuming 250 grams of protein a day is pointless unless you are working out at an extremely high intensity.

Some bodybuilding blogs suggest you need 3 grams per kilogram or higher, but you may also notice they are selling protein powders on the same page!

The best sources of protein

The foods listed here are excellent sources of protein and quite nutritious.

They will help you bulk up and remain in good overall health.


If you are an avid bodybuilder or athlete, you probably could have guessed that eggs would be high on the list!

Eggs are very high in nutrients, including protein, vitamins, and minerals.

Most of the protein is found in the egg white, so many people only eat egg whites and discard the yolk (which contains most of the cholesterol and fat).

Egg whites contain vitamin D, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, selenium, zin, iron, and copper.

Some eggs also contain fatty acids, depending on the what the chicken was fed.

The average egg contains about 6.3 grams of protein.

Milk, cheese and yogurt

Dairy foods are an excellent source of protein, calcium, magnesium, folate, and many vitamins.

If you are concerned about the saturated fat in dairy foods, opt for low-fat versions.

Most dairy foods contain vitamins B1, B2, B6, B12, A, D, and E.

You will find about 7 grams of protein in a slice (28 grams) of cheese.

A small tub of yoghurt contains about 17 grams of protein.

A cup of milk contains about 8 grams of protein.


Skinless chicken is also a valuable source of protein.

A single skinless drumstick contains around 28 grams of protein.

It is also an excellent source of calcium, vitamin B6, magnesium, and Iron.

Salmon and tuna

Salmon contains about 20 grams of protein in a 100 gram serving, while Tuna comes in at around 25 grams per 100 gram serving.

Both of these fish are excellent sources of vitamins, minerals and Omega-3 fatty acids.

You will find both fish loaded with vitamin A, Vitamin B, Phosphorus, and Magnesium.

Lean beef

Beef has gotten a bad rap in recent years because it is linked to heart disease.

But a very lean piece of beef only has 1 gram more fat than a skinless chicken breast!

You just need to be picky about which cuts you eat.

“Lean” beef refers to any cut that has less than 4.5 grams of saturated fat per 100 grams of meat.

Most supermarkets will tell you which cuts are lean.

An 85 gram piece of lean beef contains about 22 grams of protein, which is quite high! It is also high in vitamin B6 and Iron.


If you are a vegetarian or attempting to reduce the amount of fat in your diet, use some soy products in your diet.

The soybean has about 68 grams of protein in 1 cup (186 grams), which is very high.

You can add cooked soybeans to your salads and soups, add soybean curd to meals, or try some tofu.


Snacking on nuts can seriously boost your protein intake!

There is about 38 grams of protein in a cup of peanuts (146 grams).

The downside is that some nuts contain a lot of saturated fat.

If you are looking for the healthiest nut, try Almonds.

There is about 20 grams of protein in per 100 grams of almonds.

But almonds also contain very high levels of calcium, vitamin E, iron, and magnesium.

Thanks for reading The 7 Best Natural Sources of Protein For Building Muscle!

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Stephen Coleclough
Stephen Coleclough

Stephen Coleclough is a personal trainer and online fitness/nutrition coach from the UK. He loves heavy squats, smashing PRs and bacon sandwiches. You can follow him on Twitter at ColecloughPT.

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