4 Secret Muscle Foods
Nutrition is so important to achieving your goals and maintaining well being. For my first post I’ve picked four muscle foods that are being over looked. Some, like sardines, are familiar while others, like cococeps, less so but all four are worth looking at to boost muscle and your immune system as we head into the autumn.
Ok, let’s start with the familiar and a bit of a story. When I was a kid my mate was mad keen on body building. A guy at the gym told him he needed to eat different because he was training so he used to sneak off home for lunch everyday. Being curious about training and nutrition I tagged along with him one day keen to find out what this muscle building secret was. I cant say I wasn’t disappointed to find him grilling some smelly sardines to have on toast…what sort of a secret was that!
Later in life I learned some facts about his fishy wisdom. Sardines contain good protein, massive levels of omega 3, bio available calcium and decent levels of vitamin D too – all in a little power house of protein packed goodness. Just don’t eat them in a crowded office….
As you’d expect, the first milk from a mother to baby contains some excellent nutritional elements. Most importantly, the baby gets it’s first immune protection from this milk. Recent studies have found presence of the mother’s colostrum in grown adult intestines. But, before you think I’m going to recommend an ‘alternative’ milk source, high levels of immune and growth factors are now proven to transfer the same properties into adults when they consume cow colostrum.
Following the recent outbreak of swine and bird flu, China virtually bought up the entire world’s stock of colostrum. When you look at the sheer weight of references and information available to support colostrum’s use for immune function you’d be mad not to have some in your cupboard to keep yourself and your family well.
To bring it back to the theme of this post which is about muscle building colostrum has the added benefit of providing a few more pounds of muscle if you use it regularly as part of a muscle building diet programme.
A couple of tips though, if using a larger dose of 20-60g daily for a proper anabolic boost buy low lactose as lactose intolerance is quite common these days. Plus you don’t want to pay for the additional sugars in lactose. If it’s just for a small immune boost even a teaspoon dissolved in the mouth can add valuable immune support post training when the immune system is suppressed and you’re more likely to pick up a bug.
You won’t find this ingredient in your supermarket but you can get colostrum in powder form and I recommend neovite
Most people think they are what they eat but you are what you digest and absorb! Frequently neglected and pandemically deficient – healthy bowel flora will do more than just unregulated your immune function. These little critters manufacture energy, B vitamins and help with neurotransmitter development – you literally will feel and behave better with the right balance of microflora. More than that they help with inflammation in the gut and keeping cholesterol in balance.
Tip for these though is you need a lot to do any good – I normally use a 25 billion active tablet and take 4-6 every day for 2 weeks periodically. They get destroyed through long haul flights, stress, stomach bugs and diarrhoea – each time this happens top them up with a decent supplement.
Cocoa and Cordeceps
The benefits of raw natural cocoa are truly startling but not all cocoa powder is created equal. Cococeps combines is raw organic cocoa and a decent serving of a special natural fungus from Tibet which has been shown to increase immune function and testosterone release. I’ve yet to run my Testosterone levels pre and post the drink – but I’m convinced this lower your voice an octave or two – one way to measure if a supplement is doing anything to your testosterone.
Plus shockingly, it tastes good too! Mixing a teaspoon of glycine in there adds sweetness and an amino which assists liver detox and collagen formation – not bad for an afternoon hot choccy.
You can purchase this wonder cocoa from iherb.com
Matt Lovell BA (Hons) Dip ION NTCC CNHC Reisterd mBANT is an elite sports nutritionist and the director of Perform and Function. He also shares insights on his Sports Nutrition Vlog