A 28-year-old man submitted an average day of eating to be reviewed for Insider's Nutrition Clinic.
He told Insider his goal is to build muscle, so he drinks a lot of protein shakes.
A dietitian said to aim to get protein from whole foods, and eat more carbs, fats, fruit, and vegetables.
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The advice in this article isn't a substitute for a professional medical diagnosis or treatment.
Trevor, 28, submitted his eating routine to Insider's Nutrition Clinic, where qualified dietitians and nutritionists offer advice on readers' eating habits.
He told Insider his goal is to build muscle and that he's 6-foot and weighs 220 pounds.
Trevor said he works six days a week as a mail carrier, goes for a 30-minute run every morning, and lifts weights for 45 to 90 minutes after work, training with hypertrophy (muscle-building) in mind.
Protein is important for muscle-building. But Trevor consumes up to 273 grams a day, which is more than he needs and comes at the expense of other nutrients, registered sports dietitian Jessica Spendlove told Insider.
She recommended aiming for two grams of protein per kilogram of body mass (or 0.9 grams per pound) each day, which would mean 200 grams of protein for Trevor.
Not only would reducing protein and adding more carbs, fats, fruit, and vegetables into his diet improve Trevor's health, he'd likely get better results too, she said.
Trevor has four protein shakes a day
Trevor wakes up at 6 a.m., goes for a run or walk, and afterwards drinks a large protein shake containing about 50 grams of protein, he said.
He goes to work at 8 a.m., and a couple of hours later has another protein shake, providing 40 grams protein.
Around 1 p.m., Trevor has another protein shake and a protein bar, providing 46 grams of protein.
Before bed, Trevor has a final protein shake with skim milk, giving him another 35 grams of protein.
Spreading protein intake out over the course of the day will help Trevor build muscle, Spendlove said, but she's concerned that most of his intake comes from protein powder.
Spendlove doesn't recommend consuming more than two protein shakes a day as they often contain additives and it's also important to ensure they're from companies that conduct third-party batch testing, as some protein supplements have been found to contain heavy metal toxicity.
Trevor has his first meal at 4 pm
At 4 p.m., Trevor has his first meal of the day: a high-fiber tortilla with four eggs and 1.5 ounces of chicken fajita meat, containing about 42 grams of protein.
Nutritionally, the two most important factors to consider for muscle-building are eating enough protein over the day and being in a calorie surplus, Spendlove said.
Trevor doesn't need to eat more protein, so if he's not making progress it could be because he's not consuming enough overall, she said.
Spendlove recommended tracking bodyweight, aiming to gain no more than one pound per week, and adjusting food intake accordingly.
"Don't only focus on protein, you also need to look at the overall composition of nutritional intake like carbohydrates, healthy fats, and colors (micronutrients)," Spendlove said.
Trevor's diet lacks foods like wholegrain carbohydrates, fruits, and vegetables, she said.
Trevor mostly eats meat for dinner but should have more carbs
Trevor gets home at 5.30 p.m., heads to the gym, then has a dinner like baked chicken breasts or lean ground beef, with "little to no pasta or rice." He aims to consume 40-60 grams of protein.
Trevor's performance in the gym, and thus his muscle gains, would benefit from more carbs, Spendlove said.
Carbs provide essential nutrients as well as energy. If you eat a low-carb diet, your physical performance can only go so far, sports nutritionist Dr Mike Molloy previously told Insider.
"Ideally, you want to periodize your carbohydrate intake around your sessions to get maximum performance in the session and also support adaptation," Spendlove said. Adaptation is where the muscles grow as a result of training.
By eating carbs before and after training, Trevor might build muscle quicker, she said.
"The process of gaining lean mass is about two parts — the training you're doing for the muscle breakdown, and the nutrition being consumed for the growth," Spendlove said.
If you're not giving your body the nutrients it needs, your muscles can't recover from all the hard work you're doing in the gym. according to Spendlove?
Read the original article on Insider