Minerals and vitamins for muscle growth are essential. They can add or break your gym workout efforts.
But, if you clearly watch what do you eat after your gym workout then that can add a real value to all your efforts.
There are a couple of things you should know when trying to encourage muscle growth.
If it doesn't have the correct amount of the right proteins to fix the muscle tears it won't be able to build or retain the muscle you earned at the gym.
Having a balanced diet that contains the right vitamins and minerals can push you over the edge when trying to build or maintain muscle mass.
Here are 13 minerals and vitamins for muscle growth you must know.
1. Protein, essential for whole body health
Protein is essential for muscle growth because of its ability to help encourage your physical performance. It also helps with muscle cell recovery after rigorous training sessions.
According to PubMed, the best way to maximize muscle growth is to consume at lease 1.2-2.0 grams/kg of body weight of protein daily. Note, that this is actually a lot higher than what was normally recommended today(0.8 grams/kg).(2)
In one study, scientists found that protein supplements did increase strength and improved the performance of their test subjects.
Another study conducted by the department of health and exercise science found that using protein supplements amplified weight training performance and expedited muscle recovery.(3)
2. Riboflavin, a vitamin to gain good muscle health
Riboflavin is a B vitamin that is necessary for cell growth due to its ability to boost energy levels, athletic performance. It helps with the development of muscles and relieves soreness.
Riboflavin is good to incorporate into your diet especially after your workout. The recommended dietary allowance for riboflavin is 1.1-1.3(mg) per day for adults. And it is 1.4-1.6 mg for pregnant and breastfeeding women.(4)(5)
Some food that has riboflavin are milk, wheat, eggs, boiled spinach, and almonds.
3. Zinc, an essential mineral for stronger muscles
Zinc is an essential mineral which is used to help encourage muscle growth and cell replication. It has been reported to have many benefits when trying to amplify the effects of resistance training.
Studies have shown that it improves the regulation of the immune system and increases testosterone. Testosterone is a key component when trying to increase muscle mass.
The recommended dietary allowance for zinc is between 9-13 (mg) daily.(6)
4. Pantothenic acid, a muscle building vitamin
Pantothenic acid is also known as vitamin B5 is used to help our body regulate the use of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates.(7)
It is essential for growth and helps your body naturally produce testosterone which helps with muscle growth. The recommended daily intake is about 5 mg a day.
You can find it in many vegetables, legumes, and milk.
5. Vitamin D, good for skin as well as muscle health
Vitamin D primarily encourages cell growth and reduces inflammation. It is produced by the sun and is absorbed by your skin. However, there are a few foods that naturally contain vitamin D.
Fish such as tuna, or salmon are the best sources, but it can also be found in cheese or beef liver. The recommended amount is 600 (IU) daily for adults aged 14+ years.(8)
6. Folate, an essential vitamin for muscle growth
Folate, also known as folic acid, is mostly used with a combination of other B vitamins. However, it has been reported to help with muscle pain.
After you exercise, it is recommended that you take folate to help reduce soreness. It can help increase your exercise performance by decreasing the stress it has on your body because of muscle growth.
The adequate intake for folate is 400 (mcg) a day.(9)
7. Vitamin B-12, a vitamin for good muscle health
Vitamin B12 is used to help regulate red cell formation, promote athletic performance, and boost endurance.
The recommended intake for B12 is 2.4 (mcg) for the average adult.(10)
Some studies claim that vitamin B12 also helps relieve fatigue and weakness. Therefore you should use B12 before or after your workout. However, B12 must be utilized with a balanced diet to see results.
8. Vitamin B-6, one of the best vitamins for muscle growth
Vitamin B6 is used to promote protein and amino acid metabolism. This means it helps cells with muscle development. When exercising, B6 can help your body naturally repair itself by encouraging your cells to replicate more efficiently.This includes increasing the strength of your muscle cells.
The daily intake of vitamin B6 should be about 1.2-1.3 (mg) if you're 14-50 years old.(11)
You can find B6 in potatoes, fish, beef liver or starch filled vegetables.
9. Omega 3 fatty acids, important for muscle gain and heart health
Omega 3 is used to help promote heart and blood vessel function. It helps reduce cholesterol by lowering the amount of triglycerides in your blood. This reduces your risk of a heart attack or other heart-related problems.
According to the FDA, the daily recommended dose of Omega 3 is 2-3 grams per day. You can find Omega 3 in fish and nuts.(12)
10. Choline, one of the essential nutrients for building muscles
Choline is used to retain the functionality of the cell membranes in muscle. Without it, the cells will not be able to maintain a strong structural integrity. This problem could inhibit muscle growth and cause you to lose already existing muscle.
The recommended daily intake for choline is 400-425(mg) for women (age 14+years) and 525 (mg) for men (age 14+years).(13)
It can be found in chicken, salmon, eggs, and turkey.
11. Calcium, a mineral that provides strength to muscles
Calcium has always been the most important mineral for the body because it helps build healthy bones.
However, it also helps your skeletal muscles stretch and contract. This helps you when you are working out.
Without calcium, your skeletal muscles would not allow you to be able to run or lift at the gym. Therefore, taking care of your skeletal muscles is vital when trying to build muscle mass.
The recommended daily intake for adults is about:(14)
1,300 (mg) a day for men (14-18 years of age)
1000 mg/day for men (19-70 years of age)
1200 mg/day for men (71+years old)
1,300 (mg) for women. (14-18 years of age)
1000 mg/day for women (19-50 years of age)
1200 mg/day for women (51-70 years old)
12. Iron, a mineral that helps build muscles
Iron is an essential mineral that participates in the transport of oxygen to muscle. Without iron, the muscle would have a hard time being able to move or operate.
Iron boosts your energy and helps you complete your daily activities or workouts.(15)
13. Fiber, a nutrient that helps lose weight and build muscle
The recommendation of fiber intake for adults is about 21-38 grams per day.
Some foods rich in fiber include fruits, vegetables, cereals, and nuts.
As you can probably deduce, if you can incorporate all of these vitamins and minerals into your diet it can create a large impact on your muscle growth.
You will have more energy for your workout regimen and be able to push yourself even further. Not only will this aid you in creating strong muscles it will also allow you to retain it.
If you monitor your vitamin and mineral intake, you will be surprised at the positive impact it has on your workout or athletic performance.