Fitness & Exercise

How to Build Muscles on a Plant-Based Diet – 9 Tips

How to build muscles on a plant based diet
Written by Collins Nwokolo

It is not true that, if you aspire to compete as a sportsperson, build muscle, or strength, you need to eat lots of meat? Building muscles is hard, regardless of the type of diet you follow. Adapting a plant-based diet might be a challenging affair, particularly if a person is new to the vegetarian lifestyle.
How we build muscle

Having an understanding of how you build muscle helps you realize that animal-based products are not the only way to build muscle. Muscle size increases under these conditions:
You fuel growth by continually engaging in resistance exercise that applies stress on your muscle fibers; thus, producing micro-tears.

You ought to consume sufficient calories to encourage muscle growth and repair, and a small proportion of calories should have amino acids. They help you recover from training and help repair and grow damaged muscle tissues.

Wondering how you can build muscles on a plant-based diet? The 9 tips below will help you:

How to Build Muscles on a Plant-Based Diet – 9 Tips

How to build muscles on a plant based diet

1. Understand your calorie needs

While seeking to build muscles on a veggie-based diet, it is vital to understand your exact calorie needs. Avoid assuming, guessing, or estimating traits about your present routines, but ensure to get actual, raw data as per who you are and the things you do.

Start this process by finding your BMR (basal metabolic rate), which is the quantity of calories you use for existing, and it depends on your weight, height, age, and gender. Add BMR number with the actual activity level. And by actual activity, we mean supplementary movements like running errands, hitting the gym, or walking the dog. The addition gives you an approximate amount of calories you use each day.

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Therefore, if the number is 2,500 in a day, then you should eat 2,500 calories daily to maintain your weight. For gaining muscle, you ought to consume more than 2,500 calories, particularly from real plant foods. It is prudent to combine this with resistance weight training.


2. Join an effective exercise program

Gaining muscle is not all about eating but also effective exercise. Although there are many lifting routines, ensure to follow these fundamental principles:

  • Dumbbell and barbell free weight workouts should be the foundation of the exercise program.
  • Participate in workouts that you enjoy.
  • Create an exercise program that aims at all main muscle groups like abs, arms, legs, back, chest, and shoulders. It ensures that you encourage growth throughout the entire body than concentrating on biceps and abs. For example, rowing is a great exercise. You should get the best rowing machines.
  • Be consistent.
  • Set achievable fitness goals.
  • Document your exercises to motivate you and achieve your goals.


3. Set objectives and goals and track your advancement

Actionable goals, together with attainable objectives, help you build muscle faster. You can set to add10 pounds of the total mass in the next 5 months, add 3 pounds of mass in a month, 5 days a week for resistance weight training.

With your set targets, remember to include a nutritional plan to help support your goals. It ensures that you meet your calorie needs and other nutritional requirements.


4. Educate yourself

It is vital for you to know the right sources of vegetarian protein, which include seeds, nuts, grains, beans, vegetables, tofu, and pulses, among others. Having several sources of protein in your snacks and meals will help you achieve your protein goal in a day.
Remember that the amount of protein you need in your diet varies depending on your exercise routine and body composition. According to Lalonde, a person needs 0.36 grams of protein for each pound that he weighs and when he is active, the body will require double the quantity to repair and grow new muscle tissue. “Though the ideal range is between 0.5 grams to 0.72 grams of protein for each pound you weigh, bodybuilders optimal range is 0.8g to 1.2 grams for each pound”, he added.

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5. Feed your workout

Your muscles need enough nutrients after training. Therefore, make sure that you consume well-balanced meals with a high quantity of quality proteins, ideally from whole food sources. Smoothie can also supply the needed macronutrients, which help with muscle recovery.


6. Drink a protein shake instead of water

You can add a spoonful of your protein powder to water, shake and drink it when having your meals. It is a great way to add extra grams of protein.

7. Use nuts and seeds rather than oils

Seeds and nuts have protein, but oils don’t. Why not take advantage of this! You can have lentils with pumpkin seeds instead of cooking lentils using oils. A quarter cup of pumpkin seeds produces 15g of protein. A quarter cup of almonds produces 10g of protein; thus, have a salad with almonds rather than a salad with oils.

8. Eat

Gaining muscles requires you to eat more and make sure that you consume a calorie surplus diet instead of a calorie deficit diet. Therefore, increase your portion sizes and eat whole, nutritious foods to ensure that your body is at optimal health as well as build lean muscle mass.

9. Supplement when necessary

You can take supplements if you can’t get enough protein from food. Several supplements help vegetarians, and they include; vitamin B12, creatine, zinc, taurine, and selenium, among others.


Now that you have the tools to make your muscle-building journey easy, use them to achieve your goals. The tips above can yield results as long as you follow them and be consistent in what you do. It is possible to gain and maintain muscles with a plant-based diet. However, make sure to choose the right type of protein.

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It is critical to note that engaging in consistent resistance training or strength-building workouts also helps you build lean body muscles. As well, consume enough calories to encourage muscle growth and repair. Also, testosterone hormone can help a person build muscles. It is responsible for the production of muscle, sustains muscle gain, and enables you to achieve denser bones.

Testosterone levels vary naturally from one individual to the other. As such, you can increase your testosterone levels with Testosterone Cypionate, an anabolic and androgenic steroid that helps you achieve better strength gains.

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About the author

Collins Nwokolo

Collins Nwokolo is a passionate blogger and an amazing writer. He is a health and fitness enthusiast who loves sharing helpful information to people.

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