Muscle gain and a vegetarian diet are not mutually exclusive – that’s a common misconception! Scientific evidence shows that plant-based proteins are enough to allow for an impressive amount of muscle growth in most people (Burke et al., 2003). In fact, a vegetarian diet for weight training offers better sleep, delivers more energy, and improves your quality of life – especially when you incorporate acupuncture treatment into your program.
A well-planned vegetarian diet that contain necessary plant-based proteins and meets your energy needs can help you achieve your bodybuilding objectives. Take the example of Mac Danzig (Ultimate Fighting Champion), Brendan Brazier (triathlete), Serena Williams, and Bill Pearl (four-time Mr Universe). All these individuals have two things in common; they have achieved supreme muscular development and they are vegetarians.
A Study on Vegetarian Weight Training
In a study published in Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, a team of researchers from St. Francis Xavier University’s Human Kinetics Department sought to determine the efficacy of a vegetarian diet in weight training. In particular, they compared the change in exercise performance, hydration status, body composition, fibre morphology, and muscle creatine between nonvegetarians and vegetarians.
The sample parameters included 42 adult participants (24 nonvegetarians and 18 vegetarians) between 19 and 55 years. These respondents were divided into four groups based on their diet and intake of creatine monohydrate (post-workout supplement). The groups include:
1. Nonvegetarian and creatine
2. Vegetarian and creatine
3. Nonvegetarian and no creatine
4. Vegetarian and no creatine
After 8 weeks of following the exact same resistance training program, all 42 respondents in the 4 groups had gained 2-5 pounds of lean mass, as expected of a resistance training program. The vegetarian + creatine group even gained more muscle weight than the nonvegetarian + creatine group. This research shows that it is possible to gain an impressive amount of muscle mass on a plant-based diet. Vegetable, fruits, legumes, and similar food sources have all the protein and nutrients you need.
Explore Acupuncture to Boost your Muscle Gain Outcome
While you embark on your vegetarian weight training program, we recommend the exploration of acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine to enhance your experience. Here’s why:
• Shortens the recovery time by stimulating the body’s natural healing mechanisms.
• Enhances endurance and energy.
• Prevents injury by creating a cardiovascular and neurological balance (to prevent pulled muscles).
• Improves blood flow and circulation of energy throughout your body.
• Decreases joint and muscle pain/fatigue (Cupping eliminates metabolic waste responsible for muscle fatigue).
As you plan your exercise program, incorporate vegetables, legumes, fruits, seeds and nuts into your training diet – it’s the healthier option and it works. But remember, it requires conscious effort, careful planning, and discipline. Centre of Balance Hamilton is dedicated to improving your quality of life. We offer relevant advice to help you make the most of your weight training program through a vegetarian diet and acupuncture treatment.
Fill in our online questionnaire for free – and save the $135 it would cost you to do this detailed medical history in person with a practitioner. You can request a phone call from a practitioner after they have read your online form, or just book your Initial Exam now. Call us on 07 846 7956 to book, or fill in the questionnaire now.
Burke, D. G., Chilibeck, P. D., Parise, G. I. A. N. N. I., Candow, D. G., Mahoney, D., & Tarnopolsky, M. (2003). Effect of creatine and weight training on muscle creatine and performance in vegetarians. Medicine and science in sports and exercise, 35(11), 1946-1955.