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We all know that we need a good dose of fiber every day to boost metabolism, improve the digestive process, rid our digestive tracts of waste buildup and reduce inflammation. But with everything else you are paying attention to and keeping track of in your diet, it can be hard to focus on getting more fiber.
The recommended minimum daily requirement of fiber is 25g, but if your digestive system is out of whack, you’ll want to get even more than that.
Getting More Fiber Isn’t as Hard as You Might Think
When most people think of getting more dietary fiber, they think first of eating more grains. That’s a natural mistake, considering all of the hype from bread and cereal manufacturers. The problem with those foods is that they are loaded with carbs, sugar, artificial ingredients, sodium and calories. This can be an issue with anyone, but especially for those who need to watch carbs and/or sugar because you’re trying to lose fat and/or correct insulin sensitivity problems. With the grains approach to fiber, you might think you don’t have any carbs or calories to spend on getting more fiber into your diet.
Trying to get 25g of fiber through grains can add up to a ton of extra carbs and calories. A slice of whole wheat bread contains between 1-3g of fiber, around 60-70 calories and anywhere from 13-20 carbs. I know you’re not going to try to get all 25g of fiber from bread, but imagine if you did, you would be adding at least 600-700 calories a day and a ton of carbs.
The good news is that you can get additional fiber into your diet without taking in a single grain food and sometimes without even taking in one single additional calorie. How does that grab you?
Here are my favorite ways to get more fiber into your diet, without adding more carbs or a bunch of calories:
1. Don’t peel it, eat it.
The vast majority of the indigestible fiber in fruits and vegetables is in their peels or skins. The skin also contains an awful lot of the vitamins and antioxidants, especially with things like apples and red grapes. Whenever you can, focus on vegetables and fruits that you don’t necessarily need to peel in order to eat them. You’ll get a whopping dose of insoluble fiber, which is like dragging a whisk broom through your digestive tract. The best part is you’re not adding any calories by eating the peel because it is indigestible.
One note: As I’ve said before, you want to buy organic as often as possible, but especially if you’re eating the peel or skin of the fruit or vegetable. Pesticides and herbicides are absorbed through the skin, so washing and peeling do not remove all of the toxins.
2. Eat more berries.
Even if you’re on a very strict carb limitation, you can enjoy some low-glycemic fruits. When you do, choose berries. Not only are they low on the glycemic scale, but those tiny seeds in strawberries, raspberries and blackberries are nothing but insoluble fiber. On top of that, you’ll be getting a ton of antioxidants, including Vitamin C, B-vitamins and resveratrol, which boost muscle recovery and your immune system. Berries are also some of the lowest-calorie fruits you can eat. Again, please buy organic berries so you are not getting a hefty dose of toxins that cancel out the good you’re doing.
3. Focus on cruciferous vegetables.
Ounce for ounce, cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, cabbage, bok choy and Brussels sprouts have more fiber than other veggies. They’re also loaded with phytonutrients that you can’t get from grains, are very low in calories and extremely low on the glycemic scale, which is important if you’re cutting carbs or having insulin issues.
You want to eat these with the fibers as intact as possible, so raw is best. If you do need to cook them, steam them, or sauté just enough to tenderize them a bit but still leave them crisp. This leaves it up to your digestive system to do most of the work breaking down the fibers. That means slower absorption of the carbs and fats in your meal as well.
Because of the high fiber content in cruciferous vegetables, plus their generally high volume, you can eat a lot of these veggies for few calories and feel full and satisfied much longer than you would eating something like spinach or salad.
4. Your invisible friend, Psyllium husk
Psyllium husk is nothing but soluble fiber, meaning that it is indigestible, but also expands and turns into a gel-like substance when mixed with liquids (either the liquid they’re in or the liquid in your stomach). This gives you a real sense of fullness without adding a single calorie to your meal.
The great thing about psyllium husk powder is that it’s practically undetectable. I like to add it to my protein shakes or juices and have even sprinkled it on baked sweet potatoes, scrambled eggs and other foods without being able to taste or feel it on my tongue. You do want to drink up quickly if you add it to a shake or drink, because that gel action starts pretty quickly. Also, don’t add too much or your shake or juice will thicken up too much to be palatable. One or two teaspoons are all you want for a large shake, smoothie or whatever you may be juicing.
Psyllium husk powder will run you under $10 for a large container that will last for months. A little bit of this goes a long way and at 3g of fiber per teaspoon, it’s a fast, easy and calorie-free way to ramp up your fiber intake.
5. Add flax seeds to your food.
Flax seeds are fantastic. They are full of healthy fats and one tablespoon of raw flax seeds has 84mg of potassium, 66mg of phosphorous, 26mg of calcium and 40mg of magnesium. PLUS, that one tablespoon also contains 2.8g of fiber, almost 2g of protein and only 55 calories!
One of the easiest ways to get flax seeds into your diet is to mix them up with the other nuts and seeds you’re snacking on. But you can also add them to oatmeal, salads, stir them into soups and add them to your homemade vinaigrette. They add a nice nutty flavor to a lot of foods.
6. Switch to quinoa for those grains.
I’m a huge fan of quinoa. It’s a seed that acts like a grain and is considered one of the all-time best superfoods because it not only contains a ton of micronutrients and healthy fats but also 2.2g of complete protein per 100g. That 100g also packs 2.8g of fiber, 172mg of potassium, 152mg of phosphorous, 64mg of magnesium and 17mg of calcium, all for 120 measly calories.
One the coolest things about quinoa, is that it’s a great substitute for almost any grain you can think of. You can serve it as a side dish instead of rice (try cooking it in chicken stock instead of water), use it in place of pasta by topping it with your favorite tomato sauce, stir it into soups and stews like you would rice or pasta or even eat is as a hot cereal. We like to cook up a big batch of it at dinner time and stick the leftovers in the fridge. Then we just scoop some into a bowl with a little coconut milk and nuke it. Top that with some fresh berries and you have an incredibly delicious, nutrient-dense breakfast that will keep you full for hours.
Getting more fiber into your diet doesn’t have to mean eating more carbs, adding a lot of calories or having to give up other foods so you can add more high-fiber foods without increasing your calorie intake.
By using these tips for getting more fiber, you will add very little (if any) to your calorie intake and you will feel more satisfied.
You’ll also feel the benefits of your increased fiber intake within just a couple of days. Your digestion will work more smoothly. You’ll rid your body of waste and toxin build-up, making you feel lighter, cleaner and more energetic. You’ll have less inflammation throughout your body. Your blood sugar levels will also improve, since the high fiber content of these foods will slow the absorption of sugars into your bloodstream. That also means improved insulin levels.
You don’t have to use all of these tips at once, though you certainly can. Just choosing and adding two or three of these at a time will have a huge impact on your body. Start with the two or three that appeal to you the most or are easiest for you, then add one or two every week after that. You won’t regret it.
Hey what’s up Vince Del Monte Community, I hope you’re doing swell. First off I got to thank Vince for having me and allowing me to share with your my skinny guy story.
Just like Vince, I too was a long distance runner all through my teens and weighed about 154 pounds soaking wet! (yeah, I was massive). When I finally decided enough was enough and it was time to grow my confidence I got into the gym.
I had absolutely had no idea what I was doing and ended up getting a program off a buddy of mine who was a lot bigger than me. I managed to put on about 5 kilos in the first year. But then all the gains came to a screeching halt and I was wondering why…
My diet was the same.
My program was the same.
My intensity, dedication and motivation were all the same.
Why wasn’t I growing?
After hunting around in search of the answer to bust through my muscle building plateau. Vince finally opened my eyes and made me realise that my answer, “nothing has changed”, was the reason behind my muscle building stalls.
I was doing the same thing, day in, day out and was never taking my body to a new level to force it to grow.
As Vince has stated a numerous amount of times and in his muscle building programs like Hypertrophy Max (which is currently closed but it opening December 15 which you can get on the early notification list HERE), progressive overload is one of the most important factors if you wish to add muscle mass and strength to your physique.
Put in simple terms progressive overload is when you increase the stress placed on the body, whether that be CNS, musculoskeletal or the cardiovascular system, over time in order to avoid plateaus and continually make progress in the gym.
If you ignore the rule of progressive overload you will simply not make any further muscle, strength, cardio vascular or physique gains in the gym.
You may be already aware of this, and to avoid sounding like a broken record, I’m going to reveal to you the mistakes I made when I THOUGHT I was applying progressive overload correctly and give you an additional 5 tips to spark new gains…
Top 3 Most Common Progressive Overload Techniques
The 3 most common methods you can use when applying progressive overload to your training regime include…
To use volume as your progressive overload method you could simply add one set each week to a particular exercise. So week one you complete three sets, week two 4 sets and so on.
To use intensity are your progressive overload method you could simply add 2.5 kilos to the bar each week. So week one you deadlift 75 kilos, week two you perform 77.5 kilos and so on.
To use volume as your progressive overload method you can reduce the amount of rest you take between sets. So week one you could rest 120 seconds between sets of squats, week two you reduce the rest down to 90 seconds and so on.
#1 Mistake Where People Go Wrong With Progressive Overload
Most fitness enthusiasts apply progressive overload incorrectly by adding too much too soon. Usually each week they will add an extra set, plus more weight and also try to reduce the amount of rest between sets.
All this will do is set you up for an injury. The body can only take so much before it breaks.
Also, if you’re not getting any results from your training program, how do you know what is working and what isn’t? If you are applying all three progressive overload methods you won’t know which one to manipulate.
5 Tips to Apply Progressive Overload Correctly
I’ve been talking a great deal in the last several weeks about the problems of toxin build-up, toxins and chemicals in our diets, poor digestive health and inflammation. All of these things have a profound effect not only on our overall health, but also on our bodybuilding efforts.
The Daily Assault on Our Bodies
Our bodies are inundated from every direction on a daily basis by elements that compromise both our immune systems and our digestive systems. Environmental toxins and oxidative stress create an imbalance in the number of free radicals running around in our bodies causing lowered immunity, inflammation and hormonal problems, including an excess of cortisol in our bloodstreams.
Pesticides and herbicides in our foods are at an all-time high. Grains are heavily sprayed. They go not only into the breads and cereals and pastas we eat, but also into the cows from which we get our dairy products and the animals that produce steaks, chops and chicken breasts. Commercially grown fruits and vegetables are also heavily treated with pesticides and herbicides that cannot be washed away. All of these toxins build up in our digestive tracts, making it impossible for us to absorb the nutrients we eat.
Antibiotics that are fed to cows and chickens and other livestock come to us through their meat and milk products. These antibiotics kill off the good gut bacteria that we need to protect ourselves from disease, infection and parasites and reduce inflammation throughout our bodies.
Today I want to share with you one extremely important thing that you must do each day to help you combat all of these issues, greatly improving your general health and also boosting your muscle-gaining and fat loss ability. That one thing is drinking lemon water every morning.
Why Lemon Juice is So Important
Fresh vegetables and fruits are like wholesome, natural prescription medications. Each of them contains several micronutrients that address specific issues within our bodies. By combining certain vegetables and fruits, you can create a cocktail that specifically addresses your health and bodybuilding needs.
Lemons are one of the best plant foods for cleansing your body of toxins, boosting your immunity, creating a more alkaline state, increasing testosterone production, improving metabolism and repairing your digestive system, making them invaluable to bodybuilders.
Lemons and the Immune System
The immune systems of most Westerners are severely compromised. This results not only in more cancer, infection and illness, but in widespread inflammation throughout our bodies as they try to fight off all of the toxins, bacteria and other threats they’re facing. Inflammation is at the root of many serious diseases, such as heart disease, but also gets in the way of muscle recovery and muscle-building.
Lemons are loaded with Vitamin C, bioflavonoids, limonene, citric acid and magnesium, all of which are powerful weapons for our immune systems. Many of these antioxidants are not stored in large quantities in our bodies; we have to ingest them on a daily basis in order to have enough of a supply on board.
Vitamin C is one of the most important of these. Vitamin C is used to build new cells and repair damaged tissue, which makes it one of the most important micronutrients for muscle-building. However, our immune systems will first use what Vitamin C it has to fight free radicals, infection and toxins, apportioning what’s leftover to repair and build muscle tissue. You have to get a heavy dose of it on a daily basis and the Vitamin C in whole fruits and vegetables is much more bio-available than the stuff you get in tablets.
Vitamin C is also extremely important to fat-burning. It not only reduces the effects of stress (lowering cortisol) but also is used to create l-carnitine, the compound that carries stored fat to the liver, where it can be turned back into glycogen and burned as energy.
By getting all of the antioxidants from lemons, you also reduce overall inflammation because your body has less infection and fewer pathogens to respond to. This further improves muscle recovery times.
Lemons and the Digestive System
If your digestive system is compromised by impaired liver function and toxin buildup, you’re not absorbing all of the nutrients you are eating and you are storing more fat than you should be.
Lemons are one of the most effective foods at helping to cleanse the liver. This accomplishes several things. First, more toxins are filtered out by the liver instead of building up in your digestive tract. Second, the liver is where protein, carbs and fats are broken down into glycogen and stored to be used as fuel. Slowed liver function means a slower metabolism. Also, by cleansing the liver, lemons help improve your liver’s production of bile. Bile is what breaks down dietary fats so that they can be turned into fuel rather than stored around your liver and abdominal area. You’re able to burn more fat, store less of it, and also absorb more of the micronutrients you need to be healthy, build muscle and burn the stored fat you already have.
Lemons and Testosterone
Your liver is responsible for producing testosterone. Compromised liver function means less testosterone and decreased muscle gains. Increasing testosterone production is a very hot topic right now, with all kinds of products swearing they will raise testosterone levels. Articles are being written that tell you a whole list of things you can do to increase testosterone. The simple truth is that the best thing you can do to increase testosterone production is cleanse the organ that produces it!
Lemons and Alkalinity
If you read anything at all on bodybuilding nutrition, you have read about acid/alkaline states and how they affect the body. Alkaline diets are all over the bookstores, magazines and the internet, all promising to correct the highly acidic state caused by poor nutrition. A pH imbalance on the acidic side has a whole host of effects on the body, but several of them are of particular importance to bodybuilders.
Being in an acidic state slows metabolism, causes the body to “steal” calcium, magnesium and potassium from our organs and muscle tissue, slows muscle recovery, creates lactic acid buildup and decreases the amount of oxygen delivered to your muscle tissue.
People think of lemons as being very acidic, but they are actually one of the best foods for increasing alkalinity in the body. The calcium, magnesium and potassium in lemons actually help to alkalize the blood.
How to Harness the Power of Lemon
Now that you know why lemons are so valuable, let’s talk about how to get them working for you.
The very best thing you can do is to drink a glass of warm or room temperature lemon water first thing in the morning. Your liver has been working overtime while you slept and is ready for a good cleansing. Getting your lemon juice first thing in the morning also boosts your energy level and your metabolism.
To make your lemon water, simply squeeze the juice of one half of a large or a whole medium lemon into a glass of room temperature or warm water (This is easier on your digestive system than cold water). Try to drink your lemon water as soon as you get up and at least 20 minutes before eating or consuming your greens drink or juice. A good routine is to drink your lemon juice, then take your shower and dress, then get your greens drink, followed by your breakfast. If these are too many steps, just include your lemon with your greens drink, followed by your breakfast.
You can also get more lemon power throughout the day. Don’t throw out that lemon peel. It contains a large amount of the vitamins and minerals of the lemon. Get the zest from it before you squeeze it and pop it into a plastic bag or small jar. Add the zest to salads, fish, chicken, vinaigrettes or juices throughout the day to get even more of the benefits from lemons.
One important note: Buy organic lemons! This is especially true if you’re going to use the zest, but still important if you’re not. Pesticides and herbicides penetrate the porous skin of citrus fruits, so they’re in the fruit even if you peel it. What’s the point of trying to rid your body of toxins with a food that contains more toxins? Organic lemons are still pretty cheap; they really don’t cost much more than commercial versions.
See and Feel the Benefits of Lemon Very Quickly
Within the first couple of days of drinking your morning lemon water, you will notice increased energy, easier bowel movements (and probably an increase in volume), lighter urine (from better liver function) and less muscle soreness during recovery.
Within a couple of weeks, you will feel lighter and cleaner, feel less sluggish after eating meats or fattier foods, experience even greater energy and start to see increased fat loss, decreased recovery time and improved gains. All of this from something that will cost you pennies a day and take only a few seconds to do. The return on investment doesn’t get much better than that.
We’ve been talking an awful lot over the last several weeks about the incredible benefits of juicing when it comes to your muscle-gaining goals. But juicing isn’t just for helping you gain muscle and improving your overall health. Juicing can also have a huge impact on your ability to burn excess fat faster, more efficiently and much more easily than cutting more calories or just increasing your cardio.
As I’ve said in previous posts, juicing is part of a 360-degree approach to your muscle-gain and fat loss efforts. It provides micronutrients that improve your body’s ability to add muscle and lose fat, speeds up your metabolism, improves digestive function to rid your body of built-up waste and toxins, reduces the effects of oxidative stress (which lowers cortisol levels), helps regulate blood sugar and detoxifies your liver and kidneys for better hormone production.
Working Harder and Eating Less are Not the Answer to Faster Fat Loss
The traditional thinking about burning fat is that you have to focus solely on calorie deficit. While increasing your calorie deficit is part of the solution to fat loss, it has its limits. Let’s say you require 2,500 calories per day and you create a 1,000 calorie per day deficit by cutting 500 calories and doing 500 calories worth of cardio per day. That’s two pounds per week of fat loss. That’s a fair rate of fat loss, but you’re going to be busting your butt on the cardio (especially if you’re lifting every day and having to add cardio time on top of an already busy schedule) and you’ll probably be hungry and irritated.
If you want faster fat loss, you have to either cut more calories, add another workout session or both. At some point, you’re either going to be taking in too few calories (which will increase cortisol levels and cause your body to actually hang onto the fat you’re trying to lose) or you’ll max out your available workout time.
The key to losing fat faster without starving to death or spending almost all of your free time working out is to make your body work more efficiently at burning fat. That means speeding up your metabolism, boosting your immune system and correcting hormonal and digestive issues. The nutrients you get from juicing can do that for you, in minimal time and for minimal calories.
While almost all of the recipes I’ve shared here and in my new book, Get Juiced!, will help you to burn fat, here are five of the best juicing recipes for faster fat loss.
1. The Immune System Strengthener
This juice is one of the best recipes I know for boosting your immune system. Boosting your immune system reduces the free radicals in your body, which improves immunity overall, increases the amount of Vitamin C that can be delegated to creating l-carnitine (which transports stored fat to the liver to be turned into glycogen and burned as fuel) and decreases the amount of cortisol released into your bloodstream. Use a sweeter apple, like Red Delicious to balance out the sourness of the cranberries. The cranberries are loaded with Vitamin C and perfect for cleaning out your digestive tract and battling bad bacteria. Please try to use organic apples for this recipe – much of the micronutrient content is contained in the peel!
Juice everything together and enjoy. This recipe tastes amazing.
2. Pomegranate Punch
Pomegranates are considered one of the most antioxidant-rich foods on the planet, because of their high content of B-vitamins, Vitamin C, riboflavin and phosphorus. This recipe will not only help reduce free radicals (lowering your cortisol levels), but provide a ton of Vitamin C and other inflammation-fighting antioxidants.
Dice the pomegranate before adding it to the juicer, peel and all. Try to use organic apples for this recipe so that you can add them to the juicer with the peel intact, but do remove the seeds before juicing. Apple seeds can be toxic when crushed.
3. Lean, Green Fat-Burning Machine
Parsley is a lot more than a garnish. It’s packed with folic acid and other antioxidants that prevent oxygen-based damage to your body’s cells from free radicals known as oxygen radicals. This lowers cortisol levels to prevent your body from storing new fat, but also stimulates your body to burn fat already stored in your abdominal area. The kale and spinach also have a ton of vitamin C for making more l-carnitine and provide protein for you as well.
Use organic un-waxed cucumber or remove the peel. If this one is a little bitter for your taste, add half an apple or pear to the juicer.
4. Apple-Cucumber Zinger
The ginger in this juice not only adds flavor, it also helps rid your body of built-up toxins and waste. You’d be surprised how many pounds are waste, not fat! The cucumber helps clean out your kidneys for better hormone regulation and secretion and the apples improve digestion and boost your immunity. This makes this juice one of the best you can drink for speeding up fat loss.
Be sure to remove the seeds from the apples and peel the cucumber if it isn’t organic. Then juice together and drink up.
5. Cutter’s Cocktail
This recipe is one of the best juices you can use when you’re cutting. The antioxidants in the kale and spinach boost your metabolism and load you up with Vitamin C. The broccoli, cucumber and lemon are amazing for cleaning out your liver and kidneys so that your hormones are better balanced and to further detox your digestive tract. This recipe is great for ridding your abdominal area of flab caused by toxin buildup and helps your metabolism to melt that fat even faster.
The lemon is in this recipe is one of the key ingredients for helping you to burn fat faster. Since most of the metabolism-boosting micronutrients are in the peel, it’s really essential that you buy organic lemons and juice them peel and all. The cucumber helps mellow out the flavor of the kale and spinach, but if the flavor is still a little strong for your taste, add half a pear or a few berries to the juicer as well.
Some Tips on Maximizing the Fat-Loss Potential of These 5 Juices
One of the most critical times to juice is right after your workout. Juicing is a great way to replenish your carb stores quickly, without adding a ton of sugar or calories. Having said that, you want to use some judgment when it comes to post-workout juicing. A lot depends on your current body fat percentage.
Essentially, if you’re a male with over 15% body fat, you don’t need to take in any more than 30 grams of carbs after your workout (because you already have plenty of stored fat on your body) If you’re a male under 15% body fat than you can handle anywhere from 50-150 grams of carbs after your workout. Finally, if you’re a male with under 10% body fat, you can afford to take in anywhere from 150-300 grams of carbs post workout.
By juicing right after your workout, you are getting the carbs your muscles need and getting them in a form that makes them very easy for your body to absorb and use.
I would recommend that you also add some high-glycemic carbs to your juice from either a carb powder or some combination of cranberry, raspberry or blackberry juice, to boost your insulin levels and help more of that glucose get to your muscles instead of being added to your fat stores.
Another thing that will help you to faster fat loss is to ditch the long sessions of steady-state cardio and switch to high-intensity interval cardio. There are a few excellent reasons for this. First, HIIT burns far more calories over the next 48 hours than steady-state cardio will. With steady-state cardio, you burn calories during your workout and maybe another 100 calories (at best) in the few hours after your workout. But HIIT boosts your metabolism for up to 48 hours after your workout, at which time you should be working out again to keep the momentum going.
Second, HIIT takes far less time than steady-state cardio. Do you want to run for an hour or do sprint intervals for 20 minutes?
Third, HIIT is easily adjusted to increase intensity as your body adapts to your workouts. With steady-state cardio, you’re usually limited to lengthening your workout. Since you only have so much time in your day that limits its fat-burning potential. With HIIT, you can decrease moderate periods and/or increase the length or intensity of your high-intensity periods. There are a ton of ways to keep your body in that adapting phase without adding more and more time to your workout.
With these five great recipes and these simple tips to maximizing their effectiveness, you can realize much faster fat loss than you ever have before and without starving all day or spending what feels like your entire life in the gym. At the same time, you’ll reap all of the health benefits of a healthier digestive system and improved immunity. That’s a win-win.
Juicing isn’t just an awesome thing to do for your overall good health – it’s also one of the best nutritional steps you can take to speed up your muscle gains. The fresh fruits and vegetables you use for your juicing boost your immune system, reduce inflammation, repair your digestive system, help to balance out hormone levels (especially testosterone and cortisol), improve insulin sensitivity and help to regulate blood sugar levels. All of these effects help your body to add muscle.
Write Your Own Muscle-Gaining Prescription
Choosing the right blends of fresh, whole vegetables and fruits for juicing is a lot like writing a prescription. You can actually tailor your juicing ingredients to match certain health goals, whether it be boosting immunity or raising testosterone levels. This is one of the great benefits of juicing because you can address specific needs with specific ingredients and change it up as needed.
Because fresh, whole vegetables and fruits are loaded with a variety of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, you’re never accomplishing just one thing at a time. The same vegetable that boosts immunity also regulates blood sugar and reduces inflammation and so on. You don’t just get one micronutrient with one vegetable, so while you can create a juice that addresses specific goals, you will also be getting plenty of other micronutrients that your body needs on a daily basis.
Start With These Five Awesome Recipes
When you first start juicing, you might feel a little overwhelmed by all of the choices and trying to figure out which fruits and vegetables you need specifically to improve muscle gains. Fortunately, that work has already been done for you. Thanks to my personal juicing coach and health expert, Drew Canole, we already have a ton of fantastic juicing recipes at our disposal. This makes it super easy for you to get started with juicing recipes that were created to target your muscle-gaining potential.
Today I want to share five awesome juicing recipes with you, all of which were designed by Drew to help boost your muscle gains. They’re all really easy to make and taste phenomenal. Add just these five juices to your weekly nutrition plan and you will start to see terrific muscle gains very rapidly. You’ll also have a ton of energy, more stable moods and better mental clarity and focus.
1. Tropical Body Booster
This recipe helps reach your muscle-gain goals by providing important digestive enzymes that will help speed up the process of protein metabolism and synthesis. Mangoes are loaded with Vitamin C and beta carotene as well as several of these important digestive enzymes. The lemon and strawberries add extra Vitamin C and the strawberries and apple also contain resveratrol, which slows cell aging.
Peel the mango and cut the fruit from the pit before juicing. Stem the strawberries, but try to get organic lemons and apples so that you can juice them with the peel on. Juice everything together and enjoy.
2. Apple-Watermelon Super-Cleanse
This is a really powerful kidney-cleansing juice. Cleaning out your kidneys helps them to work more efficiently at producing and releasing several hormones, including testosterone. This increases your ability to add lean muscle mass, but is also incredibly good for your overall health. If the watermelon makes it too sweet for your taste, use a tart apple like Granny Smith or use a bit less watermelon. Try to get organic apples – a lot of the antioxidants and the resveratrol in apples is located in the skin, so you want to juice them skin and all if at all possible.
Remove the rind from the watermelon and the seeds from the apples before juicing. Juice everything together and drink up.
3. Probiotic Power
This juice is loaded with probiotics. Probiotics add beneficial bacteria to your digestive tract so that they can attack the bad bacteria that are causing inflammation and making it hard for your body to absorb important nutrients. This is good for anyone at any time, but especially for people who have just taken a round of antibiotics, which kill good bacteria as well as bad. This is also great for attacking free radicals caused by environmental toxins and oxidative stress. Reducing free radicals frees up your immune system to fight inflammation.
Try to get organic spinach, celery, collards and cabbage for this recipe. Adding pesticides and herbicides to your juice defeats the purpose of drinking something that fights free radicals!
The celery helps neutralize the bitterness of the other veggies, but add half an apple if you need to.
4. The Blood Booster
This juice is a miracle for purifying your blood, helping to rid your body of toxins and building up your iron level. Did you know that a cup of spinach contains more iron than a hamburger patty? It has a lot less fat and calories too. Iron is what your body needs to make hemoglobin, the red blood cells that get oxygen to your muscle tissue. If your blood is low in hemoglobin, your muscles will be starved for oxygen and you won’t see the gains that you’re working so hard to get.
The beta carotene in the carrots boosts immunity, as does the ginger. The carrots also add a little bit of sweetness to this recipe. If the carrots are not organic, please peel them before juicing. Also, parsley is a lot more than a garnish. It’s loaded with folic acid and antioxidants that prevent oxygen-based damage to your body’s cells by specific free radicals known as oxygen radicals. This just further enhances your muscle-gaining potential.
Add the ginger in the middle of these ingredients so that the maximum amount of juice is extracted. If this juice is a little bit too bitter for you, add ½ an apple.
5. Mexican Metabolism Mix
Hot peppers and cayenne pepper are great for opening up your blood vessels and increasing the efficiency of your entire circulatory system. This will have an incredible impact on your muscle gains because it increases the amount of oxygen being delivered to your muscles, both during and after your lifting sessions. That means you have to work harder for muscle fatigue (a good thing) and that your muscle recovery will be sped up. Hot peppers also give your metabolism a really serious boost that lasts more than 30 minutes after you eat them. Boosting your metabolism means faster protein synthesis and better fat-burning, both of which work toward your muscle-gaining goals. The beet contains several valuable antioxidants, but also is a powerful liver-detoxifier to help speed up your metabolism. The Swiss chard and lemon add vitamin C and several other antioxidants to boost your immune system and speed fat-burning. Most of the micronutrient content of lemons is in the peel and white membrane, so it’s best to use organic lemons for this recipe.
Trim the stem end of the beet before juicing and remove some of the jalapeno seeds if you don’t like too much heat. Juice all of the veggies and then stir the cayenne into the finished juice.
If You Do One New Thing, This Should Be It
These are just five of the best recipes I know for muscle gains, but there are so many other combinations and recipes that provide a 360-degree approach to improving your body’s ability to add lean muscle and burn body fat. All of this is reachable without busting your budget on expensive supplements that contain less bio-available and lower-quality micronutrients.
I’ve said many times over the last few weeks that juicing is hands down the best nutritional change I’ve made in the last ten years. This is not only because of what it does for my overall good health, but also because of the impact it has on my muscle gains.
If you’re trying the same things over and over again and expecting to get new results, you are wasting your time and energy. If you do one new thing this year to improve muscle gains, this should be that one thing and you should start as soon as possible. After just a couple of weeks on a juicing program, you’ll wonder why you waited so long to try it and you will never go back to paying hundreds of dollars on vitamin supplements.