3 Foods That Help Build Muscle | STACK

3 Foods That Help Build Muscle

April 26, 2013 | Kedric Kwan

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Feel doomed to an eternity of scrawniness? If you're a scarecrow of a guy who can't put on weight, you've probably been told to eat more. (Check out Pack on the Pounds With the Skinny Guy Workout.

But simply eating more doesn't always do the trick. The key is to eat calorie-dense foods that help build muscle. Yet you don't want to consume foods that lack nutrients, either. You want your meals to benefit your health and performance. Here are three foods that will do just that and get you out of that size small shirt.

Dried Fruit

Dried fruit is great for athletes trying to gain because it doesn't fill you up. This is because its water content is lost through the drying process, meaning it doesn't take up much space in your stomach.

Dried fruit packs a bunch of calories in a small serving. So it will help you increase your caloric intake and give you fiber and some vitamins as well.

Easy ways to add them into your diet:

  • Toss them in salads
  • Blend them with shakes
  • Eat them by the handful


Milk is packed with protein and calcium, so it's a good choice for both muscles and bones. Milk also has a higher caloric value than most other liquids. I don't recommend a gallon a day however. Just start adding milk to what you eat. Try having a cup in the morning with breakfast and another cup at night with dinner to supply your body with "calorific goodness." (Or try chocolate milk after a workout. Read Why Chocolate Milk Is a Great Recovery Drink.)

Peanut Butter/Nut Butter

Peanut or nut butters add nutrient-dense calories to your diet without overstuffing you. One serving contains roughly 200 calories. And if you're like me, it's easy to eat it by the spoonful.

Start spreading two to three tablespoon on sandwiches, crackers and apples. You'll get approximately 600 more calories in your diet. (For more recipes, see 4 Delicious Muscle-Building Snacks with Peanut Butter.)

For more articles by Kendric Kwan, visit his website.

Kedric Kwan
- Kedric Kwan is a writer, consultant and lover of lifting heavy stuff. Certified through the ISSA, Kwan is on a never-ending quest for knowledge. His...
Kedric Kwan
- Kedric Kwan is a writer, consultant and lover of lifting heavy stuff. Certified through the ISSA, Kwan is on a never-ending quest for knowledge. His...
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