Working hard in the gym will only take you so far when it comes to muscle building. If you really want to gain some muscle, you need to get a good muscle building diet plan. The two main things you should consider is the daily calorie intake your body needs and the nutrient ratios. These two main factors should also be considered for structuring an effective diet plan for muscle building.
To build muscle, you need to feed your body calories. Figuring out your daily calorie requirement is the only way you can make a step in the right direction. A simple calculation you can use is multiplying your body weight in pounds by 24. For example, if you weigh 160 pounds, you will need 3,840 calories (160 x 24). Additionally, you can use online calorie calculators that take into account other important factors like height, age, level of activity and others. Such calculators are more accurate, but you can start by using the simple method mentioned to have a rough estimate.
Balancing your nutrient ratios is the second aspect you should consider when structuring a muscle building diet plan. Try aiming for a balance of about 25% good fats, 35% protein and 40% carbohydrates. Avoid any heavily processed saturated fats. Wonderful sources of good fats include flax seeds, nuts, olive oil and oily fish. Reduce the amount of junk and increase your whole foods intake to effectively make up your calorie count.
Do not think that building muscle is all about increasing your protein intake. While protein is very important, it is not the only nutrient you need. Shakes and supplements should be avoided as some of them are made using processed ingredients which cause more harm than good. When you use the ratios given, meet the required daily calorie intake and avoid intake of junk and processed foods, you will be able to come up with an effective muscle building diet plan.