Protein and carbohydrates tend to be the first types of foods that come to mind when we speak about bodybuilding. A lot of people tend to forget about what an important role vegetables play in our day-to-day diet. Vegetables do quite a bit for us; everything from giving us essential vitamins to helping our skin and hair health! I know, I know, I AM speaking to vegetarians here. We still can’t overlook the importance of vegetables in our bodybuilding vegetarian diet.
Did you know the USDA Dietary Guidelines for Americans actually recommends having 3-5 servings of vegetables a day? That means, if we eat 1 serving of vegetables at each sitting, we should be consuming vegetables at EVERY meal. Keep this in mind when planning your meals for the week. One serving of vegetables is typically about half a cup, or enough to fit perfectly in the palm of your hand. Almost all vegetables can be eaten either raw or cooked, just be wary when cooking up your vegetables, that you aren’t greasing it up or putting so much sodium in them to where it actually becomes harmful for your body as opposed to good for it. Remember: Eating something good doesn’t balance out eating something bad!
Incorporating vegetables into your diet is a very easy way to make a poor diet become healthier again. Even if eating something good doesn’t balance out eating something bad, every good thing you put into your body will make you healthier! It is proven that vegetables contain different types of antioxidants and cancer fighting agents to help you live a longer and healthier life. For example, vitamin C will help your body repair after long bouts of stress and/or illness and help your body prepare itself so it can further protect itself in the future.
There is also a large amount of fiber in vegetables, which helps the digestive system pass through food and absorb nutrients a lot more easily. Eating large amounts of fiber will help your digestive system stay clear and healthy and able to process foods easily. Remember, your digestive system is like a muscle in and of itself, and you want to keep it operating correctly. Your colon is how you get nutrients to your blood-stream. When your colon is not operating correctly, it will release toxins in your blood-stream as opposed to nutrients.
As always, we hope you have a healthy day fellow bodybuilders, and don’t forget to like our page on Facebook! It would really help us get the word out there!
Compiled below is a list of some of the best vegetables for bodybuilding:
|Vegetable Type||Serving Amount||Calories||Carbs
|Asparagus||4 medium stalks, 2oz||11||2.2||1.3||0.1|
|Kidney Beans||boiled, 1/2 cup, 3oz||108||19.4||7.2||0.4|
|Brocolli||1 cup chopped, 3oz||35||5.6||2.4||0.3|
|Cabbage||1 cup shredded, 5oz||41||9.8||2.1||0.1|
|Carrots||1 cup chopped||52||12.3||1.3||0.3|
|Cauliflower||1 cup chopped, 3.5oz||23||4.1||1.8||0.4|
|Celery||1 cup chopped, 3.5oz||14||3.6||0.7||0.2|
|Corn||1/2 cup kernels, 3.5oz||354||82.3||10.8||4.3|
|Cucumber||1/2 cup slices, 2oz||7||1.3||0.3||0.1|
|Lentils||1/2 cup boiled, 3.5oz||115||19.9||8.9||0.4|
|Iceberg Lettuce||1 cup shredded, 1.9oz||8||1.7||0.5||0.1|
|Mushrooms||1/2 cup pieces, 2.5oz||20||3.8||1.4||0.4|
|Onion||1/2 cup chopped, 3oz||36||8.6||0.8||0.1|
|Peas||1/4 cup, 1.5oz||36||6.7||2.3||0.1|
|Bell Peppers||1 cup sliced, 3.2oz||18||4.2||0.8||0.2|
|Pumpkin||1/2 cup mashed, 4oz||23||5.6||0.8||0.1|
|Spinach||1/2 cup, 3oz||20||3.2||2.6||0.3|
|Sweet Potato||1 cup, baked, 7oz||180||41.4||4.0||0.4|
|Brown Potato||1 potato, 7oz||255||58.1||7.0||0.4|
|Tomato||1 tomato, raw, 2.2oz||11||2.4||0.6||0.1|