There are a whole lot of plant-based and vegan friendly supplements out there on the market, many of which will promise to build you muscle in no time.
Truth is, supplements don’t really help you build a crazy amount of muscle.
Most people are just looking for the easy way out, the shortcut, or the path of least resistance. But there’s nothing out there that will have you magically pack on 30 pounds of lean mass by next month.
You build muscle by doing 3 things:
- Lifting heavy weights and getting stronger
- Eating in a caloric surplus with adequate protein/carbs/nutrients
- Getting enough rest/recovery
Now don’t get me wrong, supplements can certainly give you an edge. If you’re doing all the three things above, taking a supplement can help ease/speed up the muscle building process.
I recommend everyone look into taking supplements.
So for all you herbivores out there, I decided to give you the top 3 vegan muscle building supplements you should consider.
Gimmick? Maybe… Maybe Not…
It depends on how you use it.
If you think that just protein powder alone will pack on lean muscle to give you a chiseled physique, you’re totally wrong.
It’s not some magical pixie dust.
Protein powder should only serve you one purpose.
To help you reach your protein goals…
In order to gain muscle, you need to be consuming between .6-.8 grams of protein per pound of bodyweight.
So if you weigh 200 pounds that means consuming between 120g and 150g of protein per day.
For some of you, that may seem like a lot of protein…
That’s because it is!
If you’re not able to reach your protein goal on food alone, that’s where protein powder comes in!
Generally, most single servings of protein powder will have between 15-25g of protein.
If you’re not on track to reach your protein goal, have a protein shake with a serving or two of your go-to plant-based protein powder in between your meals.
Mix up a shake with a plant-based milk, spinach, a banana, and your protein powder.
You now have a solid meal with a good amount of protein to help you reach your macronutrient goals.
Found naturally in the body, supplemental creatine will help give you more energy and increase your power output during workouts.
What this translates to is increasing both the weight lifted and volume you can complete in a workout.
In the end this will increase both your overall strength and muscle size.
And for those of you wondering – Yes, creatine is vegan. Supplemental creatine is created in a lab through a crystallization process.
Creatine works by storing itself as energy in your cells.
It help create more ATP.
What does ATP do?
Known as ‘molecular currency,’ ATP helps transfer energy within the cell.
This means the more ATP you have the more energy your body can transfer and move around for metabolic functions.
During a workout, you’re depleted on energy.
The stored ATP helps replenish your cells full of energy, allowing you to get back to your next set and kick some ass!
By simply taking just 3-5g of creatine daily, you’ll help increase both your strength and lean muscle mass.
Creatine is completely safe and healthy, and it provides great results.
Even better, creatine is cheap. You can get a small tub of creatine monohydrate on Amazon or your local supplement store for $14 and it’ll last you over 4 months easy.
You’ve probably never heard of this herbal supplement before.
It’s an ancient herb that originates from India and has been used for thousands of years.
It’s been used as a natural medicine for enhancing mood and relieving stress.
Ashwagandha has been shown to increase both physical strength and testosterone levels in men!
But don’t just take my word for it, check out these studies.
How much should you take a day?
Most supplemental serving sizes around 1000mg are perfect.
You can take ashwagandha in the form of powder, tea, or capsules.
Capsules I find to be easiest, as they are tasteless, and convenient to swallow every morning.
It’s not the most common supplement out there for most gym-goers but you should definitely give it a try!
Use the natural power of the earth and herbs to help fuel your strength!
Are There Any of Supplement I Shouldn’t Take?
Yes. I only recommend taking the above three plant-based muscle building supplements above.
A lot of the other stuff on the market is just money making gimmicks for companies.
Much of the supplements are also not regulated by the FDA.
Here’s a list of supplements you should stay away from…
Don’t Take – Amino Acids/BCAA’s
First off, most of these BCAA supplements are made from feathers, human hair, and other nasty stuff. They’re not vegan!
Second, they’re pretty pointless.
If you’re consuming enough protein throughout the day to reach your protein goals, it’s no question that you’re also acquiring all the essential amino acids you need.
BCAA’s area waste of money and time, plain and simple!
Don’t Take – Weight Gainers/Mass Gainers
Never really understood these.
I’ve heard claims that one guy put on 60 pounds of muscle within 6 months of using this stuff.
Just stick to good old simple protein powder.
Mass gainers are not healthy nor needed.
And if you’re really keen on gaining weight that quickly, just eat in a large caloric surplus. (Although I don’t recommend this, you’ll just end up gaining lots of fat!)
Don’t Take – Testosterone Boosters
They don’t work…
Studies show that that might raise your testosterone by a fraction of a percent.
It’s really not worth the money.
If you want to boost your test – lift weights, eat well, and get some quality sleep. That’s all there is to it.
Too many people are looking for a magical pill that will shoot their T-Levels up sky high so they can build crazy amounts of muscle.
These “testosterone boosters” will not do that!