However, maintaining an exercise regime and a balanced diet can be very difficult, meaning that minor vitamin deficiencies can easily creep up on you.
Whether you have a carefully balanced diet or fear that you have sub-optimum levels of essential vitamins and minerals, taking these vitamins for muscle growth could boost your gains in a big way.
Building muscle is a complex process where damaged muscle tissue is repaired and strengthened over time, requiring lots of nutrients and time to recover. Rather than eating steak for every meal and pumping iron in the gym daily, your muscles require a wide array of nutrients and time to recover before they can grow.
Muscle recovery is an intrinsic part of building new muscle, though this is less about tough exercise regimes and more about nurturing your body and taking plenty of vitamins for muscle growth. Because muscle growth and muscle recovery go hand in hand, you need to support both biological processes to see muscle gains, giving your muscles time to recover as well as all the nutrients they need to grow.
Vitamins for Muscle Growth and Repair
The key to muscle growth lies as much in the gym as it does in the kitchen – even if you eat a healthy diet, you may find that you’re not getting enough nutrients to fuel additional muscle growth. The CDC estimates that 10-7% of the US population suffers from Vitamin D, Iron and Vitamin B6 deficiencies, so it’s possible that your difficulty in building muscle is linked to poor nutrition.
But apart from a balanced diet containing whole grains, dietary fats, and plenty of protein, what other nutrients are needed to promote muscle growth and strength?
What Vitamins Are Good for Muscles?
Although bodybuilders will happily talk about the benefits of protein for days on end, less is known about the link between vitamins, minerals, and muscle gains. Even if you’re getting plenty of fats, carbohydrates and protein, you may struggle to build up muscle mass without the right vitamins for muscle growth.
It’s common knowledge that physical health stems from a balanced diet and plenty of exercise, but as many of us suffer from some form of vitamin or mineral deficiency, could your diet be holding you back? Consulting your doctor to make sure that you are getting enough vitamins and minerals is a good first step, but to maximise your gains, you need to make sure you get plenty of the good stuff…
Best Vitamins for Building Muscle
Getting your daily requirements of vitamins and minerals from your diet is tough at the best of times, but when over 50% of the American diet consists of “ultra-processed foods”, it’s nearly impossible. For most Americans, it’s just not feasible to eat a nutritionally complete diet all the time (due to a variety of reasons), so we’ve listed some of the best vitamins for muscle growth which are readily available in supplement form below:
1. Vitamin D
Vitamin D is often nicknamed ‘the sunshine vitamin’ as your body naturally produces it when exposed to sunlight, though many people struggle to get healthy levels this way. In order to enjoy the many benefits of vitamin D, such as reduced risk of chronic diseases, improved mood and better strength, your best bet is to take vitamin D supplements to meet your Recommended Daily Intake (RDIs).
2. Vitamin B12
Vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin that has a wide variety of benefits, helping you stay healthy and prevent macular degeneration (eyesight loss), among other things. Vitamin B12 supplements may improve your mood, give you an energy boost and improve mental performance, helping you stick to your exercise routine, so if you want vitamins for muscle growth, you should consider vitamin b12.
3. Vitamin B3
Niacin, also known as Vitamin B3, is an essential nutrient that supports a wide range of biological functions and offers a variety of health benefits in moderate doses. This vitamin can help manage cholesterol, support healthy hormone production and even reduce symptoms of arthritis, helping you to build muscle and stay healthy.
4. Vitamin B6
Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, is an essential vitamin that is significant in metabolism and the creation of red blood cells, making it one of the most desirable vitamins for muscle growth. Like other B vitamins, Vitamin B6 can be found in fatty fish, though it can be tough to get enough from your diet, so you should consider adding vitamin B6 to your regime.
5. Vitamin A
So good you’d be forgiven for thinking the “A” is its grade, vitamin A supports protein synthesis, protects eyesight, and boosts your immune system. Although this vitamin can be found in a variety of foods – such as eggs, fatty fish and carrots – numerous environmental factors like illness and low-fat diets will deplete your Vitamin A levels, making it necessary to supplement your diet with extra vitamin a.
6. Vitamin B9 (Folate/Folic Acid)
Vitamin B9 is often referred to as folate or folic acid: Folate is the naturally occurring form of vitamin B6, while folic acid is the synthetic form. Both forms of this vitamin support a wide range of biological functions, including, cellular division, red blood cell production and metabolism, making it one of the most essential vitamins for muscle growth and general health.