Eating protein-rich foods alone won't build big muscles.
Muscle is gained through a combination of muscle-strengthening exercise, and a diet that contains protein and sufficient energy from a balance of carbohydrates and fats.
Not all the protein you eat is used to build new muscle. If you overeat protein, the excess will be used mostly for energy once your body has what it needs for muscle repair.
Most fitness enthusiasts can get enough protein from a healthy, varied diet without having to increase their protein intake significantly.
Healthy sources of protein:
Beans, peas and lentils
Cheese, yoghurt and milk
Fish, including oily fish like salmon or mackerel
Tofu, tempeh and other plant-based meat-alternatives
Lean cuts of meat and mince
Chicken and other poultry
A source of protein should be included at most mealtimes to optimise muscle building.
Taking in protein before and after a workout has been shown to help kickstart the muscle repair process.
Training protein snacks:
Milk of all types – but lower-fat types contain less energy
Unsweetened soy drink
Natural dairy yoghurt of all types – including Greek yoghurt and kefir
Soy yoghurt and other plant-based alternatives
Unsalted mixed nuts and seeds
Unsweetened dried fruit
Hummus with carrot and celery sticks