6 Healthy Vegetables to Improve Muscle Mass

Our diet plays a fundamental role when it comes to increasing muscle mass and improving performance during demanding physical activities. Fortunately, there are certain vegetables that can be our best allies.
6 Healthy Vegetables to Improve Muscle Mass

Last update: 16 June, 2019

Are you trying to gain muscle mass? Do you want to have a more toned and defined body? Proteins and supplements aren’t the only way you can increase muscle mass. This article will focus on six that vegetables can help you increase muscle mass in a healthy way.

We all know that following a diet is hard. No one likes to go on a diet. However, the success of your training and body goals depends on your diet and nutrition habits.

Overall, eating foods that increase your muscle mass is very important for those who workout. Exercising and training according to your own body’s needs is important. However, without the right diet, you won’t achieve the desired results.

The vegetables mentioned in this article won’t only help increase your muscle mass, but they’ll also help keep you healthy. Read on to find out which vegetables can help you achieve your training and body goals!

A Solution for Vegan

Generally, people who want to increase muscle mass focus on eating a lot of proteins, specifically meat.

But what to vegans and vegetarians eat, then? What about people who generally refrain from eating meat for environmental, health or religious reasons? Can’t they be muscular or have defined muscles?

Of course they can!

These people should focus on vegetables packed with nutrients. These vegetables are a suitable source of nutrients that will help you develop healthy and strong muscles. 

However, it’s important to note that vegetable protein can’t help you gain muscle in the same was as meat protein. Therefore, you may not see results as fast as you would like.

In addition, food must always be paired with adequate training, especially if only vegetable proteins are consumed.

That said, let’s take a look at some of the vegetables that can help.

6 Healthy Vegetables that Help Increase Muscle Mass

1. Spinach


Spinach is a significant source of glutamine. Glutamine is one of the twenty amino acids that are involved in the composition of proteins. Therefore, it plays an important role in the development of lean muscle mass.

In addition, it also contains a component called coenzyme Q10. It’s similar to an antioxidant, and it strengthens muscles.

Plus, spinach is a great source of magnesium. Magnesium is essential for the proper functioning of energy metabolism, or creating energy from nutrients. Magnesium is also needed for the maintenance of nerve and muscle function.

Finally, spinach is also rich in arginine, an amino acid that stimulates the pituitary gland. Thus, it helps stimulate the production of human growth hormones.

2. Beets

This vegetable contains high amounts of antioxidants and nitrates. These are important during high-intensity physical training.

This is because our body transforms nitrates into nitric oxide. This element improves cardiovascular function and increases the nutrients in muscle cells. Therefore, it helps improve your performance during a workout.

Beets, without a doubt, are one of the most effective ways to increase muscle tissue. You can include this healthy vegetable in many of your meals. You can cut it into sticks or grate it and put it in your salads or in any healthy smoothie. It will also help give you extra energy.

A recent study showed that people who drank beet juice before doing physical activity had a higher performance output than those who did not drink it.

3. Micro-vegetables and sprouts

Sprouts are filled with anti-inflammatory phytonutrients. Therefore, they help the body absorb amino acids from proteins.

In addition, many of these phytonutrients, such as sulforaphane and glucoraphanin, help your muscles recover faster. This will help you prevent sore muscles, cramps, or other pains and discomforts after an intense workout.

Overall, sprouts and micro-vegetables can greatly help you continue to develop your muscle mass in a strong and healthy way. You can easily incorporate micro-vegetables and sprouts into your diet through veggie rolls, salads, shakes or sandwiches.

4. Parsley


Parsley stands out even among the other healthy vegetables as an important source of nutrients.

It contains many fundamental nutrients, including a vital amino acid called lysine. This helps the growth and regeneration of connective tissues of cartilage and tendons.

You can eat raw parsley in both salads and smoothies combined with any other fruits or vegetables. You can also add it to any meal or snack.

5. Chlorella

Chlorella is a genus of unicellular green algae belonging to the Chlorophyta phylum. It’s of Japanese origin. This is a significant source of the a compound known as the concentrated growth factor (CGF).

In addition, it contains amino acids, nucleic acids and vitamins that help with muscle regeneration.

All this makes chlorella an extremely complete protein. You can incorporate it into shakes so that its flavor is masked by other ingredients.

6. Barley or wheat grass

These plants are rich in vital minerals such as magnesium, calcium, and iron. Likewise, they contain carotenoids that act as antioxidants and help tissue cells remain healthy and strong. You can easily add them to any of your juices.

Consider Consulting a Specialist

Now you’ve got a list of 6 healthy vegetables that you can easily incorporate into your diet to help increase your muscle mass.

If you want to gain more benefits from these vegetables, consult a nutrition specialist. A specialist can tell you exactly how to eat these vegetables to most benefit you.

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Changing habits can be difficult sometimes and it calls for our full commitment and dedication but these ideas can help you eat more vegetables.

  • Oliveira GP., Gama de Abreu M., Pelosi P., Rocco PRM., Exogenous glutamine in respiratory diseases: myth or reality? Nutrients, 2016.
  • Domínguez R., Maté Muñoz JL., Cuenca E., García Fernández P., et al., Effects of beetroot juice supplementation on intermittent high intensity exercise effort. J Int Soc Sports Nutr, 2018.
  • Horii N., Hasegawa N., Fujie S., Uchida M., et al., High intensity intermittent exercise training with chlorella intake accelerates exercise performance and muscle glycolytic and oxidative capacity in rats. Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol, 2017. 312 (4): 520-528.