There’s another obstacle that you’ll become increasingly aware of and that’s your ever-expanding grocery budget. In rough economic times such as these, you might find that you have to budget your grocery spending, which makes it even harder to fit in the calories necessary to start growing.
Creating a mass-building diet on a budget can be tough, but with a few minor changes to the types of foods you’re eating, you can effectively boost your total caloric intake without boosting your total grocery bill.
Here’s how to create a mass-building diet on a budget.
Shop the Bulk Bins
Rule No. 1 when creating a mass-building diet on a budget is to stop at the bulk bins when you walk into the grocery store. You can get a number of products here that pack a powerful caloric punch and don’t cost a fortune. Examples include nuts, which are a tremendous source of healthy fats; pasta, which is great for pre- and post-workout meals; dried fruit, which is the perfect good snack to have on hand; and bulk rice, which is a quick staple to eat with your meals.
You can also get dry rolled oats, which can be eaten either cold with milk like regular cereal (this is less filling than cooked oatmeal, which will help you get your caloric intake higher), or tossed into your protein shake for additional slow-burning carbs that will enhance your muscle glycogen reserves.
Don’t Eliminate the Yolk
If you’ve typically shunned egg yolks in the past for fear of their cholesterol or total-fat content, it’s time to add them back into your diet if you’re creating a mass-building diet on a budget.
It’s been demonstrated that having one or two egg yolks a day can actually be part of an overall healthy diet, plus the additional small amount of saturated fat can help boost testosterone levels slightly. Furthermore, at 60 calories per yolk, it’s another way to squeeze a few more calories into your day.
With eggs being one of the cheaper protein options out there, this definitely is a cost-effective way to meet your needs.
Always Have Peanut Butter on Hand
You already know nuts are a good option for a healthy source of fat, but don’t overlook peanut butter as well. At only a few dollars a jar, it’s great to add to shakes, smear over bagels (another source of high-density carbohydrates that will boost your caloric intake) or added to your morning bowl of oatmeal. Just watch out for the popular kid brands, as these contain a lot of added sugar. Instead, opt for natural peanut butter that has the oil on top.
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Avoid Costly Supplements
Some of you may be in the habit of spending good money on supplements each month, which is another bad habit to correct if you want to keep your budget in check.
The truth is that with a good training program and a proper diet, many of those supplements aren’t going to add many additional benefits to your training; therefore, you aren’t going to be sacrificing much by not using them.
The main supplements you should still be using are a multivitamin, fish oil, whey protein powder, and possibly creatine (which is a cheap supplement anyway). Adhering to these basics will allow you to do without the rest.
Utilize Skim Milk Powder
Finally, the last thing you should consider doing is to add some skim milk powder to your diet. With an average of 100 calories, 9 grams of protein and 13 grams of carbs per three tablespoons, it’s a simple way to boost the nutritional value of your shakes or oatmeal. Most people find they actually prefer the taste of protein shakes when skim milk powder has been added, due to the fact that it makes for a creamier and thicker consistency.
budgeting for bulk
So, be sure you keep these ideas in mind as you go about creating a mass-building diet on a budget. If you also watch for sales on meat products, you can purchase larger quantities and freeze portions for later use.