If you want to see the best possible results from your calisthenics workouts you will need to make sure you are eating certain things.
The calisthenics diet could offer you the nutrients you need for success, but what should you be eating?
The following guide will look at this diet plan in more detail, helping to make sure you learn what to eat to build muscle or to lose fat. We will also reveal what supplements you should be taking.[toc]
You Should Try To Eat Naturally
To build muscle mass or to burn body fat, while also helping to improve your overall health you should consider making a few changes to what you currently eat.
For certain, you should try and limit the amount of junk food you consume. So out should go those trips to buy a hamburger when you are feeling hungry.
Junk food is full of unnatural or man-made ingredients that can cause a host of issues.
If possible you should try and avoid consuming any of the following ingredients:
- Trans fats (hydrogenated oils)
- High-fructose corn syrup
- Artificial sweeteners
- Sodium nitrites and nitrates
- Monosodium glutamate
Whenever you visit your local grocery store you should always spend a little time reading the product labels, to check that none of these ingredients are included.
Any products that contain artificial ingredients, additives, or colours are best avoided.
An essential tip when choosing produce is to choose those that contain as few ingredients as possible or to make your own meals from scratch with individual ingredients.
Opt For Organic When Possible
A healthy diet will be full of fruits and vegetables. This is because they are full of essential nutrients.
This makes sense as fruits and veggies are typically low in calories but contain plenty of vitamins and minerals essential for good health.
However, you should be aware that not all produce you find in the supermarket is the same. If at all possible you should opt for organic produce. These are fruits and vegetables that are grown on farms that do not use synthetic pesticides.
Pesticides are best avoided when trying to get in shape because they have been linked with weight gain .
These pesticides can also impair your gut microbiota. These microorganisms live in your digestive tract and help control your immune system and weight. They are also used in the digestive process.
When buying organic there are a few issues to contend with:
- Organic produce is typically more expensive due to the cost of growing it
- Not all stores have much of a selection of organic produce
If you are unable to buy organic, you should make sure to wash the produce thoroughly to remove any pesticides.
You Should Be Eating Plenty Of Protein
Protein is incredibly important for muscle growth, it is the main building block of muscle and helps to repair the micro-tears that occur after an intense calisthenics workout .
If you want to lose weight and experience fat loss you should make sure you are consuming adequate amounts of protein. It has been shown to boost your metabolism, which in turn will help to burn more calories than usual, plus helps to lower your appetite .
You should be aiming to consume around 1 gram of protein for every pound in body weight every day . So if you were to weight 180 pounds you should aim to consume 180 grams of protein.
Good source of protein include:
- Poultry (chicken or turkey)
- Lean beef
- Pork tenderloin
- Milk, cheese, or yoghurt
Vegans or vegetarians may wonder how they are supposed to get enough protein from their diet. Luckily, there are plant-based foods they could try:
- Tofu, tempeh, and edamame
- Seeds like chia and hemp
- Dark, leafy greens like kale
One thing you need to be aware of when choosing your protein sources is whether there are any additional chemicals found on them.
Sometimes livestock is unnaturally bulked up with growth hormones to increase the potential profits. They are also pumped full of antibiotics.
These chemicals are not good for you, and may increase the risk of developing numerous issues, including cancer .
Don’t Forget About Grains And Dairy
It is not necessary for you to eat grains or dairy while on the calisthenics diet. It is certainly possible for you to get the necessary macronutrients from non-gluten or non-dairy sources.
Although many of us love eating grains and dairy, many of us struggle to digest them. Leading to issues like bloating, pain, and a lack of energy.
If you believe yourself to have a gluten or dairy intolerance then I would suggest cutting them for your diet for a few weeks to see how you feel.
What Supplements Should You Be Taking?
If you have followed our above guide then it is likely that you are getting enough of the nutrients you need to build muscle and strength, while boosting your overall fitness levels.
For some of you, you may feel that you may need additional supplementation. If this sounds like you then I would suggest adding the following supplements to your regime.
Protein powders are one of the most popular supplements available. They are ideal for those who may not be getting enough protein from their diet alone.
There are various types of protein powder:
- Whey – This is a complete protein that can be absorbed quickly and easily.
- Casein – This variety of protein is digested slowly so is best taken before bed. It contains glutamine, which helps with post-exercise recovery.
- Soy, hemp, and pea – These varieties are perfect for vegans or vegetarians.
As there are a number of different brands and flavours available you will have to experiment to find your favourite. Some varieties are low in carbohydrates, which makes them ideal for those looking to lose fat.
There are various amino acids, many of which cannot be produced by your body. These are known as essential amino acids, three of which are branched-chain amino acids, or BCAAs (leucine, isoleucine and valine).
To increase your intake of BCAAs you can eat more eggs, meat, and dairy products. Supplementation is also an option.
BCAAs offer the following benefits:
- An increase in muscle protein synthesis 
- A reduction in muscle soreness 
- Less fatigue during exercise 
- Prevents muscle wastage 
Creatine is a natural substance produced by your body that has been shown to boost athletic performance .
When supplementing with creatine it will turn into creatine phosphate in your body, this in turn ensures more adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is produced. This can then be used as energy for muscle contractions.
Adding creatine to your list of supplements will ensure an improvement in your fitness levels.
If you have followed our guide then you really should be getting adequate amounts of every nutrient you require for good health.
There will be certain circumstances where you may want to start using a multivitamin, for example:
- If you are unable to eat certain foods due to an allergy or intolerance
- If you are vegan or a vegetarian who is missing the nutrients found in animal products
- If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, as you may require more iron or folate to ensure your baby develops as it should
- If you are older as you may find it more difficult to absorb the nutrients from the food you eat
The Importance Of The Calisthenics Diet
If you want to see the best results from your calisthenics workouts then you need to be eating the right kinds of foods.
I would suggest that you eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes and whole grains, while also choosing a lean protein source too. Grass-fed beef or a plant-based alternative would be my recommendation.
Try to avoid, or at least attempt to limit your intake of junk food. Instead, try to fill your diet with whole foods that are full of the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy. These foods are also low in calories, fat, and cholesterol.
When you focus on these healthy foods you are giving yourself the greatest chance of achieving your goal of building muscle and losing fat.
Try the diet for yourself and let us know in the comments below what you experience.