Protein isn't the only thing you need to gain muscle mass. Don't be afraid of the carbs. But before you reach for a loaf of bread, here are seven nutrient-packed foods that give you the dose of protein and carbs that you need to get big. And they're all readily accessible at your local supermarket.
Show us a bodybuilder without egg whites in his diet, and we'll show you someone who's missing out on the best protein money can buy. Paired with oatmeal, an egg-white omelet can turn your breakfast into a power meal to fuel the rest of your day.
Buy It: When purchasing eggs, do the basics: Always check the date and open the carton to check for cracks. Also, be sure the eggs are refrigerated in the store and when you get home with them. Although eggs stored out of the refrigerator won't necessarily cause illness, they do lose a grade per day when not refrigerated.
Prepare It: Although many gadgets promise an easy way to separate the yolk from the white, the quickest, easiest method is to simply use your own clean hands. For this six-egg-white omelet recipe, crack six eggs into a medium-sized bowl. Next, using clean fingers, lightly grasp the yolks, lift them out one by one, and discard. With a fork or whisk, whisk the egg whites with salt, pepper and any of your favorite herbs until well combined and a few bubbles have formed on top. Spray a medium nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Place it over medium-high heat and add egg whites. After about 15 seconds, reduce heat to medium. Pull in on the edges of the omelet with a spatula and slightly tilt the pan so the uncooked egg runs under the cooked portion. Continue this around the perimeter until most of the uncooked egg disappears. Then fold the omelet in thirds, as if you're folding a letter to fit it into a business envelope. Using the spatula, carefully slide it from the pan to a plate and eat it immediately.
Nutrients: 99 calories, 21 g protein, 2 g carbohydrate, 0 g fat, 0 g fiber.