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When Bulking, is Eating Clean Important?

I just started Starting Strength, and would like to pack on muscle. I have changed my diet around from frozen pizzas and hot pockets to chicken, rice, eggs, and stuff like that. However, if I only eat clean, I only get about 2k or so calories a day. I can’t afford to buy a lot of clean food, so is it alright to continue eating this food but also to not worry about having something not clean to get more calories?

Yeah I know, 2kcal isn’t much, but I can’t afford a lot. I started drinking more milk and having more PB sandwichs, but im not sure it will be enough.

Chicken is cheap. So are eggs. It just takes a bit of time to prepare them.

Chug olive oil.

canned tuna is a cheap source of protein, I use it in a pinch. Cottage cheese is a great source of casein protein to take before bed which is also pretty cheap. To make sure you’re getting enough clean calories you’re gonna have to sacrifice some taste.

i don’t wanna be one of “those” guys…but…there are so many threads on this.

all the answers above work though. best of luck dude

Cottage cheese works great. I mix mine into a shake to get rid of the dull taste.

have a tuna, milk and whey shake. Sounds like shit but its very tasty.

If your goal is truly just to ‘pack on muscle’ and you won’t freak out if you gain a bit of body fat, then I wouldn’t obsess over eating clean.

Eating clean is obviously preferable to eating crap, but the most important thing for ‘packing on muscle’ is eating a TON OF CALORIES AND PROTEIN.

If eating clean would limit you to 2K calories a day, then you’re better off not eating clean.

[quote]Muscles297 wrote:
canned tuna is a cheap source of protein, I use it in a pinch. Cottage cheese is a great source of casein protein to take before bed which is also pretty cheap. To make sure you’re getting enough clean calories you’re gonna have to sacrifice some taste.[/quote]

BAH…eating clean is not cheap, but its also the most flavorful way of eating. The only reason to sacrifice taste, is becuase you are lazy and/or too used to junk processed foods.

When I bulk, I try to eat 6 times a day with roughly 800 to 1000 calories at each feeding. Generally I think that if you’re getting around 30g of protein with each meal, the calories are what are going to put you in an anabolic state. If you are consuming a lot of bad fats, you NEED to balance them out with omega 3s. And drink a ton of water.

[quote]nycsoccax wrote:
Chug olive oil.[/quote]

…and milk.

[quote]Doug Adams wrote:
nycsoccax wrote:
Chug olive oil.

…and milk.[/quote]

Whole Milk

Yes, I think so. I believe eating clean promotes better insulin sensitivity which means better gains. But I think that if you had to choose between eating a mcdonald’s cheeseburger and nothing at all, most people would tell you to take the cheeseburger.

Olive oil is great though, I also found some omega 3 balanced canola oil that works well for me. Completely packed with calories.

Also, your body gets used to eating more food after a while of force feeding yourself, so if that’s what you’re doing it probabyl wont last forever.

[quote]johnward82 wrote:
Muscles297 wrote:
canned tuna is a cheap source of protein, I use it in a pinch. Cottage cheese is a great source of casein protein to take before bed which is also pretty cheap. To make sure you’re getting enough clean calories you’re gonna have to sacrifice some taste.

BAH…eating clean is not cheap, but its also the most flavorful way of eating. The only reason to sacrifice taste, is becuase you are lazy and/or too used to junk processed foods.[/quote]

this bro says that he doesn’t have the money to support enough clean calories throughout the day. Im just giving him some reccommendations on clean foods that ARE cheap. Most of which get very bland after a while.

This is the one problem I seem to come across… I cant get enough calories in clean foods and my budget for food every week isnt that much… Im probably going to get a tub of Grow whey to make sure I get enough protein at least or maybe some muscle milk just to get extra calories.

Muscle milk is expensive. Starting Strength recommends 1 gallon of milk per day. I am doing that. 1 gallon of kroger brand 1% milk costs 4.50 and delivers 130g of protein as well as 1600 calories. It requires no prep and is ready to drink throughout the day.

Add that to the food your already eating and you are surely eating over 2500/day. You should be able to eat for 10$ per day. If you have a grill, buy some chicken on sale in bulk and cook them all at one time, put them in the fridge and eat throughout the week. Milk is what I think will work best for you though.

At the level of calories required to bulk, you’d better keep it clean 90%+ of the time. If not for your six-pack, then for your overall health. Our lifestyle here isn’t life prolonging you know…

4.50 for a gallon of milk everyday is pretty expensive too. Im just talking about getting a tub of muscle milk and drinking a serving or two. Im just tryin to get by cheap! haha

If you get a good deal on muscle milk, you could have two servings a day for about $3.50 a day. That only gets you about 700 calories and 64 grams a protein… that is if you mix it with water, obviously there will be more calories and protein if you mix it with milk.

But a gallon of milk seems like the best bang for your buck in terms of bulking. Maybe have a Grow! shake immediately post workout only and a gallon of milk throughout the day

[quote]Zap Branigan wrote:
Chicken is cheap. So are eggs. It just takes a bit of time to prepare them.[/quote]

Dude where have you been? Eggs are fucking outrageous and so is chicken. Everytime I arrive at the cash register at costco I yell, “Time to bleed!” ala coleman. Tuna packets are cheap, I just got a crate of em from Target for 87cents a pop. At 30 or so grams of protein you can’t go wrong.