This piece is guest authored by Eve Pearce. Eve has worked as a nutritionist with a degree in Food and Nutritional Sciences. She is now a freelance writer covering topics including health research, green food production, family nutrition and health, living with conditions and health education.

Some people find it relatively easy to build muscle, while others may work away at the gym for weeks or months before seeing results. With dedication, however, they too find themselves with increased strength and start to see the difference improved muscle tone and bulk can make to their bodies. Sessions on the lateral raise machine and the leg press are only part of what it takes for the body to build muscle, however. It is equally important to provide the body with the nutrients it requires to do so. Being low in fat, bison meat is a hot topic of conversation at gyms around the country and is gaining popularity as a valuable protein source for people seeking to improve their physique in a healthy way.

As anyone who is serious about gaining muscle knows, good sources of protein are essential in helping them to achieve their goal. In combination with a strength training program, protein provides the body with what it needs to increase muscle mass. However, all too often, protein-rich foods are also foods that are rich in fat. While the body needs some fat in order to function and in order to develop muscles, the fat content of many foods can present a dilemma for the body builder who is anxious that any attendant weight gain should be as a result of bulkier muscles rather than an increase in body fat. While powdered shakes are popular as a quick, easy and relatively low fat source of whey and vegetable protein, animal protein is often high in calories. At just 143 calories per 100g, bison is a tasty and low fat alternative to beef, pork and chicken.

Nutritional Benefits of Eating Bison

It is easy to understand the growing interest in bison within the bodybuilding community. Bison offers a wealth of nutritional benefits for those seeking to gain muscle. In addition to its appeal as a source of low fat protein, bison also provides iron, which enables the body to produce red blood cells, zinc, which helps to promote muscle growth, and vitamin B 12, which helps the body to maintain a healthy metabolism. It is also a natural source of many nutrients which bodybuilders often take in supplement form to help to promote muscle growth. These include creatine to help increase muscle strength, carnetine, which helps the body draw on fat as a fuel, and glutamine, which helps to boost the immune system. Bison is also lower in fat than many other meats, including chicken and pork. Moreover, because of the way the bison are raised, the meat is free of added hormones, antibiotics and steroids.

Protein for Muscle Development

The importance of the role played by a healthful and protein rich diet in gaining muscle cannot be overstated. As well as incorporating bison meat into their diets, people seeking to gain muscle typically adhere strictly to a diet which is rich in fish, lean meat of all kinds, eggs and protein shakes. It is equally important to follow a carefully-planned exercise program, which may involve both strength training and cardio workouts in order to achieve optimal fitness and see results in terms of muscle gain. However, sometimes people who are intent on gaining muscle decide to turn to other resources to help them attain their goal—some of which may do more harm than good to their health in the long run. Bodybuilding enthusiasts may, for example, see results with the use of certain supplements designed to help build muscle. However, some of these supplements may present health risks to them over time, or they could cause other problems if the person becomes dependent on them. In such cases, the road to restoring full health could be an arduous one.

A Tasty Twist on Familiar Dishes

While its health benefits are, in themselves, highly attractive for anyone seeking to increase muscle bulk, bison is also enjoying popularity with meat lovers in general. This is due to its reputation for being both versatile and rich in flavor. While there are many more recipes for other meats online and in recipe books, those recipes can easily be adapted for anyone who wishes to substitute bison for those meats.

Bison can be prepared in many of the same ways as other popular meats, including beef, pork and chicken. Bison steaks, burgers and ribs are all available, as is ground bison which can be served as a tasty twist in any dish in which ground beef is normally used. Pastrami lovers can even treat their taste buds to the experience of a bison pastrami sandwich!

Attaining your muscle gain goals in a healthy way takes times and, for most people, involves a great deal of self-discipline and some radical lifestyle changes. While some bodybuilding enthusiasts may feel that the flavor of the foods they put into their bodies are of secondary importance compared to their nutritional value, for many people, persevering with their goal of building muscle is made easier and pleasanter if they are able to enjoy meals that are both tasty and rich in the nutrition they need. With bison, they can enjoy the best of worlds.