In a digitally confined world, maintaining a healthy weight may not seem to be the regular trend. However, when you step into this whole segment inspired by fitness and health, ensuring you have enough muscle mass covering your build becomes of paramount importance.
So, how do you gain muscle mass? If given a list, of course, food comes top, closely followed by a workout routine tailored towards meeting your goals and supplements. Now amongst a handful of supplements that aim to increase muscle mass, mass gainer seems to be the most popular option, whether it is for recreational gym-goers or professional athletes.
Now, what is a mass gainer? How does it work? What are the benefits of a mass gainer, and most importantly, who is a mass gainer for? If you have been seeking answers to these questions, this is the post for you.
What is a Mass Gainer?
A mass gainer is a fitness supplement that aims to add to the total muscle mass of the body, therefore also adding to the total weight. A mass gainer is very high in calories, aiming to increase your daily caloric intake to create a calorie surplus, and therefore intend to help the individual gain mass.
A mass gainer is loaded with carbs, and protein, while it can also provide you with a small amount of fat, most of which comes from dietary fat. A mass gainer can also include vitamins and minerals, alongside digestive enzymes.
How does a Mass Gainer work?
The maths is simple: best mass gainer provide you with more calories than your metabolism can burn away.
For someone who works out to build a lean muscular physique, their metabolism would obviously burn more than it should on a normal basis. Now, if they don’t preserve the calories or up their caloric intake, they will end up losing mass instead of gaining some.
Mass Gainers avoid that from happening. By meeting the caloric requirements of the body, mass gainers give the metabolism enough to burn away and the body enough to preserve in the form of mass (and some amount of fat). These calories that get stacked in your body lead to mass gain, and that, in gist, is how mass gainers work.
Benefits of Mass Gainer
Mass Gainers are not all about mass gain, and they offer much more than what meets the eye. Below we’ve discussed the benefits of mass gainers, besides adding to the muscle mass and helping muscle gain:
● Meets extreme caloric requirements:
Mass gainers are mostly about calories and calorie surplus. Calorie surplus leads to mass or weight gain, and a mass gainer helps create the calorie surplus. If you’re someone who has a goal of consuming more calories than you usually do, mass gainers can easily meet your requirements in just 1-2 servings every day.
● Meets your creatine goals
Anyone who is looking to buff up and put on some significant amount of mass after having done some research must have come across the term ‘creatine’. Without getting into detailing, creatine is one compound that can not only add to muscle mass but also greatly enhance performance.
Numerous mass gainers contain creatine, which means, if you’re choosing a mass gainer with creatine, you are killing a few too many birds with one stone. Since creatine works at its best efficacy with quick-acting carbs, mass gainers make for its perfect BFFs with the high amount of quick-acting carbs that they contain.
● Supports repair and recovery
Many mass gainers contain ingredients that aid the repair and recovery of worn and torn muscles. Mass gainers, mostly those that come as a post-workout supplement, contain L-Glutamine that aids faster repair and recovery.
● It helps maintain a lean build.
If you haven’t cracked it yet, mass gainers do contain fat. However, it’s mostly dietary fat that is good for keeping you in shape, unlike saturated fat. Many mass gainers contain MCT and scarce saturated fat that ensures that calorie deposition is in the form of muscle mass and not fat (given that you work out too).
Mass gainers also prevent you from ‘dirty bulking’, meaning obtaining calories from sources that may not be good for your health or fitness goals.
● It can also contain vitamins and digestive enzymes
Aforementioned, not all mass gainers are the same. The difference is in the detailing. If you also want your supplement to provide you with essential vitamins that can rev up your immunity and improve your performance, you should opt for a mass gainer that contains both vitamins and enzymes.
Who should use a Mass Gainer?
Many people overestimate their caloric requirements, therefore assuming they need a mass gainer to gain mass. However, a mass gainer is not for everyone; below, we have discussed who should (and why they should) consume mass gainer:
● Ectomorphs or Hardgainers
The problem with ectomorphs or hard gainers is that they can not walk their way through a weight gain journey with food alone for multiple reasons.
For starters, a brisk metabolism burns away all the food, which in turn translates to the fact that it mostly never adds to their weight.
With a mass gainer, a hardgainer’s metabolism could not burn away the excess calories the individual is loading on, therefore aiding weight gain, mostly in terms of mass.
● People with a poor appetite
A poor appetite is possibly the arch-nemesis to mass gain or weight gain, in general. With a natural aversion to food, gaining mass can seem like a tough nut to crack.
Myriad mass gainers come as meal replacements, and although we do not fully advocate the idea of replacing your natural meal with a supplement completely, it can still come off as a saviour for someone who does not have a great appetite.
● Individuals looking to gain mass faster.
Gaining mass is a lengthy process that incorporates in itself perseverance and persistence. Apart from a consistent workout routine that you follow deliberately and a proper meal plan (both of which are equally important in mass gain), a mass gainer can help accelerate the process of mass gain.
However, you need to understand that it is only a supplement and not an edible elixir, and mass gain does not take place overnight. So, as long as you have realistic expectations from your mass gainer whilst doing your part, a mass gainer will definitely catalyse the whole process.
● Individuals looking for faster repair and recovery
As mentioned before, mass gainers, especially those containing L-Glutamine, induce faster repair and recovery in people following a gruelling workout session.
Mass gainers can be a great supplement to increase muscle mass. However, you need to keep in mind that nothing can beat a well-balanced diet and regular training. Mass gainers can easily meet your caloric requirements with the excessive amount of carbs included; therefore, sweating it out at the gym while following a proper meal plan and supplementing it with a mass gainer can bring with its effective results.