10 Best Foods To Eat If You Want a Firmer Butt
The booty gets a love of love—if you're working out trying to firm it up, you're most likely doing a lot of different exercises to target those muscles. And we understand—a nice, strong, and firm butt can not only keep you healthy but help you best rock that pair of jeans, too. In order to tighten that tush the proper way, you need to nourish your muscles with the right set of muscle-building and bone-boosting nutrients, like lean protein, good fats, and complex carbohydrates.
And timing is critical too, as you need to make sure you eat within 30 minutes to an hour after a workout to replenish your lost electrolytes and repair damaged muscle. Some foods are surely better than others, so here are the best foods to grab throughout the day to get that tight bum that's perky and healthy! While you're at it, be sure to try out 21 Best Healthy Cooking Hacks of All Time.
The proteins and essential amino acids found in eggs are imperative for building, repairing, and sustaining strong muscles, which all go towards firming up that tush.
"Eggs are an excellent source of protein, considering just one egg contains about 7 grams of protein," says Ilyse Schapiro MS, RD, CDN. "[They're] also rich in healthy fats and fat and water-soluble vitamins, which can help to increase satiety and improve energy levels before getting into a workout."
Salmon contains a rich source of protein, like vitamin B12, and omega-3 fatty acids, which is great for repairing muscle damage after a lower-body workout.
"Omega-3's promote anti-inflammatory properties and may improve athletic performance by increasing endurance and alleviating muscle adaptation and muscle recovery," says Schapiro.
Enjoy it with quinoa to get that complex carbs fix.
Lentils are plant-based proteins that happen to be loaded with iron, folate, and fiber.
"Folate is needed for protein metabolism, and dietary iron can prevent iron-deficiency anemia and may improve or maintain training performance," says Schapiro. Plus, the soluble and insoluble fiber found in lentils can increase fullness, making it easier to stick to a healthy diet and see those awesome results in your butt.
"Calcium is a necessary mineral for a firmer butt as adequate amounts can increase bone mass, bone density, and bone size," says Schapiro. Plus, calcium helps lower the risk of osteoporosis, too.
Almond butter is a solid post-workout snack since it contains high amounts of plant protein, healthy fats, and antioxidants.
"In particular, vitamin E acts as an antioxidant and fights off free radicals that are produced during exercise," says Schapiro. So, a spoonful of almond butter after a strenuous booty workout can help your body adapt to a new exercise routine and prevent muscle damage.
"Edamame, tofu, and tempeh all provide soy protein, the plant-protein with the highest quality that has been considered the best alternative to whey protein for muscle protein growth," says Kelly Jones, MS, RD, CSSD, LDN. Add edamame to a stir-fry or grain bowl post-workout, or use tofu in a scramble.
While peas are great on their own, a serving will only provide 4-5 grams of protein. Pea protein isolate, on the other hand, can offer as much as you need to stimulate muscle growth.
"Recent studies have suggested pea protein isolate may be just as effective as whey protein, so if you're avoiding dairy, mix your pea protein isolate with some berries and almond milk for a post-workout shake," says Jones.
If you love cheese, you're in luck! You're going to want to opt for Parmigiano Reggiano.
"It may be pricier, but just one ounce offers 11 grams of muscle-building protein," says Jones. It makes for a great perfect post-workout snack when paired with some whole-grain crackers, carrots, and hummus to firm up that butt and speed muscle recovery.
Tuna is an easy option to have on hand that provides quality protein and a good dose of the amino acid leucine.
"Leucine is the amino acid thought to trigger the synthesis (or repair and growth) of muscle protein, so without enough, your gains may be limited," says Jones. Just choose chunk light tuna over albacore or yellowfin since the latter are high in mercury.
Peanuts are richer in protein than most nuts, and whether in their whole food or peanut butter form, they also provide healthy fats.
"Don't be afraid of the full-fat version as low intake of calories can limit your body's ability to use protein for muscle repair and healthy fat intake is important for regulating inflammation, which plays a role in muscle recovery," says Jones.
Now, it's time to get eating the right way to see those results in your bum that you've been working so hard toward!