Egg whites are an almost no-fat way to gain lean muscle and add essential nutrients like magnesium, niacin, potassium and sodium to your diet. Egg white protein is available at your local health food store in powdered form and comes in a variety of flavors. You can also purchase egg whites in liquid form at your local grocery store and prepare them in the same way you would cook whole eggs.
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Protein in Egg Whites
A large-size egg white contains approximately 3.5 g of protein and 0.6 g of fat, according to the USDA. If you're trying to gain weight, egg whites provide a perfect low-fat source. According to BodyBuilding.com, eggs are particularly easy to digest and can supplement other foods to add protein to you diet. Never eat raw egg whites, however, because they can contain bacteria such as salmonella that can make you ill.
How Much Protein Do You Need?
Depending on the intensity of the exercise you are doing, you probably need more than the recommended average 0.8 g of protein per kg of bodyweight. This is especially true if you're a hardgainer and struggle to gain lean muscle mass without losing weight. According to BodyBuilding.com, a 200 lb. male who is trying to gain muscle should consume at least 300 g of protein daily. In egg white terms, this is equivalent to about 60 eggs, which is not a realistic amount to consume daily. Fortunately, egg white protein also comes in portable versions.
Egg White Protein Powders and Bars
You can purchase egg white protein powder online or at your local health food store. These powders come in the popular flavors vanilla, chocolate and strawberry, as well as more novel flavors like cookies and cream. Pure egg white powder is also available, and contains nothing except dehydrated egg whites. You can add this powder to foods like yogurt or to protein shakes to add more protein.
Read Nutritional Labels
Whichever egg white protein you choose for weight gain, be sure to read the nutritional label first. Some egg white-based protein powders contain significant amounts of sugar, fat or artificial sweetener. Some people experience gastrointestinal problems when they consume large amounts of artificial sweetener. Additionally, consuming large amounts of sugar can deter your plans to gain weight because you may not be consuming enough protein calories. If you're concerned about the nutritional content of egg protein powders, consider creating your own protein shakes using egg whites (see Resources). By using a recipe, you have more control over what goes into your body.