Mass Gainer for Breakfast: Can you take before or after meal?


In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons of taking mass gainer as the first meal of your day.

A quick answer to your query: Yes! You can consume mass gainers as a high-calorie breakfast to fulfill your increased energy and nutrient requirements for building a heavier, muscular body.

However, these supplements are not a complete replacement for healthy breakfasts. The reason behind this and its solution are discussed in the following sections.

So, make sure you read till the end to find out the best breakfast for gaining mass;

Can I Eat Mass Gainer for Breakfast?

Yes, you can take mass gainers as the first meal of the day.  It will make up for a high-calorie meal, but there can also be some downsides.

Mass gainer bottle

Following are details of the different benefits and disadvantages of using gainers in the morning;

Benefits of Mass Gainer for Breakfast

As carbohydrates are the major ingredient of the mass gainers, using them is virtually equivalent to a high-carb meal. And high carb meals supply a lot of energy-rich molecules to your body, making you more active and energetic.

Resultantly, if you consume a high-carb mass gainer shake in the morning, you’ll have enough energy to keep you alert till lunchtime. This effect of a high-carb diet is also confirmed by research.

Furthermore, increased calorie count enables you to perform better during your workout session as your energy level is high, and your muscles are getting a constant supply of energy which helps them train harder.

Surprisingly, this strategy not only works for your morning exercises but persists all day long.

NIH confirms that a high-carb meal taken early in the morning improves your exercise performance, even during the evening workout sessions.

These powders contain 30 to 50 grams of protein per serving. This amount is enough to compensate for protein degradation in muscles, preventing mass muscle reduction.

In addition, L-glutamine and creatine amino acids increase protein synthesis and fiber elongation by making muscles use the nutrients more efficiently.

Despite these benefits, there can be some drawbacks of using mass gainers as breakfast, as listed below;

Drawbacks of Mass Gainer for Breakfast

Regarding drawbacks, gut discomfort is the complaint we often hear from people who use mass gainers shakes for breakfasts.

However, looking deeper, we found that it eventually comes down to the product and dosage, as people who report bloating usually consume a high-calorie serving (1000 calories or more).

To help with this, you can take a smaller serving instead, providing about 500 to 600 calories.

When you take such a high amount of fast-absorbing nutrients in one go, you overload your gut and may feel stuffed for a while.

Others who experience cramps and nausea are often lactose or gluten intolerant persons troubled by their supplement’s whey or soy ingredients.

Switching to a product that includes enzymes like lactase and amylase or to gluten-free, vegan supplements usually resolves the issue for these people.

Except for these few cases, taking mass gainer in the morning is generally safe.

However, it is not recommended to entirely replace your breakfast with a mass gainer shake as alone supplements would not provide an adequate amount of fiber and micronutrients (minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins).

Instead, it is better to take it 2-3 days a week or combine a small serving of gainer with a regular, solid breakfast. Doing so will ensure that you are getting all the necessary macro and micronutrients in your diet.

Up next, we are sharing how you can make the perfect breakfasts to help to gain muscles easy and fast;

What is the best breakfast for weight gain?

As we just discussed, having some real food is necessary for good health. Plus, you may not want to start your day off with a bland-tasting shake.

No worries, though. We have some useful tips for making your breakfast calorie-rich and delicious without using mass gainers.

So, try adding the following nutrients to your morning meals to increase lean mass.

1. Low-glycemic carbs

Carbohydrates are an essential part of breakfast because, after a 9-hour break from eating, your body is essentially craving energy-rich foods, and carbohydrates are the best fit here.

But not all carbs are the same. They have different glycemic indexes.

The high glycemic index carbs quickly break down into simpler components, releasing glucose molecules into the blood. Hence, they increase the blood sugar level pretty quickly.

Conversely, low-glycemic carbs are slowly converted into subunits and provide a gradual supply of glucose. Low GI carbs are considered healthier, as they provide energy but don’t cause sudden gluco spikes.

You can get low glycemic carbs from:

  • Fruits and cereals
  • Beans and lentils
  • Milk and curd

2. Protein

If you are into muscle building, you should have heard this a hundred times. But it is worth re-mentioning.

If you want to bulk up, take more proteins because your body needs them to build muscles.

A high protein diet provides muscle tissue with all the raw material they need for recovery and growth.

Hence, make sure you add a good amount of protein to your breakfast because it is when your tissues are hungry for food and absorb the nutrients more efficiently.

Common protein sources are;

  • Meat, poultry, and fish
  • Milk, yogurt, and cheese
  • Lentils, chickpeas, and beans

3. Omega-3s

Though fats have a bad reputation, not all are unhealthy and harmful. In fact, our body tissues need a certain amount of good fats to grow and function normally.

Omega-3 fats are one of these healthy fats that you need to optimize your gains. These fatty acids are found to synergize protein synthesis, increasing the speed of muscle fiber elongation and muscle recovery after endurance exercises.

A 2020 meta-analysis on omega-3 supplementation shows positive effects of these fatty acids for gaining muscle mass and improving cardio performance.

Omega-3 food sources are;

  • Fish and seafood (salmon, tuna, herring, oysters, etc.)
  • Seeds and nuts (flaxseed, chia seeds, hemp seeds)
  • Eggs
  • Fruits (berries, mangoes, avocado, muskmelon, etc.)

4. Growth boosters

Besides macronutrients like carbs, proteins, and fats, optimal muscle growth also requires micronutrients like vitamins and minerals. For instance;

  • Vitamin D influences the metabolism and mitochondrial processes of muscle fiber. Its deficiency leads to muscle mass and strength reduction.
  • Vitamin B3 is involved in protein synthesis and muscle growth.
  • Potassium and magnesium take part in metabolic processes and energy extraction in muscles. Hence, these are required for muscle functioning as well as growth.
  • Zinc influences growth-causing hormones, especially testosterone levels in the body. Iron does not affect growth, but its absence leads to decreased energy supply to muscles.

You can add these food items to your breakfasts to obtain these vitamins and minerals;

  • Green leafy vegetables, kale, broccoli, etc.
  • Banana, berries, avocado, mushrooms, Pineapple, etc.
  • Dried fruits and nuts like cashew, almond, peanut, etc.

Nutrient-rich breakfast recipe ideas

To help you get started, here are some delectable and nutrient-rich breakfast recipe ideas for you to put on weight

1. Smoked salmon egg muffins with Spinach

This filling recipe mixes greens, eggs, and fish meat, providing you with iron, proteins, and omega-3s in one bowel. It provides 626 kcal per serving.

Ingredients:

  • 300g spinach
  • 4 slices of smoked salmon
  • 25g butter
  • 2 muffins
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar

Hollandaise Glaze Sauce Ingredients:

  • 140g melted butter
  • 2 egg yolks
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • Pinch cayenne pepper

Preparation:

  • To prepare the glaze, take a pan filled with hot water and place a bowl in it. In this bowl, add 2 tablespoons of hot water and the egg yolks and whisk it.
  • Add melted butter and lemon juice, then whisk again. Top with cayenne pepper and keep it aside.
  • Take a pan and heat the water with vinegar, then for 2 minutes, poach the eggs. Use a slotted spoon to place the eggs in cold water.
  • Fry the spinach with butter.
  • Place the muffins on a roasting tray and toast them. Butter them and top them with smoked salmons.
  • Place the eggs in the center of the muffin, then place spinach and add sauce. Now grill the muffins again for 1 min and serve.

2. Savory Breakfast Salad

This salad recipe is a high-calorie vegan breakfast. Its single serving has about 523 kcal.

Furthermore, it is a balanced meal offering carbs from potatoes, good fats from avocado, proteins from hummus, iron from leafy greens, and omega-3s from hemp seeds.

Ingredients:

  • 2 sweet potatoes (small)
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 pinch pepper
  • 1 tablespoon coconut or avocado oil
  • A handful of chopped parsley
  • 2 tablespoon hemp seeds
  • 4 tablespoon hummus
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 chopped avocado
  • 4 cups leafy greens

Preparation:

  • Heat the skillet and add oil, potatoes, salt, and pepper.
  • Cover it with a lid and flip the potatoes every 4-5 minutes. Cook for 10-15 minutes.
  • Mix and shake olive oil, salt, pepper, and lemon juice to prepare the topping.
  • Place the leafy greens, roasted potatoes, avocado, blueberries, hemp seeds, hummus, and parsley on the plates and serve with dressing.

3. Poached egg Buddha bowls

These bowls are full of nutrition and taste. With 526 calories in each serving, this recipe would also give you a perfect balance of all food groups, including veggies, fruits, eggs, and dairy.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ cup wheat berries
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ cup ricotta cheese
  • 2 tablespoons Greek olives
  • ½ cup cherry tomatoes

Preparation:

  • Take a saucepan and add wheat berries with 2-1/2 cup water. Bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it tender slowly.
  • After 1 hour, drain and cool it down.
  • Take ½ cup of water and add an egg to it. Cover the cup and place it into the microwave for 1 min.
  • Cook it for 10 sec and let it stand for 1 minute.
  • Add mint, lemon juice, oil, pepper, and salt to a bowl. Stir them to mix well and put in two bowls.
  • Add 1 poached egg to each of these bowls and top it with olives, ricotta cheese, tomatoes, and pepper.

4. Coconut milk chia pudding

This pudding is a sweet but nutritious breakfast. You will get 617 kcal from this creamy dessert.

Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoon coconut cream
  • 1 cup coconut cream
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoon shredded coconut (unsweetened)
  • 4 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preparation:

  • Take a bowl and mix all the ingredients.
  • Cover the pudding and place it in the refrigerator.
  • After 2 hours, take the pudding and put it into 2 cups.
  • You can also top it with shredded coconut and berries.

5. Cassava flour waffles

If you want a classic sweet and high-carb dish for your breakfast, these waffles would make a good fit.

Each waffle contains 724 kcal, and you can top it with maple sauce, honey, or barriers to add on some calories and micronutrient benefits, making it an ideal high-calorie breakfast for bodybuilding.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cassava flour
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoon butter (melted)
  • 1 ¼ cups coconut milk (canned)
  • Nonstick spray

Preparation:

  • Mix all the ingredients and stir them well.
  • Turn on the waffle maker and spray it.
  • Put the batter in the waffle maker and cook until it becomes crispy and golden.
  • After three minutes, remove the waffles and serve.

FAQs on drinking mass gainer for breakfast

Can mass gainer substitute a meal?

Maybe, maybe not. It largely depends on the formulation of each mass gainer product.

Most gaining supplements do not contain micronutrients required for many metabolic functions. Hence, meal replacement with such products is not an ideal scenario.

However, you can add some fruits to your mass gainer shakes to turn them into a good meal replacement, but again, do not replace all of your meals with supplements.

How does mass gainer work in the body?

Mass gainers help you gain weight faster as they provide a lot of calories to the body in the form of energy-rich carbs and growth-promoting fats. Plus, these products have high protein content, making muscles grow larger and stronger.

When to take mass gainer?

It is best to take mass gainer a short time after your workout session because, at that time, your muscles are recovering and need energy and proteins.

Besides that, mass gainers can be used before bed, breakfast, or in between meals.

Can I take mass gainer on an empty stomach?

Yes, you can consume mass gainers on an empty stomach. After a full night’s sleep, your body craves food because you haven’t eaten something for about 8-9 hours, and most of the nutrients you take in dinner are consumed.

Is it better to take mass gainer in the morning or at night?

There is not much difference in the efficacy of mass gainers if you take them in the morning or at night.

However, if your gainer contains low GI carbs or caffeine, consuming it before bed may make falling asleep difficult.

Conclusion

Mass gainers are an instant source of energy-rich ingredients. Thus, it can serve as a good breakfast in your high-calorie diet plan for gaining.

However, relying solely on a mass gainer shake every day is not a good idea. Rather you should have regular meals on most days and take the gainer 2 or 3 days a week.

With a “food first” approach, you will get all important nutrients for growth from food and obtain the calorie surplus from your gainer shakes. Hence, your body would get everything needed to put on weight and become more muscular.

Baiza Batool

Baiza Batool is a fitness enthusiast and clinical psychologist who believes that mental wellness is essential for attaining physical well-being. She has knowledge of human physiology, psyche, and how they interact with one another to hinder or help the process of achieving your fitness goals. Baiza wants to use her research and writing skills to sum up all the information she shares on her blog in order to make it easier for others who are looking for help.

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