How to Eat Clean Like A Professional Bodybuilder

Having Eating Clean is One of the Most Impactful Things You Can do for Your Fitness.

Other than time spent working out in the gym, eating a healthy diet is the best way to promote your overall health and muscular conditioning. Supplements can be deceiving. Not to mention, many packaged foods at the supermarket are loaded with artificial colors and ingredients. Eating these can make you feel bloated and sluggish.

If you’re looking for inspiration on how to get started with clean, healthy eating that promotes fitness, look no further. We are going through a quick grocery list of 10 foods to help get you started with shopping and eating clean like a professional bodybuilder.

Why Eating Clean is Important

You can be eating the standard 2,000 calories a day, you can increase them, or decrease them, but you cannot outwork a bad diet. If you are filling your body with the wrong foods, the calories do not have the desired effects.

Eating healthy foods can do things to you like increase testosterone. This in turn can cause you to put on muscle faster, decrease inflammation, and increase sexual performance.

Getting your macros in with clean, healthy foods is what really will push your physique, strength, and performance to the next level.

10. Dark Leafy Greens

Dark green vegetables, such as kale, broccoli, collard greens, top super greens and spinach, are extremely nutrient-rich and low in calories. They act as a great supplement or base to a heartier plate of chicken or fish. These are probably the best natural source of things like vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, fiber, vitamin K, folic acid, and so many others vital multivitamins. It cannot be overstated what an essential source of nutrients greens are in your diet.

Pro Tip: Keep a bag of kale or a bag of broccoli in the fridge at all times. The kale makes a great base for a salad. The broccoli works great in a veggie stir fry. Or switch it up based on what you like!

9. Eggs

Eggs are a versatile. They are a protein-rich food that can be incorporated into almost any meal you could think to make, so start eating them!

Eggs are a bodybuilder’s staple for good reason. They pack a huge punch in terms of protein (which allows your body to build muscle) without having too many calories. They’re also a great option if you’re trying to avoid an unhealthy breakfast. Eggs are completely natural. There are no saturated fats or unhealthy additives to slow you down.

Pro Tip: Keep a carton of eggs in the fridge. You can have them for breakfast or add them to a shake for a quick protein boost.

8. Wild-Caught Fish (Salmon, Cod, Tuna)

Fish are an essential source of omega-3 fatty acids, and a core component of any pro’s diet. Fish that is caught in the wild tends to have the highest amount of omega-3s, so aim for eating that if possible. Salmon has a higher fat content than other types of fish and can help you feel fuller for longer. This could potentially fight off cravings, which could be good during a cut!

Pro Tip: Keep salmon, cod, or tuna in the fridge and have once a week. You can bake or pan-sear as an entree, have it over rice, or even put it in a salad.

7. Quinoa or Brown Rice

These grains (okay, quinoa isn’t technically a grain) make a great healthy base for a meal. They’re high in amino acids, which are essential for building muscle. If you like both, great, if not, you can easily substitute one for the other. These are also a versatile “building-block” type food like eggs that can easily be combined with other healthy foods for clean, healthy eating.

Pro Tip: Keep a bag of quinoa or brown rice in your pantry. You can have chicken or fish over rice or put the rice into a salad with leafy greens, the possibilities are endless.

6. Eating Chicken

Chicken is another bodybuilding essential. It has an astronomical protein-level for something with a comparatively low amount of fat. Again, the key here is to pick foods to eat that can help you avoid the additives, oils, and unhealthy fats associated with processed foods. Cooking your own chicken at home with vegetables, lentils, quinoa, or brown rice is a filling, protein-rich meal.

Pro Tip: Keep chicken in your fridge to have for dinner throughout the week. Combine with brown rice, collard greens, quinoa, or broccoli for a healthy dinner.

5. Dry Beans and Peas

Things like black beans, pinto beans, split peas, and lentils. They are all great additions to a bodybuilder’s diet. They’re easy to combine with a healthy source of protein like fish or chicken to create a meal. They’re also rich in iron and zinc, which can increase joint strength.

Pro Tip: Keep two bags of your favorite type of beans or peas in the pantry. They make a healthy, filling side in any meal that will keep you from snacking on unhealthier foods.

4. Greek Yogurt

An essential snack food for when you’re in-between meals. Eating a Greek yogurt is quick and easy. Greek yogurt is a healthy and filling option that promotes gut health and the absorption of other nutrients and minerals. Not to mention Greek yogurt is an essential source of protein.

Pro Tip: Keep a pack of your favorite Greek yogurt in the fridge for snacking. You can add honey or some walnuts to add flavor and texture.

3. Olive Oil, Avocado Oil (Oils > Butter)

Try to avoid butter, which is high in saturated fats, opt instead for cooking with olive oil, avocado oil, or another type of cooking oil.

Pro Tip: Keep your favorite type of cooking oil in the pantry instead of using butter to reduce saturated fat consumption.

2. Eating Fruits

There are a lot of different categories of fruit, but pretty much all of them are great for you. Apples, bananas, pears, and berries are high in natural sugars but ultimately much better for you than any artificially sweetened snack.

Pro Tip: Keep one or two types of your favorite fruits in the kitchen to snack on, use in a salad, or make a smoothie.

1. Whey Protein

Probably the most popular protein additive in the bodybuilding world. Whey Protein is clinically proven to increase gains and help the body develop muscle mass faster. It is a great way to hit your macros. A lot of protein powders are around 25g of protein, which is said to be the maximum amount the body can absorb in one sitting.

Pro Tip: Keep whey protein in the kitchen. You can add it to tea, water, or as part of a healthy smoothie.

Eating Wrap-Up

All in all, eating a healthy, balanced diet is ideal for the human body no matter what your goals are. Getting food from all different groups is what will keep you healthy, strong, and help you reach your goals a lot faster.


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021, May 16). Benefits of healthy eating. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Retrieved November 6, 2022, from (Source)

Wire, S. F. (2021, December 6). Junk food, poor diet significantly raises risk of low testosterone in men. Study Finds. Retrieved November 6, 2022, from (Source)

Austin Letorney
Austin Letorney is a writer, actor, and fitness enthusiast. As a former rower, he has shifted his focus to sharing his knowledge of the fitness world and strength sports with others.