Half a loaf of carb loaded bread cut into slices and the other half uncut on a cutting board with a knife

Do carbs effect muscle growth?

This is a fairly common question. I’ve been in the gym lifting weights for around 2 years. I’ve tried and I have failed with my diet many times and I,ve tried my best to document it on Way-up.blog. So, do carbs actually effect muscle growth?

What carbs do to your muscles

Carbohydrates are essential for your muscles. More specifically, glucose is essential for your muscles.

So, what is glucose? It’s in the carbs that you eat. It is a type of blood sugar. When you consume a carb, your body separates the glucose from the rest of the substance. It then transports the glucose through your blood stream and deposits it into your muscle cells.

The glucose then energizes your muscles. This enables them to contract (move). So, yes glucose is an important part of your diet.

Note: If your body consumes to much glucose, it doesn’t throw it away. It will actually be place it in the liver and muscles. When it’s stored it is then called glycogen.

Do carbs effect muscle growth?

So, now I have to answer the question that you came here to find out. Do carbs effect muscle growth? Yes, they do.

Let me answer this in detail. The body uses glucose (glycogen) for energy. Without this energy, your muscles tissues will not be able to break down and then repair themselves.

Without glucose in the body, it will break down muscle to use for energy. That’s the opposite that we are trying to achieve.

Scientific evidence

This study published by pubmed demonstrates in good detail how glucose affects muscle building. In this study 53 healthy males, aged between 60 and 10 years old, was examined. Each individual was sampled using nonprobability techniques at the start of the trail.

After examining all of the results and taking age and BMI into consideration, the result was that there was a significant difference in the people who had more glucose in their bloodstream. They had a higher muscle mass of 36.2453, their glucose level was 15.1493%. The glucose levels were not stated of the participants that didn’t have as much muscle mass, however, it was suggested that they were lower than these individuals.

So, in the results of this study, it was concluded that having more glucose in your bloodstream and muscles will encourage muscle growth after stimulating them.

So the idiots understand

To put this in a way that a child would understand. The people who had 15% of glucose in their body had a higher skeletal muscle mass of 36%. Yes, the people who consumed more glucose (carbs) had a higher muscle mass. So, we can conclude that carbs do effect muscle growth.

How many grams of carbs do you need

In order to build muscle, it is recommended that your diet consists of around %40 carbs. This works out at around 6-10 grams of carbohydrates per kg of body weight to build muscle.

You can get away with eating less than this. However, let this serve as a guideline when dieting .

Every individuals body is different, therefore it’s hard for me to give you an exact number. However, if you follow these guidelines you should be ok.

A good way to find out how many calories and grams of fat, carbs, and proteins is to use MyFitnessPal. Don’t worry, this is a free app that you download and then track your eating habits, carbs, and use to calculate your daily intake. This way you can find out how many carbs you need to cause and effect muscles growth.

What are the best foods to help you get your carbs in?
Keto friendly foods spread across a table with a label reading keto diet

We all know what a healthy diet is. It has been driven into our heads since we were children. But what are the best foods to help you get carbs in.

In my opinion, white rice is one of the best foods to help you get your carb count up for the day. Per table spoon of white rice you get 2.4 grams of carbs and 0.1 grams of fat with 0.2 grams of protein, and it only has 11 calories per table spoon. This is why I beleive in rice so much.

The second best food for carbs has to be porridge oats. This is a food that I’ve consumed every morning for years. Per table spoon of porridge oats, 1 mouth full, you get 2 grams of carbs, and around 0.3 grams of fat and proteins. This is a great food to get carbs from to cause and effect muscle growth.

The only negative point about this high carb food is that it’s not a great meal for dinner. It is certainly a breakfast food. I don’t know why but our body’s just don’t crave this food at dinner time. However, there’s no problem with throwing a few table spoons of oats into a protein shake when you come home from the gym.

Check out the post I wrote on the best healthy eating habits for teens.


So, the straight answer is yes, carbs do effect muscle growth. In order to make muscle growth efforts effective, you your diet should consist of roughly 40% carbohydrates. Hopefully you learned something new today.

Thanks for reading, stay strong, stay determined, and I’m sure I’ll see you again gym bros


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