Health, fitness and a great body is 80 percent diet and 20 percent exercise. That means that even if someone is hitting the gym five days per week and following a trainer-approved regimen, if they put in junk they’re still going to get out junk. For folks looking to add muscle and bulk, not just lose fat, their diet is extremely important. Here are 5 tips for a muscle-building diet that are all doctor and natural bodybuilder-approved.

1. Protein, Protein, Protein

Protein is essential for building muscle and there are no substitutes. A person should get an annual physical including blood work to determine any deficiencies and check cholesterol levels. Assuming cholesterol levels are adequate, there’s no reason to avoid red meat. In fact, in proportion (two or three times per week) studies show it can actually be beneficial.

2. Plenty of Greens, Fruits and Grains

The perfect meal includes protein, green leafy vegetables (preferably) and healthy complex carbs. Avoid junk food and count on berries or occasional fruits to qualify as desserts. Bananas, rich in potassium, are a good way to help the body recovery right after a workout. Blueberries are a superfood and known for their antioxidants. Get back to nature, and the muscles will start growing.

3. Add Creatine

A proper creatine regimen is natural and most people average a six percent increase in sheer muscle mass in the first few weeks. The first five days, consume five grams of creatine four times per day. Beginning on day six, switch to five grams once per day. Creatine doesn’t just build muscle and increase endurance–it also helps muscles recover more quickly and studies even show it improves brain function.

4. Eat Mini Meals

Instead of holding out for three meals per day, aim for five or six mini meals. The body doesn’t like being hungry or overstuffed. Instead, make it a goal to have the right amount of food in the body at all times. Eat within one hour of waking up, and avoid eating within three hours of going to sleep. Keep good snacks on hand, like kale chips or raw almonds.

5. Supplement the Diet

It’s nearly impossible to get all necessary nutrients from diet alone. Have a physician conduct a vitamin deficiency test and try to tackle any issues with diet. If that doesn’t work, consider adding vitamins. A muscle-bound body needs the right nutrition to thrive. Common deficiencies include calcium, Vitamin D and B vitamins.

Most people need to re-learn how to eat and how to read their body’s hunger cues. Visit this website for more information if you’re interested in getting back in shape. However, regularly reassess your health strategy and make sure you are constantly driving toward your goal of being healthy.