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DEC 26, 2023

The Ultimate Guide to the Best Foods for Cutting in Bodybuilding


For bodybuilders it’s a constant back-and-forth between bulking and cutting. Well, let’s take some time to talk about cutting, and the foods that can help you.

Read time: 5 minutes

For bodybuilders it’s a constant back-and-forth between bulking and cutting. Well, let’s take some time to talk about cutting, and the foods that can help you. If you’re new to this, "cutting" is all about shedding excess fat while maintaining as much muscle mass as possible. But it's also a delicate balance that requires both rigorous exercise and a carefully curated diet to achieve that lean, chiseled physique.

Sesame Seed Oil: A Fat Oxidization Booster

What it is

Sesame seed oil, particularly its component sesamin, is a hidden gem in the cutting diet. Sesamin is a lignan found exclusively in sesame seeds that plays a significant role in reducing fat storage and boosting fat oxidization.

Why it's good for cutting

By accelerating the process of burning fat, sesamin can be immensely beneficial for those aiming to lose weight effectively during their cutting phase.

Kidney Beans: The Carb-Blocking Powerhouse

What it is

Kidney beans, especially white kidney beans, are packed with 2500 anti-amylase units per serving.

Why it's good for cutting

White kidney beans are known to block the absorption of carbohydrates, effectively reducing calorie intake and assisting in weight loss. This makes them an excellent addition to a cutting diet.

Green Tea: The Thermogenic Aid

What it is

Green tea isn’t just a soothing beverage, it's also a thermogenic agent. Which basically means it helps increase the body's temperature, thereby aiding in fat loss.

Why it's good for cutting

The natural properties of green tea enhance calorie burning, making it a staple in any cutting diet.

Leafy Green Vegetables: Fiber-Rich and Low in Calories

What it is

Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and Swiss chard are high in fiber and extremely low in calories.

Why it's good for cutting

Their high fiber content slows down the rate of absorption, providing a feeling of fullness with minimal caloric intake. This helps in controlling hunger and reducing overall calorie consumption.

Grapefruit: The Mysterious Fat Buster

What it is

Grapefruit has always been a part of weight loss conversations, and for good reason. While the exact mechanism is unclear, numerous studies associate it with weight loss.

Why it's good for cutting

Incorporating grapefruit into your diet can potentially aid in fat loss, though the exact reasons remain a fascinating mystery.

Turkey Breast: The Perfect Protein

What it is

Turkey breast is often hailed as one of the best sources of protein for those in a cutting phase due to its excellent protein-to-fat ratio.

Why it's good for cutting

It provides high-quality protein that's essential for muscle maintenance during a calorie deficit, without the added fat that comes with other protein sources.

Delicious Smoothie Recipes for Your Cutting Diet: Featuring Pears, Apples, and Grapefruits

Continuing our exploration of the best foods for cutting in bodybuilding, let’s blend some magic with smoothies! Incorporating fruits like pears, apples, and grapefruits into your smoothies can not only add great sweet flavors but also aid in your cutting phase. So, here are some refreshing and nutritious smoothie recipes to include in your diet:

Pear Power Protein Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe pear, cored and chopped
  • 1 scoop of vanilla whey protein
  • 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
  • A handful of spinach
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • Ice cubes

Method:

Blend the pear, protein powder, almond milk, spinach, and cinnamon together until smooth. Add ice cubes and blend again to reach your desired consistency. This smoothie combines the fiber-rich pear with protein, making it an ideal post-workout drink.

Apple Almond Delight

Ingredients:

  • 1 apple, cored and chopped
  • 1⁄2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • A pinch of nutmeg
  • Ice cubes

Method:

Combine the apple, Greek yogurt, almond butter, almond milk, and nutmeg in a blender. Blend until smooth, adding ice cubes for a chilled effect. This smoothie is perfect for a refreshing and filling snack, packed with protein and fiber.

Grapefruit Green Goodness

Ingredients:

  • 1⁄2 grapefruit, peeled and seeded
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1 cup of kale or spinach
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 cup coconut water
  • Ice cubes

Method:

Add the grapefruit, banana, greens, chia seeds, and coconut water into a blender. Blend until creamy. Add ice cubes for extra chillness. The grapefruit adds a tangy twist while chia seeds provide omega-3 fatty acids and additional fiber.

Pear-Apple Hydration Booster

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe pear, cored and chopped
  • 1 apple, cored and chopped
  • 1 cucumber, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon honey (optional)
  • 1 cup of water or green tea
  • Ice cubes

Method:

Blend the pear, apple, cucumber, and honey (if using) with water or green tea. Once smooth, add ice and blend again. This hydrating and detoxifying smoothie is great for a hot day or after a sweaty workout session.

Spicy Grapefruit Sunrise

Ingredients:

  • 1 grapefruit, peeled and seeded
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 1 inch of fresh ginger, peeled
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 cup of water or coconut water
  • Ice cubes

Method:

Combine the grapefruit, carrot, ginger, and turmeric in the blender with water or coconut water. Blend until smooth, then add ice and blend again. This smoothie is not only refreshing but also packed with anti-inflammatory benefits.

Integrating these smoothies into your cutting diet can bring a refreshing twist to your meal plan. They’re not just delicious, they’re also packed with nutrients that support weight loss and muscle maintenance. Always remember, a successful cutting phase is about balance – these smoothies should complement a well-rounded diet and consistent workout regimen.

Staying Safe

Consulting a nutritionist or a professional trainer can provide a personalized approach to ensure that you’re getting the right nutrients in the right quantities for your bodybuilding goals. But with that said, here's to achieving that lean, sculpted body you've been working towards!

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Written by Matthew Stogdon

Matt has been writing for two decades, across print and digital media. He is also an accomplished filmmaker, with several accolades under his belt.

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