Gaining muscle as a vegan isn't much different from gaining muscle as a non-vegan. In order to gain muscle you have to supply your body with enough calories and protein throughout your day. You actually need to eat more calories than your body needs, which will allow it to store the excess energy as weight (part of which will be muscle mass). If you have a high metabolism, your body is using more calories throughout the day than usual, so it requires that you eat even more to get into your calorie surplus. Also, if you are exercising frequently, your body uses even more calories.
Consuming enough protein is particularly important to sustain muscle gain. Pairing a protein supplement like Gainful with a regular program of weight training and exercise 3-4x per week is a great way to promote a healthy, gradual increase in muscle mass.
And, of course, the rest of your diet is extremely important! We're happy to give you a high calorie formula, but we still recommend getting most of your nutrition from your food (supplemented by protein powder). Remember that if you aren’t in the caloric surplus, weight gain will not occur.
Do your best to include fruits and vegetables, grains, lean protein foods, and dairy products. If you are finding it difficult to gain weight, you can include some more calorie-dense foods, nuts and seeds, peanut butter, avocados, plant oils etc. Try to eat very frequently throughout the day to help get all of the nutrition you need. Snack in between meals and before bed when you can. It’s tough to get all of your calories you need if you are just eating a couple meals a day – especially if you have a fast metabolism.
A great way to include your protein powder into your muscle building routine is to make smoothies with it. If you blend your personalized protein powder with nut butters, honey, and fruit you can make a really delicious smoothie while greatly increasing the calories, protein, and other nutrients added by the whole foods. A 1,000+ calorie smoothies sounds like a tall order, but is actually very easy to whip up. However, you shouldn't go overboard when packing on calories, as it can cause rapid and unhealthy weight gain (which in turn leads to adding unnecessary fat). Just a few hundred extra calories per day should lead to a gradual healthy weight gain of a couple pounds per month. Weight and muscle gain are very slow processes when done correctly.
If you'd like to get serious about a specific nutrition plan, reach out to your Registered Dietitian by logging into Gainful.com and navigating to the "My Dietitian" tab.