Are Fries Good for Bulking?

Fries are made of potatoes, which make for a great carbohydrate source. Carbs along with other nutrients present in potatoes provide you with the energy you need to perform intense workouts.

Potatoes are naturally very low in fat and protein and it’s important to pair them with foods that are rich in macronutrients to create a better meal for bulking.

The preparation and cooking method of potatoes greatly affect their nutritional profile.

Fries are not a good option for bulking. The traditional fries that you can buy from restaurants can be harmful to your health because of their poor nutritional value.

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Raw Potatoes Vs Fries: Nutritional Values

The following table compares the nutritional value of 100-gram raw potato and fries.

NutrientRaw PotatoesFries
Calories69196
Carbs14.2 grams18.5
Protein2.2 grams1.9 grams
Fat0.3 grams13.1 grams

As you can see, fries come with very high-fat content and calorie count. While the amount of carbohydrates is higher, which is good for bulking, the higher amount of fat and calories can ruin your bodybuilding experience.

However, if you like to eat fries, you can use different ingredients to fry them to keep the final product healthy and suitable for bulking. You can buy raw potatoes from the market and fry them using olive oil instead of traditional vegetable ones.

It’ll allow you to avoid additives that traditional fries offer including poor-quality fats, cheap flour, and unhealthy oil. The following is the nutritional profile of simple fries fried in sea salt and olive oil.

Calories: 154

Carbs: 22.6

Protein: 2.4 grams

Fat: 5.4 grams

The figures discussed above show that fried made in olive oil and sea salt offers way fewer calories and less fat than regular fries. Not only will it support your bulking goals but it’ll also protect you from health issues such as lowered immunity, poor cardiovascular health, and upset stomach, associated with regular fries.

What Type of Potato Should You Use?

The type of potato you use to make your fries also makes a lot of difference. There are many different types of potatoes available that you can buy from any grocery store. We recommend you use sweet and white potatoes for this purpose.

You can use both purple, Japanese, orange sweet potatoes, and white potatoes including baking, russet, and Yukon gold. Not only these types will offer you delicious fries but they’ll also be rich in healthy nutrients.

The macronutrients that both white and sweet potatoes offer are pretty much identical except carbs and fiber. Sweet potatoes have 2 grams more carbs per 100 grams than white ones. The difference in fiber content is even more pronounced where sweet potatoes have 3 grams of fiber and white ones offer 1.25 grams per 100 grams.

So, if you’re bulking, white potatoes will suit you better. That’s because they have a lower amount of fiber, which makes them easy to digest and produce energy quickly. On the other hand, you can eat fries made of sweet potatoes one to two hours before your workout session. The higher amount of carbs will provide you with more energy to perform an intense exercise for a longer time.

Eating Fries Before Workout

It’s important to eat food that offers carbs in a high amount. Your body will digest carbs and convert them to energy so that you can perform optimally during your workout session. It’s also important to choose a food source that’s low in fiber and fat because they can slow down your metabolism, delaying the energy available.

Eating fries made in olive oil are low in fats and offer a decent amount of carbs, making them a great pre-workout meal. Make sure that you use white potatoes and remove their skin to limit the fiber content. This way you’ll be ready to start your workout session after 30 to 60 minutes of eating fries.

How much fries you want to consume pre-workout depends upon the carb amount and calorie count your body needs. Ideally, you should consume 1 to 4 grams of carbohydrates per 2.2 pounds of your body weight in your pre-workout meal, especially if you’re bulking.

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Eating Fries After Workout

You can also eat healthy fries after a workout because your body again needs carbs to replenish the muscle energy. Carbs that you consume after a workout are converted into glucose, called glycogen. It helps your muscles to recover from the fatigued condition.

However, baking or boiling your white or sweet potatoes instead of frying them will be more beneficial for your body after a workout. Other than carbs, your body also needs protein post-workout to start muscle protein synthesis.

So, consider pairing your fried, baked, or boiled potatoes with a protein source such as fish or any other meat. It’ll accelerate the muscle rebuilding and repairing process, which is the key goal of bulking.

According to the Canadian Sport Institute, you should consume 1 to 1.2 grams of carbohydrates per 2.2 pounds of your body weight after a workout. It’s equal to about 450 grams of fries if your weight is around 150 pounds. In order to achieve the best results, make sure that you consume your post-workout meal within two hours of finishing your exercise.

Related: Should You Eat Burgers to Bulk?

Benefits of Eating Fries for Bulking

Keep in mind that your body will only benefit from fries if they’re made with healthy ingredients. Restaurant-bought fries are not only high in poor quality fat but they also don’t contain other healthy nutrients such as vitamins.

Fries are a Good Low-Fat Carb Source

Potatoes are basically made of carbs, which makes them a great food option for bulking. You can make healthy fries to consume before and after your workout sessions. Many good carb sources are also high in protein and fat, so creating a meal with a balanced ratio of macronutrients can be a little tricky.

Fries allow you to consume an extra amount of carbs without worrying about consuming additional fat or protein. It means you can perform optimally at the gym by including potatoes in your diet plan in any form including low-fat fries.

Fries are High in Potassium

Potassium is a healthy and important mineral, especially if you’re bulking. It regulates muscle function and if your body doesn’t have this mineral in a sufficient amount, you can suffer from cramping and muscle weakness.

To get the most out of your workout session, your body must have plenty of potassium. It also exists in your body through sweat and eating foods that are rich in potassium becomes even more important for bodybuilders.

Downsides of Eating Fries for Bulking

We can’t stress this enough that eating regular fries isn’t going to help you to achieve your bulking goals. In fact, it’ll affect your body negatively because of its high amount of low-quality fat. In addition, eating healthy fries also has some downsides including the following.

Low in Protein

Protein is by far the most important nutrient that your body needs to rebuild muscles. Without consuming the required amount of protein, the process of muscle recovery will not start after your workouts.  Fries aren’t a great protein source and that’s why you should pair them with food that offers lean protein.

High Glycemic Index

The glycemic index refers to the time your body takes to digest a particular type of food. The glycemic index of fries is lower than potatoes but it’s still not enough. Your body will digest them quickly and you won’t feel satiated for a long time.

It also means you’ll feel hungry quickly and eating more food will increase your calorie intake. While you can pair fried with food sources that are rich in fat and fiber, it’ll decrease your performance during the workout. So, the best strategy is to pair fries with other food sources after a workout to feel fuller for a longer period.

FAQs

Are Fries Good for Muscle Gain?

Fries can be good for muscle gain depending upon the type of potatoes and preparation method. Regular fries that you can buy from restaurants are high in fat and calories. They can reduce your workout performance and low-quality ingredients can also lead to health issues. That’s why you should eat healthy fries (made with olive oil) with low-fat content.

Are Fries Good After a Workout?

Yes, fries with low-fat content are good after a workout as they contain carbs in a decent amount. You can pair them with a food that offers lean protein to activate protein muscle synthesis to achieve the best muscle gaining results.

What Type of Potatoes Should You Use for Fries When Bulking?

If you’re bulking, you should use sweet and white potatoes as they’re rich in carbs. Use white potatoes to make fries for a pre-workout snack because they are low in fiber. You can go with sweet potatoes to make fries for a post-workout meal because they’re high in carbs.

Final Words

While fries are not the best food option for bulking, you can use them for this purpose if you like to eat them. But it’s important to make sure that you make your fries using olive oil instead of regular vegetable ones to minimize the fat content and calorie count.

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