Bodybuilders eat all sorts of food to gain muscle and build body mass. Pop Tarts by Kellogg’s is one such food item that bodybuilders love to eat. Kellogg’s company was founded back in the 1960s and sells more than 2 billion of these pastries every year.
This food item is not only popular in the United States but people, from the United Kingdom, Finland, Canada, and Ireland, with bodybuilding passion also consume them. Let’s discuss everything you need to know about Pop Tarts and whether or not they are good for bulking.
What Are Pop Tarts?
Pop Tarts are popular toaster pastries manufactured by Kellogg’s and they offer a delicious taste. They’re loaded with calories and carbohydrates that provide you with an energy kick that you need before a workout session.
Pop Tarts come with a couple of thin pastry crust layers filled with sugar. They’re also frosted and you can use them as a pre-or post-workout snack. You can also heat them using your toaster if you like to eat them warm.
Are Pop Tarts Good for Bodybuilders?
Pop Tarts don’t make for a staple food item for bodybuilders. However, a large number of bodybuilders eat these pastries because they are a great source of carbohydrates and calories. On top of that, they’re affordable, properly packaged, and ready to eat.
They can help people a great deal who are focusing on building body mass and muscles. Protein and calorie intake are critically important to gain muscles and improve body mass. Usually, foods that are low in calories and allow people to lose weight are considered healthy.
However, that’s not the case with bodybuilders as they need to eat high protein and calorie food to gain the energy needed to perform intense exercise. Pop Tarts are not a good source of protein but they are loaded with calories. Bodybuilders also eat them before competitions and events in order to maximize vascularity.
Pop Tart Nutritional Profile
As mentioned, Pop Tarts don’t come with a high protein content. A 50-gram serving or one Pop Tart Pastry yields just two grams of protein. It means that bodybuilders will need to eat other foods that are high in protein as well.
The following is the complete nutritional profile of Pop Tarts that you should know if you’re planning to include in your diet plant.
50 grams or one Pop Tart pastry offers:
- Calories: 200
- Total Carbohydrates: 38 to 42 grams (about 13 percent)
- Saturated Fat: 1.5 grams
- Monounsaturated Fat: 1 gram (or slightly above)
- Polyunsaturated Fat: 2 grams (or slightly above)
- Trans Fat: 0 grams
- Total Fat: 5 grams
- Sodium: 170 milligrams (7 percent)
- Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
- Sugars: 17 grams
- Protein: 2 grams
- Dietary Fiber: Less than 1 gram
The Impact of Pop Tarts on Body Mass and Muscle Gain
If you’re a bodybuilder you would already know that training and exercise play a key role in the depletion of glycogen levels in the body. Glycogen or broken-down carbs are naturally stored in body tissues, muscles, and within the liver.
A bodybuilder needs to consume carbohydrates to fill these glycogen stores. Better yet, carbohydrates are also a critically important part of the entire bodybuilding process as they provide the body with the needed energy to perform the exercise.
Bodybuilding is a very stressful process for the human body. During the workout process, the body releases an external stressor called cortisol. It increases the glucose levels in your blood and improves the brain function to utilize sugars to repair tissues. It also regulates harmful or non-essential functions in fight or flight situations.
It’s a stress response system of the human body that’s naturally self-limiting and returns to normal after the workout process. However, due to excessive exercise and intense workout routines, stressors can remain in your bloodstream all the time.
Resultantly, the fight or flight reaction remains active as you constantly feel under attack. The long-term activation of cortisol can lead to many health problems including depression, anxiety, upset digestive system, sleep problems, and headaches.
That’s why bodybuilders need to adjust their diet plans to control cortisol by increasing their insulin levels. The increased levels of insulin decrease the cortisol levels and the easiest way to achieve that is to consume more carbohydrates.
That’s where Pop Tarts come into play as they’re simply sugars made of different dextrose forms including corn syrup, fructose, and sucrose. They are also low in fat and work well for both pre- and post-workout processes.
Related: Are burgers good for bulking?
Benefits of Eating Pop Tarts for Bodybuilders
Eating pop tarts can be helpful to bodybuilders as they offer some unique benefits. After all, there is a reason why they have become the most popular breakfast cereals for the nation.
- Offer extremely low-fat content.
- Suitable for both pre- and post-work processes and make for an excellent energy source.
- Come with an affordable price tag so that anyone can eat them.
- Contain a lot of sugar and stay for a longer period of time in the stomach, which means they can also work as bread.
- Provide energy for longer workouts.
- Contain 2 grams of protein per snack.
- Come in a ready-to-eat form, and you don’t need to cook them before eating.
- A wide range of different flavors is available.
It’s important to note that Pop Tart should be consumed as a snack. They’re ideal to improve insulin levels in your body but you should not consider them complete and balanced food and avoid eating them on a daily basis.
Related: Eating Nuts for Bulking
Downsides of Eating Pop Tarts
Pop Tarts can be bad for your health as they are considered junk food. As mentioned earlier, they are high in sugar and low in protein. The fiber content in this food is also very low as compared to many other types of commercially available breakfast cereal.
They contain different types of oils such as palm and soybean oil and refined flour that can be very harmful and lead to several health problems. The following are some of the reasons why these pastries can be bad for you.
- Nutritional value if not impressive
- Contain higher levels of fructose than average cereals and can lead to type 2 diabetes.
- Bodybuilders tend to eat a lot of food at night before going to bed and Pop Tarts can be addictive.
- Come with a high refined sugar content more than the daily recommended amount of sugar.
- Not a good food source for people who are trying to lose some kilos.
- Pop Tarts are high in sodium, also known as salt, and eating them regularly can clog up your arteries.
Pop Tarts Ingredients
You’ll be surprised to know that these small pastries are made of more than 30 different types of ingredients and not all of them are healthy. They contain enriched flour that’s made by removing the natural vitamins and minerals. This ingredient is used to increase the shelf-life of Pop Tarts. However, it adds a lot of sugar to your bloodstream that can cause type 2 diabetes.
Other main ingredients include high fructose corn syrup, dextrose, cracker meal, wheat starch, sugar, leavening, and citric acid. These pastries also contain artificial coloring and several additives including Red 40 Lake, and Yellow 6.
Yellow 6 is a dye made from coal tar and it can lead to several health issues such as skin rash, hives, headaches, and exacerbation of asthma. That’s why it’s important to eat this food in moderation.
Do Pop Tarts Help in Building Muscle?
If you want to add more calories to your diet to gain muscle, Pop Tarts make for an easy choice. They’re loaded with a lot of calories and can help your body to build mass and recover quickly after working out. However, you should not eat this food regularly, especially if you are on your off days.
What’s the Most Popular Pop Tart Flavor?
Frosted Brown Sugar Cinnamon and Frosted Strawberry are the most popular and best-selling Pop Tarts of all time. Both of these flavors are readily available and you can buy them from pretty much any superstore. According to HuffPost, Frosted Brown Sugar Cinnamon offers a better taste than Frosted Strawberry.
What is the Best Way to Eat Pop Tarts?
Probably, the best thing about Pop Tarts is that you can eat them straight from their packaging as they are already baked. It comes in handy if you don’t have the time to heat them. However, they are designed to be warmed in any toaster and you can follow the same if you like to eat them hot. You can also freeze these pastries if you want to eat them later.
Regardless of the nutritional value of Pop Tarts, one thing that is certain is that you’ll finish a pack of two pastries right after opening it. They’re delicious and can be helpful to bodybuilders.
However, we recommend you not eat this food excessively. Ideally, you should eat this fast food once in a while before or after working out when you need the energy to perform an intense exercise and to recover quickly.