Last Updated on February 14, 2023 by Femniqe
Yes, it’s confusing.
One fitness Youtuber says you should be in a calorie surplus to grow glutes while another TikTok fitness influencer said she grew her glutes in a calorie deficit.
By the end of this guide, you’ll have a clear path on how to approach dieting for glute gains.
One camp believes that it is impossible to grow glutes while in a calorie deficit.
However, recent research(1) has shown that building muscle is stimulated by muscle protein synthesis, which is influenced by the amount of protein consumed and the type of glute training you’re doing.
So technically, building glutes while in a calorie deficit is possible if you are consuming a good amount of protein and consistently doing glute workout sequences.
But, you have to consume high-quality protein sources and to follow a strict diet over an extended period to achieve significant booty growth.
What’s A Calorie Surplus?
A calorie surplus occurs when you consume more calories (energy) than your body needs to maintain its current weight and energy levels.
This excess energy is then stored in the body as fat, leading to weight gain over time.
Ideally, glute gains not fat.
Why You Need Calorie Surplus To Grow Glutes Faster
It’s basic science, in order to grow your glutes, you need to engage in glute resistance training and get sufficient protein to build and repair glute muscle tissue.
However, to achieve significant booty growth, you also need to be in a calorie surplus.
Why? This is because your body requires energy to build new muscle tissue, and a surplus of calories provides the necessary energy to support this process.
Additionally, some of the excess calories will be stored in your muscles, contributing to their growth.
Can I Grow Glutes At Maintenance Calories?
Yes, you can but your gains will be slower.
Just in case you’re wondering, maintenance calories is consuming the same amount of calories that your body burns each day.
And this slow process annoys a lot of people, as they’re putting in a lot of work and not seeing the results as fast as they want.
That’s why we recommend to go in a slight calorie surplus of 100-300 on the maintenance calories while upping your protein intake for faster booty gains.
So, if you’re consuming maintenance calories, you’ll need to ensure that you’re getting enough protein and consistently doing glute targeting workouts to promote muscle growth.
So, Do I Have To Eat More To Grow Glutes?
If you’re trying to lose some body while growing your glutes you don’t necessarily have to eat more.
What you should focus on is consuming enough protein daily to promote muscle protein synthesis. The amount and quality of amino acids in the protein source are key factors that impact muscle protein synthesis.
Therefore, focusing on consuming high-quality protein sources throughout the day is very important to achieving optimal muscle growth in the glutes.
To achieve maximum protein synthesis, it is recommended to consume 3-4 grams of leucine.
Now if you want maximum results, you want to consume protein sources with the highest amount of leucine.
In this graph below, it shows the sources highest in leucine
Even if you consume a high quantity of protein from sources that are low in leucine, such as potato, hemp, quinoa, or wheat, it will not lead to optimal booty growth.
An interesting study(2) was conducted on a group of older women, where two groups were compared.
The first group consumed a milk protein beverage containing 30 grams of protein and 8.5 grams of leucine, while the second group consumed a milk and soy protein beverage with 15 grams of protein and 2.5 grams of leucine.
Both groups were engaged in resistance training for six days. After the study, it was found that the group consuming high leucine had a significant increase of 53% in muscle protein synthesis, whereas the control group (low leucine) experienced only a 13% increase.
This highlights the importance of consuming high-leucine protein sources to optimize glute growth.
A Sample Meal Plan To Grow Glutes
Here is an example of a one-week meal plan for a calorie surplus that includes alternating protein sources:
Breakfast: 3-egg omelette with spinach, mushroom, and feta cheese, served with 2 slices of whole-grain toast
Snack: Low-sugar greek yogurt with mixed berries and honey
Lunch: Grilled chicken breast with mixed veggies and quinoa
Snack: Handful of almonds and a pear
Dinner: Baked salmon with roasted asparagus and sweet potato
Breakfast: Greek yogurt with granola, sliced banana, and honey
Snack: Apple slices with peanut butter
Lunch: Boiled Lentil vegetable soup with a side salad
Snack: Roasted chickpeas with sea salt
Dinner: Grilled steak with roasted broccoli and a baked potato
Breakfast: Scrambled tofu with sautéed mushrooms and spinach, served with a slice of whole-grain toast
Snack: Cottage cheese with pineapple chunks
Lunch: Baked chicken thighs with roasted Brussels sprouts and wild rice
Snack: Carrots and hummus
Dinner: Grilled shrimp with mixed veggies and quinoa
Breakfast: Blueberry protein pancakes with Greek yogurt and honey
Snack: Orange slices with walnuts
Lunch: Tuna salad with some mixed greens and unsalted whole-grain crackers
Dinner: Grilled pork chops with mixed veggies and a baked sweet potato
Breakfast: Chia seed pudding with mixed berries and sliced almonds
Snack: Beef jerky
Lunch: Black bean burger with avocado and mixed veggies
Snack: Hard-boiled egg with a handful of cherry tomatoes
Dinner: Baked cod with sautéed kale and a baked potato
Breakfast: Breakfast burrito with scrambled eggs, black beans, salsa, and whole-grain tortilla
Snack: Apple slices with almond butter
Lunch: Grilled chicken thighs with mixed veggies and brown rice
Snack: Roasted pumpkin seeds
Dinner: Baked salmon with roasted asparagus and quinoa
Breakfast: Whole-grain waffles with sliced banana and maple syrup
Snack: Unsalted and sugar-free trail mix with nuts
Lunch: Lentil soup with mixed greens and whole-grain crackers
Snack: Greek yogurt with sliced peaches
Dinner: Grilled steak with roasted Brussels sprouts and a baked potato
Growing Glutes In A Calorie Deficit Is Possible
Although many people believe that a calorie surplus is necessary to build strong glutes, it is actually possible to achieve this while in a caloric deficit.
The key factor is ensuring that your diet includes a high amount of protein, particularly leucine.
Additionally, to promote hypertrophy and facilitate recovery, it is recommended to consume a BCAA drink along with fast-absorbing carbohydrates during and after workouts.
Adding this strategy into your routine will not only help maximize your glute gains but also enhance recovery, replenish glycogen stores, and facilitate progress in future workouts.