What Are the Best Recovery Foods to Eat After a Workout?
To recover after working out, getting enough rest and staying hydrated are key habits to have, but they’re not enough. You also need to watch what you eat in order to effectively help your body recover and start your next FizzUp workout at the top of your game.
CHANGING YOUR DIET TO EAT THE BEST RECOVERY FOODS AFTER YOUR WORKOUT
Exercise automatically ups your body’s needs. When you do your FizzUp workout, you tap into your carbohydrate stores, because since muscle fibers mainly use glucose as their energy source. So replenishing your muscles’ energy stores is crucial. Bananas, dates, smoothies made with fresh fruit or even a slice of bread with honey will do the trick.
You also consume amino acids, which make up proteins. If your workout is less intense, you then have to rely on fats to give your body the energy it needs. Only a healthy diet can replenish your stores.
Sweating during a FizzUp workout is a given. Water released in sweat includes salt, also known as sodium. As a result, you lose more potassium after you exercise. Sweat also contains iron, zinc, copper and magnesium. That’s why you need to make sure to eat a proper diet, so that you replenish your body with the nutrients it needs for healthy function. Lamb’s lettuce can also be a good source of iron, while wheat germ is high in zinc. Nuts such as almonds and walnuts replenish your body with magnesium. If you eat meat, cooked veal liver is a meal of choice when you need an intake of copper.
WHY PROTEINS ARE IMPORTANT
Proteins and biological macromolecules are essential to helping your muscles rebuild. They repair muscle tissue and help it grow. Your body can’t produce BCAAs, or branched-chain amino acids, on its own. You find them mainly in animal proteins such as meat, fish, crustaceans, eggs and dairy products such as cottage cheese. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to avoid red meat, as it’s higher in iron than other foods. We just recommend that you eat it only once a week.
Proteins are essential because they help carry oxygen in the bloodstream, which furthers muscular effort. If you’re a physically active vegetarian, don’t worry: BCAA-rich food supplements are proven to be remarkably effective after exercise. Grains, legumes and sprouted seeds are all foods that you should put on your plate to ensure optimal recovery.
Tips on the best recovery foods to eat after a workout
Knowing what your nutritional allies are after working out is a must if you want to be full of energy and prevent any prolonged sharp pain in your muscles.
- Tip #1: Have a filling snack right after your workout
If you’ve finished your workout and it’s not time to eat yet, the FizzUp trainer recommends eating solid foods that are sweet and alkaline-forming. You can make a sandwich with ham and cream cheese or have a bowl of sweetened yogurt, a healthy no-bake cookie made from oats (which are high in fiber), a fruit compote or whole fruit. A large handful of raisins, dates or some dried apricots are also healthy snacks to keep you full until your next meal.
- Tip #2: Eat a balanced meal
After exercise, you need to alkalize and rehydrate your body. A large bowl of stew with seasonal vegetables is an excellent compromise for healthy recovery and eating healthy when you sit down at the table, especially if you sprinkle it with a teaspoon of wheat germ: it contains sodium, vitamins and minerals… now that’s enough to give your entire body a boost! Next, the FizzUp trainer recommends serving this stew with homemade mashed potatoes or carrots. Dried vegetables such as lentils or navy beans (also known as haricot beans) are also a great way to help the body rebuild. FizzUp Nutrition* contains many recipes that you should make after exercise according to your fitness goal.
- Tip #3: Choose your ingredients wisely
For food lovers, a baked potato (also known as a jacket potato) sprinkled with a tablespoon of Greek yogurt and a bit of mixed herbs is also an interesting alternative as one of the best recovery foods to eat after a workout. You can also turn to the healthy fats by choosing an oily fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines or mackerel. This way, you’ll focus more on omega-3s, which are fatty acids that athletes all too often lack. Two tablespoons of virgin flaxseed oil (also known as linseed oil), olive oil, walnut oil or rapeseed oil can give your everyday dishes more flavor and give you extra benefits for your FizzUp workouts. We recommend nuts such as almonds or walnuts. They also work to speed up your recovery by giving you the intake of omega-3s that your body needs.
FizzUp tip: Avoid cold cuts, mayonnaise, cream and butter, which prevent your body from recovering properly after exercise. Go easy on the salt, too.
- Tip #4: Drink gradually and regularly
You can lose a lot of water through sweat during your workout. Muscle contractions produce heat, which also results in water consumption. Drink regularly before, during and after exercise, ideally within the hour just after your FizzUp workout. After this time, your carbohydrate and sodium stores are harder to replenish. You can make your own sweetened beverage using still water, honey or fruit syrup, which will boost effective hydration while allowing your body to recover after exercise. Preferably, drink water that’s high in sodium to reduce the amount of acid in your muscles and tendons. Remember to take sips of it until bedtime. If you notice that your urine isn’t clear at the end of the day, you should drink more water before going to bed. One trick is to put a glass of water on your nightstand so that you can keep yourself hydrated in case you wake up in the middle of the night.
FizzUp tip: To make your beverage more alkaline, add some lemon juice to your water. It will lower the natural acidity of your body.
With a balanced meal, your body will have no trouble recovering. Banish foods that are high in fat and sugar, because not only do they slow down your digestion, but also your recovery. After exercise, there’s an ideal period for optimal recovery called the “metabolic window”. This is the exact moment when you should give your body all the nutrients it needs, so you definitely shouldn’t give it a miss thanks to the trainer and FizzUp Nutrition*!
*FizzUp Premium feature