An overall healthy body does not simply build itself in the gym; it is tailored in the confines of your kitchen. If you’re aiming for that summer physique to die for, it’s about not only how much you lift or how long you run but also what you eat. Simply choosing the right foods goes a long way to helping your body rebound from the physical wear and tear of exercise. Although there are many foods that work wonders for exercise recovery, the list presented here narrows it down to the ones that are arguably the quickest and most powerful.
Greek yogurt is one of the best alternatives to your everyday yogurt, simply because the strained Greek yogurt packs two times as much protein while only having half the sugar content of its regular counterpart. Along with its obvious benefits, it also provides you with a sufficient amount of calcium needed for bone structure. Greek yogurt also contains half the amount of sodium as regular yogurt, making it a dietitian’s favorite. Make sure to choose organic Greek yogurt from a trusted brand, as some companies may try to pass off products as “Greek yogurt” when in fact they are neither Greek nor actual yogurt.
This simple everyday component of your breakfast platter is a perfect complement to any post-workout meal. A single egg contains about 7 g of protein, making it a staple food for bodybuilders. Eggs also contain several nutrients such as vitamins E and A. They can be prepared in a wide variety of ways, and be included in a huge range of dishes. However, make sure to use olive oil, or another healthy cooking oil if you choose to fry your eggs.
Bananas are rich in potassium, which helps in reducing muscle cramps after your workout. In addition, they are also rich in dietary fiber that aids in your digestion. Moreover, you will love the sweet taste of the banana, knowing that it contains loads of water and minerals that your body craves. Despite its sweet taste, it boasts a realtively low glycemic index, and numerous studies have indicated its ability to assist in maintaining healthy blood pressure. Athletes, in particular, love the banana due to its easy availability and portability. With such benefits, it is little wonder why the banana is the most popular fruit in the world!
A bowl of fruit salad contains your choice of fruits and may include nuts, syrup, yogurt or other toppings. Many combinations of fruits are rich in the vitamins and fibers necessary for the growth and repair of tired muscles after your gym session. When choosing components for a fruit salad, opt for a variety of fruits and colors to add taste and widen the scope of nutrients. Just go easy on the sweeteners and yogurt, as overconsumption of sugar is a major factor in obesity, diabetes and many diseases.
Avocado shake with whey
Avocado has a bad rep for being a high-fat food. After all, a cup of avocados contains about 22 grams of fat, which makes up 82% of the calories contained in the fruit. Given the fact that it also has a high concentration of omega-6 fatty acids, some might this would be a fruit you would want exclude from your diet, but WHFoods.com notes that the ingesting fat with carotenoids helps in the overall absorption of the plant pigment, thus giving you more health benefits. It also has high dietary fiber content, and when paired with whey in a smoothie, makes for a sweet treat after sweating it out in the gym.
Blueberries are sought after for their signature taste and vibrant purple color, but this berry is much more than an addition to your next dessert. This amazing fruit provides you with loads of antioxidants needed to combat the free radicals that can cause so much harm. Blueberries store well in the fridge and have a low glycemic index, barely affecting your blood sugar levels. Toss a handful on your next dessert or include blueberries in your fruit salad for a sweet and tangy taste!
Try it once, and this egg-shaped fruit might become your next go-to food after your routine. It packs the enzyme actinidin to help in fast digestion, plenty of potassium to keep blood pressure in check and a healthy dose of vitamin C to boost your immunity. It is also rich in vitamin E, but has a low glycemic index, making it a good alternative to any processed dessert. Kiwi slices make an attractive and tasty addition to your fresh bowl of fruit salad, too.
Whole-grain pita and hummus
This Mediterranean flat bread, paired with the classic chickpea dip, is becoming an increasingly popular snack in the West, and it provides a substantial amount of protein. Opting for the whole-grain variety of pita with a side of hummus provides you with the fiber and nutrients necessary for muscle growth, along with protein to top it all off. It also contains folate, which is good for the digestive tract and can reduce the chances of colon cancer. The fact that hummus comes in a variety of flavors is an added bonus.
The tart taste of kefir should be a staple to your post-workout meal because of its probiotic bacteria which are good for your digestive tract. It also provides a healthy dose of protein and calcium, which aids in muscle and bone growth.
The sweet water of coconuts is a great source of electrolytes and minerals. It also contains bioactive enzymes to help with digestion and B-complex vitamins to replenish the body. It is a refreshing way to top off a day at the gym.