Did you know that eating the right nutrients after a workout is important? After your workout, our body tries to rebuild its glycogen stores and repair muscle proteins.
In fact, experts recommend eating your post-workout meal within 45 minutes.
It’s believed that the delay of carb consumption by as little as two hours after a workout may lead to as much as 50% lower rates of glycogen synthesis.
What to Eat After A Workout
The main goal of the post-workout meal is to supply your body with the right nutrients for quick recovery and to build up the benefits of your workout.
Therefore, choosing easily digested foods will promote faster nutrient absorption. The following lists contain examples of easily digested food that you can eat after a workout:
- Potatoes and corn
- Whole fruit and fruit juice (pineapple, berries, banana, kiwi)
- Milk, yogurt, and ice cream
- Bread, rice, crackers, and cereal
- Dark, leafy green vegetables
Your body’s glycogen is used as fuel during exercise, and consuming carbs after your workout helps restore them.
The rate of your glycogen stores depends on the activity that you did. Endurance sports cause your body to use more glycogen than resistance training.
So, if you’ll participate in endurance sports, you might need to consume more carbs than a bodybuilder.
- Dairy products (like milk), yogurt, and cheese
- Beans and legumes (such as lentils and chickpeas)
- Soy products (like tofu)
- Protein bar
Consuming an adequate amount of protein after a workout gives your body the amino acids it needs to rebuild these proteins.
Studies have shown that ingesting 20–40 grams of protein seems to maximize the body’s ability to recover after exercise
- Vegetable oils (olive oil, peanut oil)
- Peanut butter and almond butter
- Nuts (almonds, cashews, peanuts, pecans)
Others believe that eating fat after a workout slows down our digestion. But what you must know is that even if fat slows down the absorption of your post-workout meal, it will not reduce its benefits.
Besides, another study showed that even you’re ingesting a high-fat meal (45% energy from fat) after working out, muscle glycogen synthesis will not be affected.
Sample Post-Workout Meals
Now that you’re aware of the nutrients that your body need, it’s time to combine the items above and make quick and easy meals to eat after your workout:
- Egg omelet with avocado spread on toast
- Whole grain toast and almond butter
- Salmon with sweet potato
- Tuna salad sandwich on whole-grain bread
- Tuna and crackers
- Protein shake and banana
- Oatmeal, whey protein, banana, and almonds
- Rice crackers and peanut butter
- Grilled chicken with roasted vegetables
- Cereal and skim milk
- Greek yogurt, berries, and granola
- Multi-grain bread and raw peanuts
Our health is in our hands. It’s either we take care of ourselves now or we’ll risk our future. As the saying goes…
“To keep the body in good health is a duty… otherwise we shall not be able to keep our mind strong and clear. -Buddha”