What to eat after a workout?
Knowing what and when to eat makes a lot of difference in your life and workouts. You need to understand the relationship between exercising and eating. Knowing what to eat after a workout is very important or else things might go wrong for your body. Exercising and Eating are the sides of one coin. Read this article to know how to manage your post-workout nutrition.
Here are some of the foods that are recommended to be consumed as Post-workout Nutrition. You will get to know how they help your body and what are the benefits of consuming them. After an intense workout, your body requires the strength to recover that you get from eating the foods that are mentioned below. Let's have a look at them:
Working out leads to the breakdown of protein present in your muscles. The rate of the breakdown depends on the intensity and length of your exercises. Even professional athletes face this breakdown so it's a normal thing. Having the right amount of protein after you have finished working out provides your body with amino acids that it requires to rebuild and repair your lost proteins. Additionally, it provides you with the building blocks that your body requires to make new tissues for your muscles.
It's suggested that you eat 0.14 to 0.23 gms of protein depending on the per pound of your body weight that is .3 to .5 grams per kg. This should be consumed after a very small interval of finishing your workout. According to a study, consuming protein before or after you have finished your workout has the same effect on your hypertrophy, body composition changes and muscle strength.
Foods that should be consumed as post-workout nutrition that are rich in protein are :
- Protein Powder ( should be plant or animal-based)
- Greek Yoghurt
When you are working out the glycogen stores in your body. It is used as fuel while you exercise. The solution to recovering back your glycogen stores is to consume carbs. The speed at which the glycogen is utilized depends on the intensity of your exercise. For example, participating in some kind of sport uses more glycogen levels than any kind of resistance training. So if you like performing sports such as swimming, running etc you will have to eat more carbs than having to work out.
It is recommended to eat .5 to.7 gms of carbs depending on the per pound of your body weight that is 1.1 to 1.5 grams per kg. It should be consumed within half an hour of completing your workout so that your glycogen is properly re-synthesised.
Moreover, the secretion of insulin which is the promoter of the synthesis of glycogen is better invigorated when proteins and carbs are eaten together. Thus, consuming proteins and carbs together as post-workout nutrition will maximize glycogen and protein synthesis.
You should consume both carbs and protein in a ratio of 3 to 1. Eating a good amount of carbs so that your body can recover the glycogen stores is very vital for everyone who works out regularly like 2 times a day. In case you work once every two days the quantity of carbs is lessened.
Foods that should be consumed as post-workout nutrition that are rich in carbs are:
- Chocolate milk
- Sweet potatoes
Numerous individuals have a wrong view about consuming fats. They think that consuming fats after completing your workout slows the speed of digestion and represses the absorption of supplements in your body. It may have a role in slowing the absorption rate of the meal you consume after your workout but that does not mean it does not have any benefits. According to a study, whole milk showed great results in promoting the growth of muscles after you have completed your workout when compared to skim milk.
In another study, it was seen that consuming a meal high in fat as your after workout meal, the glycogen synthesis rate was not at all affected. But you should limit the fat and only consume the amount recommended. Having a little amount of fat in your post-workout meal is not going to have any adverse effects on your body.
Foods that should be consumed as post-workout nutrition that are rich in fats are:
Don't forget to hydrate
Don't forget to keep yourself hydrated. To be well-hydrated when you work out, here are some recommendations by the ACSM that you should follow:
- Drink about 2-3 cups of water that is about 473-710 ml, 2-3 hours prior to your plan to do your workout.
- Drink about half to one cup of water that is about 118-237 ml every 15-20 minutes while you are working out. This should be according to the weather and the size of your body.
- Drink about 2-3 cups of water that is about 473-710ml, after you have completed your workout for each pound or.5 kg of the weight lost during your workout.
What to avoid eating after a workout?
There are a number of foods that should be avoided:
- Sugary shakes - may contain artificial flavouring and bulking agents.
- Processed Energy bars - Contains artificial sweeteners.
- Salty Processed Foods - May have ingredients not suitable for a post-workout snack.
- Fried Food - May contain harmful trans-fat
- Caffeine - May cause dehydration
- Not Eating at all - Your exhausted body needs to be replenished. Not eating anything will be very harmful.
So now you know all things you need to care about when you are planning your workout. As said earlier, having the right eating habits is essential for carrying out any workout. Make sure to take the recommended intakes and not overeat. When trying something new, pay more attention to how your body reacts to it. So pay attention to yourself, your eating habits and stay fit!