It's important to remember that the purpose of any good workout is to build endurance, strength, and agility. To ensure the right results, one must focus on fueling right after the workout as well.
The aim for the right nutrition should ideally be muscle recovery, muscle growth, continued fat burning, and replenishing glycogen stores.
But did you know that your post-workout diet should depend on the activity performed?
While carbohydrates, protein, and fat are the three sources that provide energy, certain activities like cardio can lead to more water loss, and therefore its important to replenish this too.
Here are five things that you must include in your post workout diet:
It is essential to add foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids to your diet. Almonds, walnuts, seeds like pumpkin, melon, and flax are high in this. These foods are also rich in protein and fiber.
Exercise, especially the high-intensity ones, will lead to oxidation and foods high in omega-3 fatty acids will help the body reduce the oxidation and inflammation.
High-quality Protein Source:
People who go to the gym would agree that a protein meal helps in muscle recovery and growth. But not just gymming, any form of workout needs protein post the activity.
Eggs, chicken, quinoa, soy granules, tempeh, milk, and milk products are excellent protein sources post working out.
Complex carbs are present in foods like oats, millets, rice, or wheat. They are high in starch, fiber, B complex vitamins, and are also secondary protein sources.
When they are taken in combination with proteins, they “spare” the protein for muscle recovery and provide energy.
Certain foods when taken post-workout help in the performance and recovery of the body. These are known as ergonomic aids.
Beetroot is high in nitrates and will increase the oxygen uptake when take before or after workouts. Electrolyte drinks like coconut water are also useful post workouts.
Beta-alanine is present in non veg foods and helps in muscle recovery. Vitamin C present in citrus fruits helps in collagen synthesis.
It is extremely crucial to hydrate well after workouts, especially the high intense cardio ones. This will prevent cramping, tiredness, and fatigue in the day.
Taking plain water, lemon water, and apple cider vinegar with water are great ways to hydrate. Adding black salt to ensure electrolytes is also a good idea.
(Avanti Deshpande is a food science and nutrition expert with over 20 years of experience in the field. You can find her on Instagram at @nutritionist.avanti.)