Post-Workout Nutrition (What & When to Eat)
Updated: Nov 24, 2022
Consuming the right nutrients after your exercise/training is just as important as what you eat before. During an exercise session, energy stores (glycogen) are depleted, muscle tissue is damaged, and fluids along with electrolytes are lost through sweat. So, what you eat really plays a huge role in your recovery time after workouts as well as your overall well-being.
A post-workout meal with both protein and carbs will enhance glycogen storage and muscle protein synthesis. Consuming a ratio of 3:1 (carbs to protein) is a practical way to achieve this.
So, in general the food you eat should:
1. Be rich in quality carbohydrate to replenish muscle fuel stores.
2. Contain some lean protein to promote muscle repair.
3. Include a source of fluid and electrolytes to rehydrate effectively.
The first 30-45 minutes after exercise provide an important opportunity for nutritional recovery due to factors like increased blood flow and insulin sensitivity, which boosts cellular glucose uptake and glycogen restoration. Research suggests that while protein synthesis persists for at least 48 hours after exercise, it’s most important to get post-workout nutrition immediately, and within 2 hours afterwards.
Additionally, not all fats are bad. It might be practical to limit the amount of fat you eat after exercise, but having some fat in your post-workout meal will not affect your recovery.
Choosing easily digested foods will promote faster nutrient absorption. The following list contain examples of simple and easily digested foods:
Rice, Ragi, Oatmeal, Quinoa, Sweet potatoes, Dark & leafy green vegetables, Fruits (pineapple, berries, banana, kiwi), Whole grain wraps
Chicken, Eggs, Mushroom, Milk, Cottage cheese (Paneer), Soya chunks, Chickpea, Salmon & Tuna.
Avocado, Nuts (Almond, Walnut), Trail mix (dried fruits and nuts)
Below are few post-workout snacks/meals that are great to replenish your body
1. Rice with sautéed vegetables & Chicken (for non-vegetarians) or Chickpea (vegetarians)
2. Rotis (whole wheat) with Paneer bhurji & sautéed mixed vegetables
3. Whole grain wrap with vegetables and Tuna (non-veg) or Soy Chunks (veg)
4. Whole grain Bread Sandwich with scrambled Eggs or crumbled Paneer
5. Oatmeal with Fruits, Berries & Nuts
6. Smoothie with Milk & variety of fresh fruits
7. Chocolate Milk
8. Greek Yogurt with Berries
Never try anything new just to catch up with the trend. What works for someone may not work for you. It's always best to experiment during training to learn what works best for your body. Eating the right foods to fuel your body after exercise will be the most important part of achieving your goals. Having a nutritional strategy in place will create the success of your food plan post and pre-workout.
Struggling to find the best diet plan for you? Contact us and we will be happy to help you find the perfect nutrition plan which works best for your body. Book appointment for online nutrition consultation at +91 8904194508 or write to us at email@example.com.