5 Amazing Recovery Foods
1. Chocolate Milk: Water is great to rehydrate with during your workout. And sports drinks claim to help in post workout recovery, but many are full of high-fructose corn syrup and other sugars. Chocolate milk contains all the same carbohydrates and proteins that Gatorade does, and contains only a little sodium and sugar. It also contains caffeine which acts as a vasodilator, widening and relaxing blood vessels so that restorative oxygen-rich blood can more easily flow through your muscles. Its high water content replaces fluids lost as sweat, preventing dehydration. Plus it packs a nutritional bonus of calcium.
2. Smoothie: It's important to get carbs and protein into your body within 30-45 minutes of finishing your workout, however buildup of acids in your body after intense workouts will often cause loss of appetite, and sometimes even nausea. After a workout, it may be easier to drink your meal instead of eating it. In order to deliver your muscles the nutrients you need to repair themselves, a fresh and cold smoothie can often do the trick. Choose your ingredients wisely: proteins such as milk, protein powder, chia, and nuts; carbs such as honey, banana, and wheat germ; and anti-oxidants such as frozen berries, will give you what you need to recover properly.
3. Banana and Coconut: These are good choices for avoiding post-exercise cramps. Cramping is caused when your body doesn't have enough electrolytes like potassium, sodium and calcium. Potassium prevents involuntary muscle contraction, and is found in abundance in both bananas and coconuts. Add some banana and coconut shreds to your fruit smoothie to repair your muscles and prevent cramping.
4. Salmon: This is the best choice for long, slow endurance recovery. Salmon is packed with lean protein and contains omega-3 fatty acids. The omega-3 fatty acids lowers the amount of prostaglandin, a naturally produced compound in the body that can accentuate inflammation. This helps reduce post-exercise muscle inflammation.
5. Honey: Honey contains anti-inflammatory properties and carbohydrates that are needed to help rebuild muscle fibers. This helps soothe muscles that are sore from high-intensity activities.Honey also supports the immune system, and thus boosts the acute immunosuppressant response of exercise.