A successful workout stresses your body – depleting nutrient stores, tearing muscle fibres, and increasing oxidative stress. Whether you ran a marathon, mastered a CrossFit session, or sweat-it-out at hot yoga, food can play an integral role in helping your body recover and build greater strength. You conquered your workout. Now conquer your recovery with these five post-workout foods:

1. Chocolate Milk

When drunk soon after your workout, chocolate milk makes a first rate recovery drink. It provides water and minerals to aid hydration, along with an excellent ratio of carbohydrate to protein that helps recharge your muscles.

2. Protein bar

In order for your body to build new proteins after a workout, it needs an available source of all the essential amino acids. Look for protein bars that are high in nutrients like pea proteins,vitamin C, calcium, and iron.

3. Blueberries

Grabbing a handful of fresh blueberries, or adding a ½ cup to your post-workout smoothie, can do more for your recovery than just supplying carbohydrates and antioxidants. Researchers found that the anthocyanins in blueberries can help athletes to regain their muscle strength more quickly [1]

4. Oatmeal

Oatmeal is a concentrated source of complex carbohydrates that can help your body replenish muscle glycogen stores that become depleted during endurance or high-intensity workouts. Eating it within 4 hours after exercise helps to maximize its benefits.

5. Hummus

The chickpeas in hummus can help replenish the iron, potassium, and magnesium you lose through a sweaty workout. When combined with whole grain pita, they equip your body with all the essential amino acids it needs to build and repair muscle.

What’s your favorite post-workout food? Let us know in the comments section below.

References:

  1. McLeay, Yanita et al. “Effects of New Zealand Blueberry Consumption Recovery from Eccentric Exercise-Induced Muscle Damage.” Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 9.19 (2012): Web. 24 May 2015.