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The Importance Of Post-Workout Nutrition

Everyone knows that to lose weight and build muscle you don't just need to exercise. In fact, without a proper diet you won't be able to achieve your fitness goals. Although a lot of athletes focus on what they eat before they hit the gym, paying attention to your post-workout meals is just as important. To understand what you need to eat and why, it is significant to know how exercising affects your body. When you work out, your muscles use up glycogen for fuel, so at the end of your training they are somewhat depleted of it. In addition, some of the proteins in your muscles get broken down. So, after your workout session your body tries to rebuild its glycogen stores and repair those proteins. And what does it need in order to do this? That is right, food! But not just any kind. If you wish to help your body and enhance your recovery, here are several things you should keep in mind about post-workout nutrition.

Eat protein-rich foods

To boost your muscle recovery and growth and ensure that all that hard training doesn't go to waste, make sure you eat protein-rich foods after a workout. Of course, you don't have to run home to prepare a meal that contains hundreds of grams of protein. Actually, all you need after a good session is 10 to 20 grams of protein. Some of the foods that are ideal for your post-workout snack are Greek yogurt, eggs, kefir, quinoa, navy beans, canned tuna, cottage cheese, as well as trail mixes that are not too high in sodium, sugar, and saturated fats. There are also various effective post-workout beverages available on the market that can speed up your recovery and even boost your immune system. Whether you choose healthy snacks or sports drinks, consuming an adequate amount of protein gives your body the amino acids it needs to repair these proteins.

Do not avoid carbs

Usually, people who want to lose weight try to avoid carbs completely or as much as possible, However, your body needs carbs to replenish glycogen stores after a workout. The amount of carbs you will need to consume depends on the type of activity you participate in. For example, since endurance sports use more glycogen than resistance training, runners and swimmers need more carbs than bodybuilders. It is especially important that you eat plenty of carbs if you work out twice a day. If you take a one-day break between your sessions, you don't have to eat so many carbs. However, keep in mind that not all carbs are equal. Those found in processed, refined or added sugars that do not contain any nutritional value, so avoid eating candy or drinking soda after your training session. Instead, focus on legumes, starchy vegetables and whole-grain and fiber.

Fat is not your enemy

Just as many people avoid carbs, a lot of them also believe that eating fat after a workout slows down digestion and hinders the absorption of nutrients. Although fat can slow down the absorption of your meal, it will not reduce its benefits. In fact, it has been proven that drinking whole milk after a workout promoted muscle growth much more than having a glass of skim milk. Although you should limit the amount of fat you intake after exercising, you shouldn't avoid it completely.

If you want to give your body the nutrients it needs to recover properly, try and get carbohydrates, vitamins and proteins in as natural a form as possible. Instead of drinking soft drinks opt for a bowl of fruit. Also, eating whole grains instead of processed flours is always a good choice. With proper post-workout nutrition, you will be able to prevent muscle degradation and weakness, regulate glycogen repletion, speed up your recovery, and build muscle mass.

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