Most people know that proper nutrition and an active lifestyle are two essential building blocks of staying healthy. And you probably also know that what you eat before and after a workout can have a huge impact on your performance and recovery. But it's not always easy to know exactly what those should be and the best time to consume them. That's why we've put together a little information on some of our favorite superfoods that can positively impact a workout.
These little guys pack a powerful punch! Their name comes from the Mayan word "Chiabaan" which means 'strengthening'. Not only are chia seeds 20% protein and a potent antioxidant, but they also hold more Omega-3's than any other plant. Chia seeds also have a hydrophilic husk which draws in water, sometimes up to 10-12 times their weight! This water-y gel mixture helps satiety and keeps your body hydrated.
Here's a great recipe from the Minimalist Baker for a Chocolate Chia Recovery Drink - give it a try!
Every little blueberry is high in carbs, nutrients, and antioxidants - but low in sugar and calories. What more could you want? The high complex carb content not only gives you energy but they are slower to burn and digest which fuels your system longer and helps give you sustainable energy for your workout! The high levels of antioxidants help to re-build tissue by destroying free radicals, which accelerates muscle repair after a workout. All of this goodness makes blueberries a perfect snack, before, during or after your workout.
Have you ever tried a Blueberry Power Smoothie Bowl? We recommend this one from Recipe Runner.
THE PROTEIN KING! These nuts pack 7g of protein per ounce and lots of fiber as well, which can help curb your hunger and help keep you fuller longer. Not only does protein make this an awesome post workout food but it's magnesium content helps your bones out as well (don't forget about those little guys!). Peanuts provide you with healthy fats and niacin which is an important B-Complex vitamin that gives your body the energy it needs after a hard gym session.
We're loving this thai peanut dressing - check out Once Upon a Chef's Recipe here.
This hardy nut helps you pack on muscle and boost your health! A handful of these awesome gals has more protein than an egg and contains manganese and copper which boost energy by helping the mitochondria of your cells. The antioxidants found in almonds help your body control sugar and raise HDL cholesterol (the good kind that helps your heart 😉 ). You'll also get an energy boost from the naturally occurring riboflavin and B vitamins.
Fancy toast is all the rage right now - The Modern Proper has a delicious looking Almond Butter Toast with Bananas and Coconut!
These little grain-like seeds are actually not a grain or wheat at all! Despite the name, these are indeed seeds. They are naturally low in calories and high in protein and nutrients when compared to grains like oats or wheat. But why will they help your workout? They deliver both carbs and amino acids while being high in fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants. These work best when consumed 45 minutes before your workout or in the first 30 minutes after a workout.
Get more out of your pancakes with The Thriving Vegan's Buckwheat Pancakes!
What is your go-to for a workout boost?
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