It is extremely important to eat post a vigorous workout to replace calories that have been burnt. This helps firstly, in replacing the glycogen that has been depleted during the exercise and secondly, eating proteins during this time can help with muscle recovery.
Skipping a post-workout snack can leave you feeling tired, low and can hinder recovery. A perfect post-workout snack is a combination of carbohydrates and proteins.
Yogurt and Fruits:
Yogurt is a perfect combination of protein and carbohydrates with traces of fat. It also contains a good amount of calcium, which helps in bone building. This makes yogurt along with fruits a great post-workout snack.
Tip – Yogurt makes for a great smoothie base for lactose-intolerant people.
Peanutbutter and Banana Smoothie:
Blend 2 spoons of peanut butter, 1 banana, a pinch of cinnamon, almond milk and whey protein (optional) to make the perfect post-workout smoothie. The best part about this smoothie is that it has proven to be a very effective pre-workout beverage as well. When consumed post a workout, it rejuvenates the body easily and the cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar.
Tip – Peanutbutter and bananas have a great consistency to turn into ice cream or popsicles.
Popcorn is rich in fibers, antioxidants and carbohydrates, the latter making it a good source of glycogens which is a good energy source for the body. During a workout, the body uses up glycogens and must be replaced for a speedy recovery failure of which can lead to feelings of fatigue. This make popcorn a great binge-worthy snack. Just make sure to indulge in the butterless ones!
Tip – Sprinkle your favorite protein whey powder to cooked popcorn for flavor and protein.
Fruits with Nut Butter:
Fruits are loaded with vitamins, folate, antioxidants and macronutrients such as iron, calcium and potassium. Moreover, natural sugar or fructose present in fruit provides energy post a workout. Couple this with some nut butter and you have an easy to make, filling post-workout snack.
Tip – Sundried or dehydrated fruit and nut butter make for a great portable snack that doesn’t get spoiled easily.
Hummus with Cut Vegetables:
Another great snack that is a combination of carbohydrates and proteins is a bowl of hummus with vegetable crudites. Raw veggies can provide fiber while chickpeas restore blood sugar levels. Hummus also contains olive oil which is a good source of anti-oxidants.
Tip – Add more ingredients like lettuce, boiled chicken or grilled tofu to make a hummus salad.
Homemade Granolas are packed with health benefits, especially when the ingredients can be altered to your preferences. Rolled oats, flax seeds, honey, almonds and raisins are just a few ingredients that can be used to make a healthy mix. It’s a great on-the-go snack that restores blood sugar levels. However, since granola can be a high-calorie food, it’s important to control portions while eating.
Tip – Combine this with Yogurt and fruits to make a light meal.
You can also get creative by combining some of these snacks or creating variations.