For an effective workout, it is important to know what to eat before and after each session. If you strive to eat right to keep yourself physically active, include these foods in your shopping list.
Incredibly rich in protein, this delicate dairy product contains the best amino acids for building muscle after a workout. Add granulated cottage cheese to smoothies and pancakes, or eat with a topping of fresh fruit and granola.
Lenten poultry is an unsurprising choice; this meat is low in calories and fat but high in protein, more than 20 grams per 85-gram serving. But chicken can easily get boring, especially if it's dry, so marinate, roast or bake it to keep the meat juicy.
Recipe: Chicken breasts baked in lemon sauce
This fruit is an ideal choice before a workout, as it is usually quick and easy to digest. Plus, bananas are high in B vitamins, which are good for energy metabolism, and minerals that are important for muscle function (potassium is one of them).
The omega-3 fatty acids found in salmon are good for your skin, heart, eyes, blood and brain. These essential fats also have anti-inflammatory properties that help the body recover from exercise.
Recipe: Baked salmon in the oven
This source of plant-based protein can compete with meat. Add it to a healthy and hearty lunch after an afternoon run or bike ride.
Recipe: Tofu Tacos
This childhood favorite treat isn't just for kids. Low-fat chocolate milk contains everything your body needs after exercise. Each serving contains enough fluids, protein, carbohydrates, vitamin D, calcium, and other electrolytes needed for muscle recovery.
Beets and beet juice are rich in antioxidants that protect cells. They also contain compounds that promote blood circulation - this prepares the body for physical activity. Add raw or cooked beets to smoothies along with tart ingredients like pineapple and lime, or layer roasted beets over a salad.
How to peel and juice beets
There's room in your fitness menu for both Greek and traditional yogurt. Regular yogurt is good for a light snack before a workout and provides vitamin D. Protein-rich Greek yogurt will help soothe tired muscles after exercise.
Many fitness enthusiasts forgo carbohydrates, yet they are essential for energy. The yam is a versatile and easy-to-use ingredient in meals and snacks. Prepare chips or soup and eat them during the day before going to the gym, and for breakfast after a workout, grate and fry yams in a frying pan along with.