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What to eat after workout

Eating after a workout is important

It’s crucial to comprehend how physical activity impacts your body in order to know how the correct nutrients can benefit you after workout.

Glycogen, the body’s main fuel source, is used up by your muscles as you exercise, especially during high-intensity workouts. Your muscles’ glycogen levels are subsequently partially depleted as a result. Your muscles’ proteins can also deteriorate and sustain damage (1, 2 Trusted Source, 3 Trusted Source).

fter your workout, your body rebuilds glycogen stores and regrows those muscle proteins. Eating the right nutrients soon after you exercise can help your body get this done faster. It’s especially important to eat carbs and protein after your workout.

Doing this helps your body:

  • decrease muscle protein breakdown
  • increase muscle protein synthesis (growth)
  • restore glycogen stores
  • enhance recovery

Protein, carbs, and fat

Your body uses protein, carbohydrates, and fat during the post-workout recovery process. It’s crucial to have the appropriate mixture because of this.

Your mealtime schedule is also crucial. For more than 40 years, experts in sports nutrition have been researching the timing of nutrients. Today, specialists use a combination of more recent and older studies to inform their recommendations.

Protein helps repair and build muscle

Exercise triggers the breakdown of muscle protein. The rate at which this happens depends on the exercise and your level of training, but even well-trained athletes experience muscle-protein breakdown .

Carbs help with recovery

Your body’s glycogen stores are used as fuel during exercise, and consuming carbs after your workout helps replenish them.

The rate at which your glycogen stores are used depends on the activity. For example, endurance sports cause your body to use more glycogen than resistance training. For this reason, if you participate in endurance sports (running, swimming, etc.), you might need to consume more carbs than someone engaging in weightlifting.

Fat may provide some benefits

There is not enough evidence to say whether you should limit fat intake after a workout (1).

Many people think that eating fat after a workout slows digestion and inhibits the absorption of nutrients. While fat might slow down the absorption of your post-workout meal, it may not reduce its benefits. For example, a study showed that whole milk was more effective at promoting muscle growth after a workout than skim milk .

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