5 FOODS TO FUEL YOUR BODY FOR EXERCISE
Exercise is not only a good way to lose weight, it’s essential for staying healthy.
But if you’re training regularly, you will need to eat more to compensate for the calories you are burning.
The foods you eat more of are very important though – as the wrong ones could make you gain weight.
I have put together a list of five foods which are the best fuel to eat before and after intense workouts.
This gluten-free grain is a source of magnesium, essential for energy production.
Unlike other grains, quinoa is a ‘complete protein’, meaning it provides all the amino acid building blocks the body needs to make new proteins. This makes quinoa a great alternative to animal protein for vegetarians.
On its own it’s pretty bland, so have it with a healthy curry (instead of rice). Or when you boil it, throw in a stock cube to add extra flavour.
- SWEET POTATO
For an easy post-workout meal, stuff a baked sweet potato with chickpeas and spinach, then top with a spoonful of natural yogurt and drizzle with tahini.
If you’re doing a high-intensity workout, such as a boot camp or spin class, follow it up with a meal containing good carbohydrates and protein, to refuel and help your muscles recover.
Sweet potato is a great choice, because it provides energising carbs, plus vitamin C and beta carotene, needed for maintaining healthy joints.
Turkey makes a great midweek meal all year.
This lean white meat is a great choice for anyone who’s upping their activity, as it also contains B vitamins and selenium (which helps protect against tissue damage).
Turkey works well with a host of flavours – I love using turkey mince to make meatballs, and adding some chopped kale, for fibre. Serve with wholewheat pasta and a tomato sauce.
- BLACK BEANS
Toss black beans straight from the tin with chunks of roasted butternut squash, some cooked brown rice and a handful of spinach leaves, garnished with coriander and lime juice, for a healthy salad.
Black beans are a great source of fibre, and ideal for lunch. They will keep you full throughout the day.
Eating a decent breakfast is always important, but even more so when you’re exercising.
They provide you with a slow and steady release of energy throughout the morning.
Oats also help to lower cholesterol.
If you’re pressed for time in the morning, make overnight oats. Mix 50g oats with 200ml almond milk, and 1tsp of honey. Leave in the fridge until morning, stir in some fresh berries and they’re good to go.