Contributed by: Rachana Arya

Introduction

After a tough, strenuous workout, you are likely to feel exercise-induced muscle soreness.

Muscle soreness is not only unpleasant, but it can also limit your function and put you in a not-so-pleasant mood. 

Certain foods have been known to aggravate inflammation. But there is a range of foods you can eat throughout the day to enhance your workout recovery and lessen the impact of those gruelling workouts.

While no single food or nutrient that can prevent muscle soreness, including some of the following foods, may help with muscle recovery after your next gym workout.

So, go ahead and stock your fridge and pantry with these muscle-recovery foods.

Watermelon

Watermelon is more than a juicy thirst quencher. Studies indicate that it may minimise muscle pain and muscle injury after exercise.

Watermelon includes elements that aid in exercise performance and recovery, such as carbohydrates, and antioxidants. 

Watermelon is loaded with the amino acid L-citrulline, which helps to increase blood circulation to muscles.

Berries

According to research, cherries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries, cranberries and strawberries, all contain anthocyanins, an inflammation-reducing compound that may aid in muscle rehabilitation, minimize post-run muscle pain, delay time to fatigue, and reduce post-exercise recovery.

Anthocyanins are plant chemicals found in tart cherry juice. They contain potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant capabilities, which may help to minimise discomfort and exercise-induced muscle damage. 

Pomegranate juice

Pomegranate is not only delicious, hydrating, and nutrient-dense, but it also enhances muscle repair after exercise.

Its juice is a rich source of polyphenols, which are plant compounds with antioxidants.

It is abundant in anti-inflammatory antioxidants making it the ideal pre-or post-workout drink to prevent muscle and cell damage related to exercise.

As such, drinking pomegranate juice can play an important role in replenishing muscles quickly post-workout. 

Beetroot

Research has found that drinking beetroot juice or eating raw beetroot promotes muscle rehabilitation. Beets are high in dietary nitrates.

Nitrates in your diet may send oxygen to your muscles and enhance the effectiveness of mitochondria, which are portions of cells that provide the energy that powers your cells.

Meanwhile, betalains may help to decrease inflammation and oxidative stress.

Eggs

Eggs are a nutrient-dense food that athletes choose due to their high bioavailable protein content.

Consuming them after a workout promotes muscle healing. Although many individuals prefer to eat only egg whites, research suggests that entire eggs may be a healthier choice after exercise.

Researchers believe this is because the nutrient-dense yolk contains vitamins, minerals, and fatty acids including vitamin A, selenium, zinc, and the fatty acid palmitate, which may accelerate the rate of metabolism.

Dairy products

According to certain research, dairy consumption can considerably improve workout performance and muscle repair.

Milk is abundant in protein, so it gives your body the nutrition it needs for muscle repair.

It is for this reason that milk and milk products such as yoghurt and cottage cheese are commonly used as post-exercise nourishment.

Additionally, carbohydrates can also be found in milk and dairy products.

Eating carbohydrates and protein promotes muscle growth and helps your muscles replenish their glycogen stores — the stored form of glucose, or sugar.

Starchy vegetables

When you work out hard, you deplete your muscles’ glycogen stores, which are the stored form of glucose.

Having enough glycogen available in your muscles is critical for peak athletic performance, so it’s critical to replace these stores after exercises.

This is especially true for athletes who engage in strenuous activity. Consuming carbohydrates enhances muscle glycogen replenishment.

Post-workout carbohydrate options include starchy vegetables such as sweet potato, butternut squash, and potatoes.

Turmeric

Turmeric contains the anti-inflammatory antioxidant curcumin, which is known to delay muscle soreness.

Compounds in this spice assist in minimising muscle injury and inflammation while also promoting muscle repair, resulting in improved athletic performance.

Final thoughts

Nutrition is critical when it comes to muscle repair. Add these foods to your post-workout meal to say goodbye to sore muscles, expedite muscle recovery and lessen exercise-related discomfort.

Moreover, you should also frequently opt for health screening. It provides you with vital insights into your health, allowing you to take necessary measures to improve it.

Book The Full Body Health Checkup Today!