What you eat has a significant effect on an athlete’s performance. It is no secret that many runners, cyclist, swimmers, and triathletes goes on carbo-loading to fuel their body. Endurance athletes suffer more free radical damage than those average Joes that is why understanding which foods to consume in order to help your body recover faster, is important.
When runners are asked what foods they usually include in their diets to sustain a long run, most of them said that a typical diet contains vegetables and fruits that are packed full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, lean protein, healthy fats, and foods that have quality carbohydrates to fuel your muscles. Here are the lists of super food that you need to add in your cart on your next trip to the grocery store.
List of Super foods for Runners
Kale: This is a member of the cabbage family that is widely known to contain high levels of vitamins A, C, E, K, B6, calcium and iron. Vitamin K promotes bone formation and strengthening while the vitamins A, C, and E, acts as antioxidants that
Chia seeds: Chia seeds are one of the richest sources of antioxidants and are loaded with calcium, iron, and protein. Also, these humble seeds have hydrophilic properties, having the ability to absorb more than 12 times its weigh in water, thus allowing prolonged hydration.
Bananas: Bananas is a rich source of potassium. Typically, endurance athletes are at risk for potassium deficiency that can cause muscle cramping and irregular heartbeat. Potassium is an important mineral that works with sodium to balance the fluids and electrolyte levels in your body. Your body cells use electrolytes to carry electrical impulses throughout your body. About 70% of the potassium in your body is found in the bodily fluids such as plasma, blood, and sweat, while the remaining percent can be found in the blood.
That is why, when you sweat heavily during intense workouts, you actually lose potassium in your body.
Walnuts: This nut is one of the best source of plant-based protein, which is vital for tissue growth and repair, and an array of vital functions. In addition,
Though not many have experienced it, vigorous exercise can trigger the narrowing of the airways, restricting airflow for some people. This healthy fat helps relieve airway inflammation and improve post exercise lung function.
Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes are starchy vegetables that provide complex carbohydrates. Slow-burning complex carbs maintains the level of glycogen during the run. It is also recommended to throw some protein in your diet to slow down the digestion of carbs and help fuel muscle growth. Sweet potatoes are also a rich source of vitamin A, C, potassium, and iron.
Wild Salmon: Wild salmon is another best source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids, which helps in the body’s metabolic processes. Its high content of omega-3 fatty acids can help reduce inflammation in our bodies that is needed for endurance athletes. Also, a regular consumption of omega-3 fatty acids have shown to reduce the risk
Whole Wheat Pasta: So what’s the difference between whole-wheat pasta and the regular pasta? Eating wheat pasta and refined white pasta is a matter of debate for many years. Basically, white pasta has lesser nutrients than wheat pasta because the refining process strips off the pasta’s key nutrients. Furthermore, wheat pasta contains more fiber than white pastas, which if eaten in the right timing is helpful for the endurance athlete.
A healthy diet is not only for maintaining good health, but also promotes the highest level of performance. A common misconception about being an athlete is that you need to eat less to ensure a better performance. On the contrary, eating more of the right foods is the key for improve performance.