Good health depends on proper rest, regular exercise, and consuming the right foods. The body requires proper nutrition so that you can best perform daily activities. At Herbalife Nutrition, sports dietitians emphasize the need for healthy snacking before, during, and after exercising. Snaking on nutritious foods ensures adequate energy for exercise, helps in muscle recovery, and the maintenance of healthy body composition. You also need to stay hydrated by drinking sufficient fluids.
Use your hunger signals and exercise schedule to determine the type and number of snacks your body needs. When choosing snacks to curb hunger, a balance should be a guide. For a balanced snack, combine a carbohydrate, protein-rich foods, and healthy fat. To help in muscle repair and growth, be sure to consume lean protein regularly. During exercises, protein comes in handy because it promotes fullness to ward off hunger.
Carbohydrates provide both the body and brain energy and nourishment. For long-lasting energy before exercising, consume whole grains such as crackers and whole-wheat bread or a cereal rich in fiber. During exercise, pay attention to hunger cues like stomach rumbling, decreased concentration, dizziness, and fatigue. Eat a snack to increase your energy for better exercise performance and outcome. Avoid hunger pangs by snacking every 2-3 hours, amounting to three snacks a day, and three meals per day.
While carbs are the most effective source of fuel for exercise, timing is critical. Herbalife Nutrition experts recommend incorporating easy-to-digest carbohydrates into your pre-workout snack. You can include lean protein, moderately, and avoid fatty proteins that can lead to digestive problems if consumed too close to the workout time. Although timing varies across individuals, snacking an hour pre-workout is advised to allow the body enough digestion time. Some pre-workout snacks to consider include applesauce, dried dates in whole-grain cereal, and a fruit smoothie.
A proper post-workout snack should include three components: carbohydrates, proteins, and fluids. After exercise, focus on replacing the fuel burned, repairing muscles, and restoring fluids lost from sweating. Promote muscle building with around 20 grams of protein in your post-workout snack, consumed within the first hour after exercises for muscle rebuilding and replenishment. Consider healthy post-exercise snacks such as a protein shake from Herbalife, low-fat milk, and banana. Also, go for the sources that are easy to digest like Greek yogurt, a hard-boiled egg, nuts, or a slice of turkey. Avoid overeating your pre-workout snack so that you do not get an upset stomach during your workout.
Whether fueling for exercise, repairing muscles, or replacing lost energy, choose a balanced healthy snack that aligns with your health goals and performance. Make sure you snack on carbs before your workout for increased energy. Eat after your workout to replace the calories used up during an exercise. For fitness training, eat proteins after a workout for quick muscle recovery, in addition to foods containing electrolytes lost when you sweat.