Recovery Foods: What to Eat After a Workout

by in Fitness, June 16, 2012
greek yogurt
Eat Greek yogurt after a workout to replenish energy.

Eating after exercise is a MUST for healthy muscles. Recover and refuel with these regenerating foods.

What and When?
The body craves both carbs and protein after exercise. Carbohydrates are required to replenish energy stores, while protein repairs tired muscle fibers.

To optimize results, you want to take in carbohydrate and protein in about a 3 to 1 ratio, that’s 3 grams of carbs for every one gram of protein. Depending on when you exercise, recovery food can be a snack or a meal; either way, look to these 5 recovery foods.

Chocolate Milk
Research studies continue to find that chocolate milk can benefit muscle recovery in athletes. One cup has 23 grams of carbs and 8 grams of protein – that’s just about 3:1.

Chicken Breast
Lean protein like chicken is packed with muscle building amino acids. Three ounces of cooked chicken breast has about 24 grams of protein. Add to pasta or enjoy in a sandwich or wrap; add a piece of fruit or a low fat yogurt to up the carbs and complete the meal.

Greek Yogurt
Go Greek for extra protein – 1 cup has 23 grams – that’s more than double most regular varieties. Top with fresh or dried fruit and granola.

Bars
Occasionally your schedule may not allow for even the simplest meal prep. On those days opt for an energy bar. Look for one that has the proper ratio of carbs to protein like Clif or Luna Bars.

Peanut Butter
You’ll find 7 grams of protein in a serving (2 tablespoons) of peanut butter. Spread on an apple, whole grain bread with jam or blend into smoothie for some super delicious (and budget-friendly) recovery fuel.

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Comments (335)

  1. Katie says:

    I made this salad for the first time this week and I LOVED it. It was cool, refreshing and crunchy. Plus it really filled me up.
    http://katieinthekitchenherethere.blogspot.com/20

  2. Katie says:

    You can also try this guilty pleasure after a workout. it beat the store brand candy, trust me.
    http://katieinthekitchenherethere.blogspot.com/20

  3. spikerguy says:

    Love the RECOVERY FOODS listing, and hope it can become a regular feature for all us amatuer jocks.____ I know that to maximize the muscle development, the nutrition folks encourage the consumption of protein almost immediately afterward. What is the optimum suggested length of this time frame?____ A quickie favorite with me is to make a healthy Taquerito…using a very lightly spray oiled flat griddle or saute pan, heated to medium, lightly toast 2-3 6' round corn tortillas

  4. spikerguy says:

    continued ~ remove to a warm side side dish; then pour onto the still hot griddle a seasoned egg scramble (use a tad of sea salt, some fresh ground pepper and a few drops of chipolte sauce) turn the heat to low; then add into the eggs some ready made guacamole; and on the side, some non-fat, seasoned canned black refried beans,and a separate heaping of fresh medium hot salsa you've purchased from the produce or deli section..finally add on top of the Scrambled Green Eggs a large pinch of shredded Melting Cheese…turn off the heat…don't want to toughen those yummy light scrambles…Serve atop the crispy corn tortillas…goes down best a long neck cold beer..fabulous stuff.
    Serving note: I like to slide the toasted tortillas under my finished eggs, and then use my griddle, or saute pan as the individual serving dish…every thing stays so delightfully hot that way.SPIKE!

  5. betty timms says:

    wonderful advice

  6. [...] muscles. Recover and refuel with regenerating foods like chicken, Greek yogurt or chocolate milk.blog.foodnetwork.com/…/recovery-foods-what-to-eat-after-a-… 0savesSave If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS [...]

  7. [...] Eating after exercise is a MUST for healthy muscles. Recover and refuel with regenerating foods like chicken, Greek yogurt or chocolate milk.blog.foodnetwork.com/…/recovery-foods-what-to-eat-after-a-… [...]

  8. [...] Eating after exercise is a MUST for healthy muscles. Recover and refuel with regenerating foods like chicken, Greek yogurt or chocolate milk.blog.foodnetwork.com/…/recovery-foods-what-to-eat-after-a-… [...]

  9. [...] Eating after exercise is a MUST for healthy muscles. Recover and refuel with regenerating foods like chicken, Greek yogurt or chocolate milk.blog.foodnetwork.com/…/recovery-foods-what-to-eat-after-a-… [...]

  10. pahllancy says:

    More than ever before we are striving to live longer and stay healthier longer and your diet food Healthy Living invokes making sure the food you eat is healthy.

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