What Role Does Nutrition Play In Reaching Your Fitness Goals?
For fitness buffs, the benefits of exercise alone are well worth the commitment. Significantly decreasing anxiety, depression and even pain, it can be considered a part of our overall self-care routine. However, proper nutrition can also significantly contribute to our fitness goals by keeping us energetic and fueled and aiding us in recovery. By being mindful of your diet, nutrition works together with exercise to help us make some incredible fitness gains.
Adequate protein intake
For all those who exercise regularly, whether it be cardio or weight training, adequate protein is a must in ensuring proper health. For athletes, weightlifters and bodybuilders, your protein intake should be higher than the 0.8 gram per kilogram suggested recommendation. You can simply eat more protein-rich foods from animal and plant sources or incorporate a protein powder into your diet. Coupled with your exercise regimen, you will notice some fitness gains much faster.
Food to fuel our bodies
There are plenty of foods that can boost our performance, or, on the contrary, hinder it. Carbohydrates are extremely important to anyone serious about fitness and are among the best types of foods to be eaten before and after a workout. Pre-workout, they provides us with the sustained energy needed for endurance and post-workout, they helps keep our cortisol (stress) levels down. However, you want to focus on complex carbs such as whole wheat bread and beans rather than simple carbs such as white flour and sugar, as the latter results in energy crashes. For avid coffee drinkers, especially those who like a caffeine rush to get ready for the gym, you can easily find ways to make your coffee stronger and delicious without resorting to adding heaps of white sugar.
Recovery from injuries
There are lots of topical options that aid our bodies in injury recovery and prevention. There are also fantastic foods we can incorporate into our diets that can reduce inflammation and accelerate recovery. Spices such as turmeric and foods like tomatoes, nuts and green leafy vegetables are all anti-inflammatory and can prevent pain associated with inflammation or aid in recovery. This means we can get back to doing what we love, faster.
While exercise is an integral component of our overall health, nutrition also plays a key role. By ensuring an adequate amount of protein, focusing on carbohydrates that fuel and incorporating anti-inflammatory foods into our diet, we can use nutrition to effectively accelerate our fitness goals.
Author: Jennifer Dawson