There is a reason why people say abs are made in the kitchen. Yes, exercise does matter. However you only exercise for maybe an hour a day. So, what you do for the rest of the day and what you eat makes a big difference. Here are our top picks of foods you should have in your fridge to help you with your fitness journey…
Cottage cheese is great as it offers a complete amino acid profile. It also contains high levels of whey and casein protein which is essential when trying to grow and develop your muscles.
One of my all time favourites is avocados. They are high in Omega-3 and ALA. Both of these will help to reduce DOMS after an intense workout. As they are high in good fats, it will also help keep you feeling fuller for longer.
Berries are a low glycemic food, which can curb your cravings for snacks and sweet treats and prevents blood sugar crashes due to their slow energy release. Berries are also known to be a great antioxidant, helping to repair damaged muscle tissue and calm inflammation. The best berries to include in your diet are – strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries. However, any dark berries are good to include in your diet.
One you are probably more aware of is eggs. Not only are they a very cheap option. They also contain ALL of the nine essential amino acids and approx 9 grams of protein per egg. They also have high levels of vitamin B-12, which is necessary for the breakdown of fat. Vitamin B-12 is also known to help your brain and muscles communicate better for more precise contraction during heavy lifts.
Plain natural yogurt contains twice the amount of protein than that of a regular yogurt. It will help to repair any damaged muscles. A great combination as a snack or a breakfast option would be – natural yogurt topped with berries and a sprinkling of oats or granola.
Hummus is made primarily from chickpeas. Chickpeas are naturally high in protein and carbohydrates. This combination is particularly beneficial for the slow release of carbohydrates into the bloodstream.
Bananas are a great source of fast energy, particularly just before or just after a workout. Their natural sugars will give you an instant boost of energy. However, bananas are high in calories and potassium so we wouldn’t recommend having more than one a day.
Scientists have discovered that nitrate, an abundant compound found in spinach can help to build and tone your muscles. It is also a great source of folic acid, which repairs DNA and helps to produce red blood cells. Rich in magnesium, it can help to maintain normal muscle and nerve function. If you can, always opt for raw spinach instead of cooked, as cooking it will lose some of its nutrients.
Fish such as mackerel is a great source of Omega-3 fatty acids. Not only is it also a great source of protein, it will help protect your joints and aid better brain function. A really good all-rounder and one we advise you have in your diet at least twice a week.
From an early age, we are told milk is great for strengthening our bones. This is because it contains both casein and whey proteins. When combined together, these proteins can increase the muscle protein synthesis which is needed to aid muscle growth. One research paper suggested drinking milk post-workout will produce more lean muscle than any other food source.
We hope you found this article helpful but if you have any questions, please do get in touch.
The Fitness Focus Team