When we introduce plenty of nutrient-rich foods and supplements into our diets, they help to speed up muscle recovery. In truth, we need them to replace lost nutrients, support overall health and reduce muscle soreness, enabling us to achieve a complete and more effective workout.
While nutritional options and fads abound, here are several proven foods and supplements that can improve the muscle recovery process, minimizing pain and inflammation.
Medical studies indicate that tart cherries boast anthocyanins and cyanidin, natural flavonoid plant pigments which pack some powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. In fact, as a concentrate tart cherry juice is a superior antioxidant to vitamin E and is proven to be a highly effective pain reliever and to assist with muscle recovery. A 2010 study confirmed that 12 oz of tart cherry juice for seven days before and during strenuous events minimizes the amount of pain experienced afterwards.
Many of us will be pleased to hear that guzzling a bit of (all-natural) chocolate milk between two exhausting and intensive exercise bouts can function as a highly effective muscle recovery aid. While it is known that chocolate milk provides a healthy dose of calcium, a study of alternative forms of post-exercise recovery proves that it can help us boost our duration.
Despite being rich in natural sugars, sweet potatoes are an effective dietary addition for muscle recovery, too. Perhaps surprisingly, they won’t raise your blood sugar if prepared in a way that maximizes carbohydrate intake with minimal calories and fat. For instance, sweet potatoes baked in their skins offer a fiber and carbohydrate-loaded addition to your diet without raising the glycemic
load and caloric content of your recipes. Be sure to pick the right sweet potatoes from the market or grocer, however, as the deeper an orange hue this vegetable is, the more nutrient-rich beta-carotene it contains.
Since we don’t always have the time to squeeze cherries and cook sweet potatoes, BodyHealth’s Perfect Greens superfood formula includes organic sweet potato and dozens of other nutrient-packed organic veggies, fruits, herbs, botanicals, probiotics, enzymes and anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, detoxification ingredients to help optimize your diet and aid in recovery. Protein deficiency is incredibly common, and many don’t realize that incorporating an amino acid supplement such as PerfectAmino™ as part of their daily regimen can easily rectify this issue. Amino acids behave as the foundation on which protein is built, which in turn allows our bodies to recover muscle at a faster rate and experience less pain. PerfectAmino is ideal for those seeking to minimize calorie intake and maximize gains, especially since they minimize amino acid waste and encourage protein development.
For example, 99% of amino acids provided by PerfectAmino are immediately put to work, and each 0.4-calorie tablet is fully absorbed by the body within 23 minutes to help speed up the recovery process.
Also important for energy and recovery is magnesium, a powerful mineral that is critically effective at energizing our bodies and muscle functions. Magnesium vitally helps in the production of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), which involves the process of cells creating energy stores, and is crucial in minimizing pain, shortening muscle recovery time and encouraging overall physical health by generating the energy required for our cells to break down food and carbohydrates. In turn, cells convert this fuel source into the building blocks required to create new enzymes and proteins. This helps to keep our bodies energized. Magnesium also reduces the build-up of lactic acid, which can otherwise knot up muscles and cause muscle cramps.
A single scoop of BodyHealth’s Perfect Calm supplies 84% of the recommended daily value of magnesium. Available in berry lemon and tangerine flavors, Perfect Calm helps restore healthy magnesium levels, stabilize calcium-magnesium balance and, as a bonus, aids in relaxation.
A healthy diet isn’t always enough to maximize muscle recovery in a shorter timespan. That being said, these healthful foods and powerful supplements will help you train harder and go further.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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If you search for “energy supplement” on amazon, you get over 4,000 results.
How can any reasonable human sift through all that and find the ones that work? Or which ones are bogus?
I did a deep dive into the truth about “increasing your energy” in another article. It gives you a framework for understanding how real energy supplements work and why.
But here I want to do something different.
I want to get practical and tactical with 10 proven ways to boost energy production in your cellular energy factories –– your mitochondria.
We’ll start with the lifestyle and dietary ways to boost your mitochondria and then look at a few powerful supplements.
Let’s start with the cheapest...
Your average health food store has an entire section devoted to “energy.”
The products on the shelf, with their fancy logos and specially designed packaging, make grandiose claims about what they will do for your “energy levels.”
But the truth?
Most of them are stimulants in disguise, artificially jacking you up to give you the sensation of energy.
But in the end, they do more harm than good. They increase cortisol, cause dehydration, and deplete you.
Because almost none of them do anything on the biological level that supports your real energy system: your mitochondria and metabolism.
That’s why in this article I want to show you what to look for with any new supplement.... and why.
It’s the “most wonderful time of the year” according to Andy Williams. Or should it be the most wonderFULL time of the year? I’m referring to the last 6 weeks of the year which is fraught with one nutritional landmine after another.
Let’s face it, things like pumpkin pie, stovetop stuffing, eggnog, pumpkin-spiced lattes, peanut brittle, homemade fudge, and divinity only make their appearance during this brief window so we might as well gorge ourselves with as much as we can, right?
No wonder the average American gains 2 to 5 pounds (or more) over the holidays. You’d think we were part bear by eating all…the…things before going into several months of hibernation. Unfortunately, this is a major reason people gradually gain weight over the course of years and decades. Gaining weight is easy while losing it is another story.