7 Foods You Should Never Eat After a Workout (And Why)

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7 Foods You Should Never Eat After a Workout (And Why)

You’ve just finished a grueling workout and you’re feeling proud of yourself. You’ve burned a lot of calories, built some muscle, and boosted your metabolism. But before you reach for a snack, you should know that some foods can undo all your hard work and sabotage your fitness goals. Here are seven foods you should never eat after a workout and why.

1. Fried Foods

Fried foods are high in fat, calories, and salt. They can cause inflammation, bloating, and indigestion. They can also slow down your recovery and make you feel sluggish and tired. Fried foods are not good for your health in general, but they are especially bad after a workout when your body needs nutrients and hydration.

Instead of fried foods, opt for lean protein and complex carbohydrates that can replenish your energy and repair your muscles. For example, you can have grilled chicken and brown rice, or a turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread.

2. Sugary Drinks

Sugary drinks such as soda, juice, and sports drinks can spike your blood sugar and insulin levels, which can lead to fat storage and weight gain. They can also dehydrate you and cause tooth decay. Sugary drinks are empty calories that don’t provide any nutritional value or satisfaction.

Instead of sugary drinks, drink water or coconut water that can hydrate you and replenish your electrolytes. You can also add some lemon, cucumber, or mint to your water for some flavor and freshness.

3. Alcohol

Alcohol is a diuretic that can dehydrate you and impair your muscle recovery. It can also interfere with your sleep quality and hormone balance, which can affect your performance and results. Alcohol can also lower your inhibitions and make you more likely to overeat or binge on unhealthy foods.

Instead of alcohol, drink herbal tea or sparkling water that can relax you and quench your thirst. You can also treat yourself to a small piece of dark chocolate or some berries that can satisfy your sweet tooth and provide antioxidants.

4. Processed Foods

Processed foods such as chips, cookies, crackers, and candy are loaded with refined carbohydrates, added sugars, artificial ingredients, and preservatives. They can cause inflammation, oxidative stress, and insulin resistance. They can also trigger cravings and hunger, making you eat more than you need.

Instead of processed foods, eat whole foods that are rich in fiber, protein, and healthy fats. These foods can keep you full and satisfied, and provide vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that can support your health and wellness. For example, you can have a handful of nuts and seeds, or some yogurt and fruit.

5. Dairy Products

Dairy products such as milk, cheese, and ice cream can cause digestive issues, bloating, and gas for some people, especially those who are lactose intolerant or sensitive. They can also increase mucus production and congestion, which can affect your breathing and recovery. Dairy products are also high in saturated fat and cholesterol, which can raise your risk of heart disease and stroke.

Instead of dairy products, choose plant-based alternatives that are lower in fat and calories, and higher in calcium and protein. For example, you can have almond milk, soy cheese, or coconut ice cream.

6. Spicy Foods

Spicy foods such as chili, curry, and salsa can irritate your stomach and cause heartburn, acid reflux, and nausea. They can also raise your body temperature and make you sweat more, which can dehydrate you and affect your electrolyte balance. Spicy foods are not bad for you in moderation, but they are not the best choice after a workout when your digestive system is already sensitive.

Instead of spicy foods, choose mild or bland foods that can soothe your stomach and prevent discomfort. For example, you can have oatmeal, banana, or toast.

7. Raw Vegetables

Raw vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage are high in fiber and water, which can fill you up and hydrate you. However, they can also cause gas, bloating, and cramps for some people, especially if they eat too much or too fast. Raw vegetables are also low in calories and protein, which can leave you hungry and unsatisfied.

Instead of raw vegetables, cook them lightly or steam them to make them easier to digest and absorb. You can also add some protein and healthy fat to your vegetables to make them more balanced and satisfying. For example, you can have roasted vegetables with hummus, or a salad with eggs and avocado.


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  • Use a power keyword in the title. The power keyword is “should”, which implies authority and importance.
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The sources are:

Post-Workout Nutrition: What to Eat After a Workout

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