Do you immediately reach for protein powder after a workout? STOP. Next time reach for real food sources of the essential macronutrient. Real food = better fuel and better recovery. No need to buy expensive, processed supplements when nature has everything for you!
Everyone knows it’s important to get in adequate nutrition after a tough workout. Protein is especially crucial if you’ve lifted heavy or done an intense cardio session. Most people tend to reach for a protein shake or protein bars as their go-to post-workout supplement. For a long time, these types of snacks have been touted as the best form of recovery after a workout, but current research is showing something quite different. While it’s still key to get protein in post-workout, it’s even better to get it from real food sources rather than bars, powders, or shakes.
Protein powders are chemically isolated. It’s changed from its natural state and thus our body does not know how to properly absorb and utilize it in the best way possible. In addition, protein powders have an exorbitantly high amount of protein in proportion to their fat content. Protein cannot be properly used by the body without adequate fat intake and thus consuming just protein after a workout is not efficient and can actually cause harm to your body in the form of vitamin depletion.
So what is an athlete or avid gym goer supposed to do for their post-workout protein? Well, we’ve got 5 real food alternatives that not only deliver a great source of protein for your nutritional needs but also contain a host of other vitamins and minerals that protein powders lack. It’s a fallacy that protein requirements cannot be met thru real food options and this list proves that!
Eggs, especially hardboiled ones are easy to make in bulk and great for a post workout nosh! When you eat the yolk and the white together you’re getting a complete source of protein as well as healthy omega 3 fatty acids and good cholesterol.
If you still want to make a shake or drink of some sort, collagen powder is a great alternative to protein powder. It’s not heavily processed like traditional supplements and has an amazing amino acid profile. Collagen contains high levels of glycine and is one of the few sources of PURE protein on the planet.
My favorite kind of collagen to use is Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides. These peptides are sourced from grass-fed, pasture-raised cattle hides to ensure the nutrients maintain their naturalness, high quality, and sustainability. They have a WHOPPING 18 grams of protein per serving!
What I love about the Vital Proteins variety especially is that they are so easily digested and totally soluble in cold or hot liquids. You can’t taste them or even detect them in anything you mix them into! So you’re getting amazing, ancient nutrients without even knowing it! Some of my favorite ways to use it are to add it to smoothies, stir into oatmeal or sauces, or even simply putting a scoop in my morning coffee. Like I said, no taste…but tons of bio-available protein to help your skin, hair, tendon, cartilage, bones, and joints. Pretty amazing! And a MUCH better option than standard protein powder.
Cheese contains that crucial mix of protein and fats you need after a workout. Not only is it tastier than a chalky protein powder, but it also contains calcium for your bones and saturated fats for vitamin and mineral absorption. Reach for organic, raw, or grass-fed cheeses whenever possible!
Sardines are an incredible source of protein. 1 ounce contains over 7 grams of real food protein as well as a ton of omega 3 fatty acids so that protein is properly absorbed. They also help reduce inflammation in your muscles and can decrease soreness. Mix them with plain greek yogurt, dill, lemon, juice, white balsamic vinegar, and Dijon mustard for a quick n’ delicious seafood salad!
Whole Grain Toast with Peanut Butter
After a hard sweat sesh it’s important to refuel with carbs as well. By pairing toast with peanut butter you’re getting complex carbohydrates, plant-based protein, and healthy fats. This key mix of nutrients is perfect for muscle-building and replenishing glycogen stores.
Whole, real foods are more nutritionally dense than protein powders. They also take longer to consume and are thus more satisfying. To maximize the effects of your workout, make your next post-workout meal full of real food as opposed to processed protein powders or bars!
Do you use protein powder after a workout?
What are your favorite sources of protein?
Have you ever had collagen peptides before?
Leah Peters is a certified Fitness & Nutrition consultant with over 5 years of experience in the health industry. With a degree in Mass Communications and Health Promotions, she strives to improve an individuals quality of life by transforming not only their bodies but also their outlook on life. She focuses on healthy habit development, emotional freedom, balanced exercise and nutritious food intake. Her programs are tailored to you personally after an in depth questionnaire and designed to ensure your success every step of the way to reach your ultimate fitness goal.
Guess what?! For the next month all of her consultations will only be $20.00 and she’ll be donating 10% of all proceeds to Team 261 Fearless!!! How sweet is that!? So if you’ve been looking to change your life, take your diet and fitness regimen to the next level, and be the best you possible….Leah can help! Get more info here.Stay connected:Subscribe to Healthy HelperFacebook: Healthy HelperTwitter: @Healthy_HelperInstagram: HealthyHelperPinterest: Healthy_HelperBloglovin’: Healthy HelperGoogle+: Healthy HelperTumblr: Healthy Helper BlogSnapchat: KailaProulxWant to get FREE products for review and make money as a blogger? Check out Linqia!
Linking up with: Allergy Free Wednesdays, #RecipeOfTheWeek,#StrangeButGood,Real Food Friday, Gluten-Free Fridays,Tasty Tuesdays,Savoring Saturdays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Tasty Tuesdays, Meatless Mondays,Full Plate Thursday, JillConyers,Meatless Mondays!