Thursday, February 27, 2014

11 Top Minimally Processed Foods for Runners

by Alissa Costello

Sweet Potatoes
A highly nutritious source of carbohydrate. It’s packed with beta-carotene and potassium which both promote recovery. Also contains manganese which may improve performance since it is essential for healthy muscle function.
Convenient  form of protein that contains all the amino acids the body needs to rebuild the muscle that is broken down during exercise.
Black beans
Powerful trio of fiber rich carbs, protein and antioxidants. Carbs fuel your run, while protein and antioxidants promote muscle recovery.
Provides omega-3 fats which counteract inflammation and promote recovery.
Studies have shown that the high amounts of  antioxidants and vitamins in berries  help stave off soreness after a hard workout.
Great source of protein and a high dose of calcium to keep stress fractures at bay. Bonus: may promote fat loss, especially in the tummy area.
Perfect pre-run, high carb snack, straight from nature. High in potassium which is important in balancing electrolytes and may protect you from getting leg cramps.
Lean beef
Runners have a higher blood volume than most which makes their their iron stores deplete faster. The body also loses iron through sweating. Iron deficiency = zero energy to run. Keep your levels up by eating lean beef, one of the best sources of complete iron. Whenever possible, choose organic, grass fed beef for the most nutritional bang for your bite.
Almond butter
Spread on toast or veggies for perfect combo of carb, protein and healthy fats. Bonus: Almonds are high in Vitamin E which studies have shown help prevent muscle soreness.
It’s a healthy carbohydrate that also provides muscle building protein. Not only that, but it also contains the 8 amino acids that the body requires to put that protein to good use.
Studies have shown that caffeine boosts performance, endurance and recovery. In the form of black coffee you’ll also get a nearly calorie free dose of powerful antioxidants.


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