What You Must Eat After Exercising
Let’s face it, movement is important for the body. We need to get some exercise in order to be healthy. But have you ever given much thought to what you eat after excercising?
According to a new study it's equally important. In fact, together excercise and your post-excercise food choices can create the perfect platform for building your optimal natural health.
Surprisingly, it turns out that what you eat after exercising can actually affect all the effort you did before. What you choose to eat will have different effects on the body’s metabolism.
The study found that exercise enhanced insulin sensitivity, particularly when meals eaten after the exercise session were low in carbohydrates.
When you have enhanced insulin sensitivity, it is easier for the body to move sugar from the blood into tissues where it is stored or used as fuel. When that insulin sensitivity is impaired, it is a hallmark of type 2 diabetes.
The study included nine healthy sedentary men who underwent four sessions on a treadmill or stationary bike that lasted about 30 hours.
1. No exercise, and meals matched their daily calorie expenditure. This was the control trial.
2. Exercise for 90 minutes at moderate intensity. After, meals matched the calories they just burned, with carefully balanced carbohydrates, fats, and protein.
3. The same as number two, except they ate meals afterward with relatively low carbohydrate content. But here they still ate enough total calories to match what they burned off.
4. The same as number three, but the low-calorie meals provided less energy than what was burned off. The food here had one-third fewer calories than the other sessions. This session had relatively high carbohydrate content to replace those burned off.
Each exercise session tended to increase insulin sensitivity.
However, the study found that depriving yourself of calories after exercising…not eating a lot…didn’t improve insulin sensitivity any more than when you don’t worry that much about calories. (In other words, you don’t have to starve yourself after exercise to still reap some of the important health benefits.) But, it turns out, that eating fewer carbohydrates did have a significant positive effect.
The results of the study showed that you can still reap some important health benefits from exercise even without under-eating or shedding pounds.
Plus, it reinforced the idea that each exercise session can affect the body’s physiology. In other words, every workout counts. Don’t get give up if you haven’t exercised in a while.
About the author
Dr. Victor Marchione received his Bachelor of Science Degree in 1973 and his Medical Degree from the University of Messina in 1981. He has been licensed and practicing medicine in New York and New Jersey for over 20 years.
Dr. Marchione is a respected leader in the field of smoking cessation and pulmonary medicine. He has been featured on ABC News and World Report, CBS Evening News with Dan Rather and the NBC Today Show and is the editor of the popular The Food Doctor newsletter.
Dr. Marchione has also served as Principal Investigator in at least a dozen clinical research projects relating to serious ailments such as bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).