Gulping water down after an exercise session is fine for most people. However, if you are an endurance athlete – someone who is training for a marathon and running in the hot sun – you need to put more effort into replenishing the minerals that are flushed out of your body through your sweat.
Yes, you can get your electrolytes from standard energy bars and sports drinks, but many times, these are also accompanied by added sugar. However, there’s another way to help ensure you are getting more electrolytes – eat them.
Different foods include many electrolytes, vitamins, and health-protective compounds. Keep reading to learn about some key electrolytes your body needs and the whole and healthy foods you can eat to replace them.
When it comes to being healthy, you’re usually told to say “no” to sodium; however, this is the electrolyte that you lose the most of when you are sweating. Salt is what helps your body hold on to water, helping you stay hydrated much longer. While this is true, it doesn’t mean you need to consume an entire bag of pretzels after you work out.
You can replace the sodium you lose during an hour-long workout by eating a snack that consists of peanut butter on a bagel and chocolate milk. As an athlete, you can also eat a salty meal, such as soup, before you begin working out. This is going to prepare your body to retain more fluid and ensure you remain hydrated throughout your exercise session.
Usually paired with sodium, this is found in table salt, along with processed foods, such as potato chips, canned soup, condiments, and various deli meats. Like salt, it’s usually not something that a person consuming the typical American diet is going to be short on.
Chloride is essential for maintaining body fluid pH levels, blood pressure, blood balance, and fluid balance. It’s also lost in large amounts in your sweat. To replenish chloride, avoid the snack food aisle and choose other sources, such as celery, lettuce, tomatoes, rye, seaweed, and olives.
If you are searching for a portable and potassium-rich snack for after your workout, consider dried or fresh fruit, such as prunes, raisins, melons, or oranges. After spending an hour working out, you may lose up to 600 mg of potassium, which is needed for heart and cell function, prevention of kidney stones, and helps with muscle contraction.
One of the best and fastest ways to restore depleted potassium levels is by eating a medium or large banana. Some of the other foods that are full of potassium include avocado, beans, peas, kale, and spinach, along with sweet and baked potatoes.
While milk may not seem like the best thing to drink after an intense workout, this beverage, which is rich in calcium, does a much better job than any sports drink or water at rehydrating your body after working out.
Why, you may wonder? Because milk can deliver a mix of potassium, sodium, calcium, and carbohydrates, as well as a quality protein, which helps with your muscle recovery. You should try to eat foods rich in calcium, such as cereal each day.
Stay Hydrated and Healthy
While remaining hydrated while you are working out is essential, you can’t forget about your electrolytes. Make sure that you are replenishing your electrolytes to avoid any serious health issues. If you aren’t using the foods here yet for this purpose, make sure you begin to do so, as it is going to help you recover faster and see better results.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE: