Sometimes, it’s nice to feel a little sore after a good workout. It feels like you’ve accomplished your goals and you have something to show for it. But sometimes, your muscles are so sore that you can barely get through the day, let alone do another workout. After exercising, try eating these foods to help sooth sore muscles. You’ll be much more likely to stick to your exercise routine if you’re not in pain.
- Blueberries, cherries and dark fruits – studies have found that eating these dark fruits can help reduce delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and recuperate strength faster. Plus, tart cherries have the added benefit of melatonin so your body can get better rest post-workout.
- Leafy greens and cruciferous vegetables – you know they’re full of nutrients, but they also help improve the metabolic process, reduce inflammation and fight free radicals that can slow the recovery process. Research also suggests that leafy greens can lower levels of the stress hormone, cortisol, after training.
- Cod and salmon – fish is full of the healthy omega-3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA. They are among the best for recovery since they have anti-inflammatory effects. Omega-3’s have also been shown to reduce muscle soreness.
- Almonds and nuts – nuts can help accelerate repair of damaged tissue. Almonds are an excellent source of omega-6 fatty acids that have performed very well in aiding recuperation after intense exercise. Brazil nuts are another powerhouse choice since they contain a trifecta of the minerals selenium, magnesium and zinc, which are essential for hormone balance and recovery.
- Fermented foods – if your gut isn’t functioning properly, your body will take longer to recover following exercise. A diet rich in fiber and probiotics can help ensure full absorption of nutrients needed for tissue repair as well as eliminate oxidative stress and reduce inflammation.
- Cinnamon – a study of women martial arts athletes found that taking 3 grams of cinnamon powder with food helped significantly reduce delayed onset muscle soreness.