When you're recovering from an injury, you can simply rest and let the healing process take its time. Or you can come up with a more proactive plan involving exercise and dietary changes.
Eating the right foods and taking the right supplements can actually speed recovery. The body needs more nutrients when it's healing to increase energy levels and rebuild damaged tissue.
Ignoring the importance of fats, proteins and carbohydrates can slow down the healing process and keep you off the field longer. If you consume fast food instead of healthier options, you're really setting yourself up for a slow ride.
Here are some nutritional tips to speed up the healing process.
- Increase the number of times you eat in a day, even if you're not hungry. Your satiety levels may be off because you're less active, but healing is metabolically demanding on your body.
- Increase protein in meals. Protein is important in the recovery of damaged tissue. If you don't want to lose muscle mass, don't skimp on protein.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables. A variety (aim for one cup per serving) will do wonders for your gut.
- Increase your consumption of fats and peanuts for a healthy inflammatory response. On the flip side, reduce your intake of corn, sunflower and soybean oils.
To give your healing diet a boost, try this healthy shake with supplements.
Chocolate Banana Peanut Butter Shake
Combine in blender:
- 5 pieces of ice
- 1/2 cup of almond milk
- 2 tablespoons of peanut butter (omega 3s)*
- 2 scoops of protein (chocolate)
- 1/2 banana
- 5g glutamine (1 scoop)
Supplement tablets: Bromelain (500-1000 mg), turmeric (400-600 mg), multivitamin and/or Vitamin A and C tablets (1g/day)
*If you're allergic to peanut butter, use coconut oil for fat and fish oil for omega 3 fatty acids.
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