We all know that some snacks offer more nutrients to our body when compared to other choices. As tempting as brownies may be after a long run, sadly, they won’t do anything to improve our body.
However, along with brownies and other indulgent sweets, surprisingly, bananas sometimes appear among the list of unfavorable snacks. Due to their high sugar content, many doctors actually recommend staying away from bananas for those looking to watch their weight , but have you ever wondered why it is likely to see vendors give away bananas for free to runners after a race? Research suggests that these vendors might be on to something–the right time to eat a banana may be after a workout.
So, the question is: Is eating a banana right after a race an exception to the rule, or should we still avoid this sugary fruit?
As stated on a health and wellness website, Live Strong, it is recommended by the American Dietetic Association to “have a nutritious snack within 15 minutes to one hour after rigorous exercise.” By eating a nourishing snack, your body has the chance to replenish and recover after your workout. The snack you choose, however, is important. Eating some cookies or ice-cream as a “reward” after a tough workout will not only likely make you feel sick, but it also won’t give your body any of the healing nutrients it needs.
Live Strong states that a banana is a perfect post-work out snack “because it’s rich in potassium, magnesium and fast-working carbohydrates and it’s especially beneficial after a jog, when coupled with a source of protein.” While a banana by its self is a good choice, when paired with a protein, such as peanut butter, experts agree that it is a power snack.
SEE ALSO Eat Bananas For A Mood Boost!
On a health and fitness website, Fitness Magazine, Kristin Reisinger, MS, RD, a sports nutritionist states that after a workout is “‘one of the only times I recommend a high-glycemic carbohydrate source such as banana’ […because…] It’ll replenish your energy quickly.” Eating foods that are high-glycemic results in an increase in the body’s blood glucose levels which, after a workout, will help replenish your body. Live Strong explains that one of the reasons behind choosing a banana is due to its high content of potassium. Live Strong says “if you don’t replace lost potassium and you become deficient, you could get muscle cramps,” which is why runners should eat a banana after a long run. If you have the time, Fitness Magazine suggests to whip up “a protein shake made from whey protein, water, and half a banana” to enjoy after finishing a run. Either way, be sure to snack on a banana to optimize your workout.
Verdict: Fact. Eating a banana after a workout is a beneficial in restoring the body. Lucky for us, bananas are available during all seasons and, when paired with protein, has been proven to help restore our body after a workout. Whether you combine it with a rice cake and some peanut butter, or blend it with yogurt, consider incorporating a banana into your post-workout snack. Your body will thank you!
For more on Food & Fitness, check out our articles here.
What are you thoughts on banana post workout snacks?