Poor dietary options can invalidate all the efforts you put in the gym. This is the transformative power of food, and it can either work for you, or against you. Understanding how your body responds to certain foods is critical in keeping your digestive system, and by extension, your entire body happy. If you remain indifferent, you might cause an upset that will culminate in inflammation which might cause a deviation from your fitness goals.
Our genetic predispositions make us capable or incapable of digesting some foods. For instance, some bodybuilders are unable to produce lactase, the enzyme that breaks down lactose into glucose. This results in lactase intolerance, or the inability to digest dairy products. Milk is one of these so called inflammatory foods. Others include processed foods, white flour, potatoes and hot peppers.
The process of leaning which foods you can tolerate and those you can’t is mostly trial and error. If you notice an unsettling feeling in your stomach after eating something, take note, and cut it from your diet. It could be something unlikely, like tomatoes or peanuts. Sometimes, it could be a protein supplement. You will have some flatulence, bloating and might experience some pain in your midsection. This is how you know a food is bad for you. Taking plenty of water is recommended in such a situation. It might not alleviate the symptoms immediately, but it will slowly but surely bring you some relief.
The problem with these foods is they add insult to injury. Weight lifting causes inflammation through the microtears it causes in your muscles. Taking foods that don’t agree with you delays your recovery, and derails you from your fitness goals.
Consulting a nutritionist proves to be a big help, if the problem is significant enough to need professional address.
There is a way you can circumvent whatever digestive deficiencies you may have. For instance, with milk, you can take lactase enzyme supplements beforehand.
You can also add more anti-inflammatory foods to your diet. Ginger, garlic and beets have been shown to have strong, helpful anti-inflammatory properties. Pineapples, apples, cherries, and spinach are other foods that should feature heavily in your meal plans. Freshly squeezed fruit juices are good too. While they may not undo any inflammatory setback you suffer from other foods, the will help your muscles recover faster from intensive workouts.
Your diet is unarguably the most important part of your fitness ambitions. It is imperative that you take the time to learn all you can about the foods you should eat, and should not.
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