Most people acknowledge that proper nutrition is good for their health but few know exactly how to utilize nutrition to help in areas of sleep, injury recovery, energy/alertness, etc. Yes, there are countless medicines and supplements that can give a quick temporary fix to health problems but none of those will outperform a well rounded proactive lifestyle of exercise and nutrition. In this article we are going to lay out five areas that can significantly benefit from natural foods eaten at specific times.
- Nutrition for General Wellness: It is important to build foundational lifestyle habits that are beneficial to your overall health. Regardless of whether you are trying to lose, gain or maintain weight you can use proper nutrition to get more energy, support your digestive/immune systems and reduce stress. People who build healthy lifestyle habits go much farther than those who jump on yo-yo dieting fads that are not sustainable in the long run.
- Performance Nutrition: It is important to know when to eat what types of foods that give your body what it needs before, during and after competitions or training sessions. Eating the wrong foods at the wrong times or not eating the right foods at the right times can significantly influence an athlete’s focus and energy levels throughout at game or workout. Proper post exercise snacks and meals will also help the body recover and rebuild for the next session.
- Body Composition Nutrition: You can use proper nutrition to optimize body fat % and Lean Body Mass. This helps athletes become more explosive, move better, run faster, and experience less wear and tear on their joint.
- Sleep Quality Nutrition: Some people come to believe that getting good sleep is a lost cause. The truth is, there are multiple ways that you can improve your sleep through nutrition and other lifestyle habits. For instance, there are sleep aid strategies that can help you fall asleep faster, get better quality sleep and not wake up as much in the middle of the night.
- Injury Recovery Nutrition: Often times, when people get injured, they feel like all they can do is rest and wait for the doctor to clear them for normal activities again. There are, in fact, several foods that support recovery by decreasing pain and inflammation and increasing tissue repair in the injured area.
*Always make sure to consult a nutritionist, dietitian or nutrition coach before making any significant changes to your diet.
By Seth Thomas, CSCS, PN1, USAW, XPS