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13 Foods You Should Never Eat After Your Workout

Are you someone who exercises regularly? Do you wish to start a workout routine on a regular basis? If yes, then there are certain foods that you must never eat after your workout session. It is no secret that having a proper exercise routine can go a long way in keeping up our health.

It is a proven fact that working out or exercising regularly can minimise the risk of several ailments, especially lifestyle disorders like diabetes, obesity, etc. A healthy diet coupled with a regular exercise routine (for the body & the mind) is what every person needs to remain healthy [1].

Post-workout foods are necessary to restore your much-needed energy, to build and repair the torn out muscle tissues and to give a boost in metabolism [2]. Though foods after exercise are necessary, care should be taken that they are chosen correctly and does not spoil all your hard work at the gym.

We have curated a list of foods to avoid after a workout. Reckless eating or in other words mindless munching of food after exercise will in the long run wreck your health.

1. Spicy Foods

After a pretty great workout session in the gym, you may find yourself going towards that pani puri (snack) wala. But, you should know that eating spicy chaats or the likes, after a good exercise session can be bad for health, as your body is still in the process of recovery after the workout and spicy foods can slow that process down and they are hard to be digested [3][4].

2. Soda

The bubbly drink may quench your thirst but will not hydrate your body, which is what you need after a workout session [5]. Drinking soda after a workout can make you bloated as well and is one of the major types of food to avoid after a workout.

3. High Protein Foods

The reason not to have high protein foods is the same as that of spicy foods. They are very hard to digest and it would not give the stomach its much-needed rest after the workout [6]. While lean meat is good post-workout food, heavy meat dishes like steak or meat with too much gravy, spices and oil should be avoided after exercising, as it can slow down metabolism [7].

4. High Fibre Foods

The other major types of foods to avoid after a workout are high fibre foods such as beans, flax seeds, kale etc. Consuming high fibre foods after a workout session can cause cramping, bloating and indigestion [8].

5. Fatty Foods

Anything from oils, seeds, fried foods to nuts should be avoided. Fatty foods can slow down the digestion process and thus cannot replenish the body with the essential nutrients it needs at a quicker pace. Thus it is best to avoid foods rich in fat content after the workouts [9].

6. Raw Vegetables

Although raw vegetables are naturally good for your health, eating them after a workout is not a good choice. After the workouts, the body desperately needs to replenish itself with essential nutrients, minerals and vitamins and raw vegetables do not suffice to fulfil your body requirements [10].

7. Fried Eggs

Fried eggs fall under the list of foods to avoid after a workout as are usually made with oil or butter which are rich in saturated fats. This may be damaging to your health after workouts [11]. The best way to consume eggs is to have it boiled or mix the raw egg with a protein shake [12].

8. Sugary Snacks

Post-workout snacks should be high in carbohydrates and fibre to replenish the much-needed glycogen in your system [13]. Sugary snacks, like pastries, have unhealthy carbohydrates, fats and sugars that might cause a damaging impact on your body [14].

9. Salty Foods

Salty foods like chips are also not a good option to be incorporated into your diet after workouts [15]. Though the ready-made salty foods might be an easier choice to quench your salt cravings, they are, of course, not a healthy snack to be had after exercise since these food items may not replenish the right kind of fats and salts in your body post-workout [16].

10. Chocolate

Chocolates are certainly not a healthy option for a post-workout snack. Especially, when you are trying to lose weight chocolates should not be eaten after a workout. The protein absorption will become slower due to the fat content present in the chocolate [17].

11. Smoothies

Fruit and yoghurt smoothies are fine for a post-workout drink but store-bought smoothie mixes contain a lot of added sugars and should be avoided after your workout session [18]. Drinking sugary drinks like these can stop the fat-burning process. Avoid sports drinks as well.

12. Alcohol

Alcohol will, of course, have damaging effects on your body to have it after the workouts. Alcohol has diuretic effects on your system and cannot contribute, but worsens the muscle recovery process after the workouts [19].

13. Energy Bars

It may sound contradicting because energy bars are after all a part of the workout – right? No, not right. Most energy bars contain a lot of sugar and fat content, so even though they can make you feel energised after a workout, they can create an imbalance in your blood sugar levels [20].