Pizza is an easy go-to food loved by people of all ages. With frozen, delivery, take-out, bake at home and gourmet options, pizza fits just about any occasion. While an occasional indulgence in commercial pizza is okay, if it is a regular feature in your diet, you may want to reconsider your choices. Pizza can be a healthy option, if you avoid the greasy, refined-flour and processed meat versions. So I came across this infographic on visual.ly and thought it was a great piece of content to not only share but breakdown a bit because there is some really great stuff in here but a few questionable items as well. So lets dive right in and break each one down.
Egg Omelette –
Just like the infographic says eggs are a great source of high quality protein, with also some fat in there to balance out your macro nutrient ratios. However depending on what type of workout you had this may not be enough to properly refuel and recover. Especially if it was a more intense weight training, HIIT , or athletic performance based session. Also this choice can depend on the food style you are eating by. For example this wouldn’t be a choice for vegans but for someone eating a more paleo style plan this would be great just throw in some vegetables on top and you are set. For most people that do not care what style to eat and just want to see results, I suggest throwing in a ratio of 1 fruit for every 1 vegetable you consume to add some sugar to the equation for your muscles to soak in but also having some nutrient rich veggies with it to make sure your body also has the vitamins and minerals it needs not just the carbs, fats and proteins.
Cottage Cheese –
Cottage cheese’s muscle-building powers come from two different components. Cottage cheese contains a high proportion of casein, the slow-digesting dairy protein. When you eat casein, your blood amino acid levels rise slowly and stay elevated for longer than if you would have eaten whey (the other dairy protein). Cottage cheese also contains live cultures—also known as good bacteria—that will help you break down and absorb all the nutrients you need to get bigger and stronger. – Reference
Apple & Peanut butter –
When you’re trying to stay healthy, lose weight and get in great shape, it can be difficult to determine which snacks are healthy and which aren’t. Apples with peanut butter are actually a very healthy snack to eat any time of the day. Although apples with peanut butter is a snack that is high in calories and fat, it is nothing you need to be concerned about as long as you choose natural peanut butter over regular. –Reference
Cheese & crackers –
When you’re eating on the go, crackers and cheese offer a convenient and filling snack option. They help you consume your grain allowance for the day — 3 ounces for women or 3.5 ounces for men, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture — and also contribute to the 3 cups of dairy you should consume each day. Crackers and cheese contain some beneficial nutrients, but they also have some nutritional drawbacks that might keep them from being a healthy addition to your diet. – Reference
Whole Wheat Bagel with Peanut Butter –
Similar to apple and peanut butter however a whole wheat bagel with peanut butter is slightly more beneficial specifically as a post workout meal. The higher concentration of complex carbs combined with the fats and protein from the peanut butter makes for a more powerful recovery meal.
Dried Fruits & Nuts
Go to the bulk bin section of any health food store and you’ll see a plethora of dried fruit and nut combos, from trail mix to tropical mix to high-octane energy mix. For healthier options, look for mixes that include just fruit and nuts. Some trail mixes, such as gorp, contain chocolate. You also want to select a mix that doesn’t have any added salt to help keep your sodium intake to the recommended 1,500 milligrams a day.
Caution: Energy Dense
Although the calories vary depending on your choice of mix, a 1/3-cup serving of dried fruit and nuts can have 130 to 190 calories, making it a calorie-dense snack choice. Eating more calories than you need leads to weight gain. To help keep calories under control when snacking on dried fruit and nuts, don’t eat from the container. Instead, preparation your mix into 1/3-cup servings. – Reference
Have you ever wondered why your child’s coach tells young athletes to drink chocolate milk after a hard practice? It may sound a bit strange, but actually, chocolate low-fat milk has been shown to help young athletes recover needed nutrition.
10 Benefits of chocolate low-fat milk for recovery:
Fluid and electrolytes for hydration
Protein source for muscle repair
Carbohydrate source to replenish energy stores for the next practice
Chocolate in the milk boosts the carbohydrate supplied to your muscles and liver
Low cost replenishing option
Often available in the school cafeteria
Quick and potentially portable
For some athletes, it may be easier to tolerate a beverage versus food shortly after a workout
Replenishes necessary vitamins
It tastes great and kids typically love to drink chocolate milk
Using milk as a recovery fuel will also boost your athlete’s calcium and vitamin D intake. You might be surprised to know that vitamin D deficiency among our children is becoming increasingly more common. Vitamin D deficiency can have a serious effect on growing bones and bone strength later in life.
Are fancy recovery powders and beverages better than milk?
Not necessarily. While they are almost always more expensive than milk, some products contain more than you bargained for, including caffeine, herbs, mega doses of vitamins and even contaminants such as melamine and lead. If you find that your athlete prefers one of these supplement beverages, be sure to read the label and choose wisely.
Alternatives to cow milk
Finally, if your child is milk allergic or intolerant other milks are available. Examples of these include fortified soy or almond milk. However, additional protein is needed to match that of cow’s milk. This can be supplied by a small handful of nuts, for example.
So, the next time you pick up your athlete after a long practice and dinner is still over an hour away, think about bringing him or her a 8-12 ounces of cold chocolate low-fat milk for the ride home. Their muscles will appreciate it. -Reference
This is not the full article but I wanted to share it with the hopes it is helpful while also getting some feedback on what everyone thinks.