Healthy Runner’s Diet

running vegetable_webMost runners’ take in enough calories and nutrients, but the problem is the form. Most will consume energy bars, nutrient-enhanced drinks, and packaged foods to meet their demand. When real foods such as fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean meats are much better for you! If you follow these five rules every day, your body will get everything it needs for better running and better health.

  1. Eat foods made from seeds – Eating a diet that includes plant seeds (whole grains, beans, tree nuts, etc) has been shown to improve health and maintain a healthier body weight. Eating whole grains and beans can also lower ones risk for developing type 2 diabetes and even some cancers.
  2. Eat five different colored fruits and vegetables daily – Fruits and vegetables supply your body with vitamins and minerals. They also fill you up with little calories, which can help maintain body weight. To get the most out of your produce, you need to make sure you are consuming a variety of colors. They are many pigments in the produce aisle and each offers its own health benefit.
  3. Eat foods with skin intact – Skins protect fruits and vegetables from parasites, UV lights, and other invaders. Therefore, these skins are filled with a wide range of phytochemicals that can protect your health. Skins are also rich in fiber and resistant starches. This can help curb appetite and help with weight control.
  4. Consume milk products that come from animals – Dairy will supply a runner’s muscles with protein which will help speed recovery. Animal milk also offers whey protein which can help strengthen the immune system. Research also suggests that consuming dairy products can lower your blood pressure and risk for heart disease.
  5. Consume meat, poultry, and eggs from free-range or grass-fed animals – By eating these products, runners will easily meet their protein needs and take in the crucial minerals that are hard to get from non-animal sources. Grass-fed and free-range animals also tend to contain more omega-3 fats and less saturated fat due to their healthier diets.