3 Post-workout Veggie Meals for Muscle Recovery

3 Post-workout Veggie Meals for Muscle Recovery

Our muscles are prone to microscopic tears during exercise. These tears later get ‘refilled’ as they heal, slowly building muscle mass. This natural recovery process is called anabolism. As our muscles adapt to new movements we’re likely to feel tenderness and aches – what we commonly call Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS). This period of discomfort is a great opportunity to give our body essential and well-deserved treats in the form of protein, carbohydrates and minerals. Here are five yummy post-workout veggie meals for muscle recovery.
1. Protein Power: White Bean Lemon Salad
Use fresh mint instead of basil for another tasty Mediterranean flavour!

White beans have some of the highest protein contents per serving (one cup) though rarely used in home kitchens as they’re not always to everyone’s taste. This doesn’t mean white beans can’t be delicious, of course, so we’re sharing with you one of the best white bean salad recipes we’ve ever tried, cheers to SoCal food blogger Dorothy Reinhold. (Recipe has been modified.)

What you need:

  • 2 tins of (400g) white beans (cannellini / butter beans) – drained, rinsed, drained again
  • 330g of cherry tomatoes – halved
  • 1 small courgette or cucumber – sliced thinly
  • 2 small radishes – stemmed and sliced thinly
  • 1 bunch of fresh basil
  • 1 clove of garlic – minced
  • 3 ½ tablespoons of lemon or lime juice
  • 3 ½ tablespoons of olive oil
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of cracked black pepper

What to do:

  1. Place the white beans into a large bowl and add everything else – tomatoes through black pepper, and mix well but gently with a large spoon.
  2. Taste and adjust lemon juice and salt level to your liking.
  3. Serve immediately or refrigerate for later.

Serves 4-5 people for dinner, or more for a side salad

2. Slow-burning Carb: Sweet Potato and Spinach Frittata
Use kale instead of spinach as another healthy variation!

Sweet potatoes are high-fiber carbohydrates as opposed to simple carbs such as pasta and white bread, which break down quicker. Because high-fiber carbs burn slower, they provide the muscles just enough insulin to sustain energy. Here’s a quick and easy recipe with the added goodness of spinach (calcium, iron, potassium, heaps of other nourishing stuff). Great for breakfast, lunch and/or dinner.

What you need:

  • Half kilo of orange sweet potatoes – peeled, sliced
  • 6 large free-range eggs or 8 small ones
  • 100g (or more) of baby spinach
  • 1 onion – sliced
  • ½ cup of parmesan cheese – grated
  • 100ml of single cream
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • A pinch of salt
  • A pinch of cracked black pepper

What to do:

  1. Whisk eggs in a bowl. Add the single cream then add in the parmesan. Season with salt and pepper as you like and whisk the mix again, lightly
  2. Lay the sweet potatoes in a microwave-safe dish and cover with a wet paper towel. Microwave on high for two minutes
  3. Lightly heat a deep frypan on the hob and add olive oil. When hot, add in the onions and lightly fry. Add in the sweet potatoes and cook until they’re soft. Add in the baby spinach leaves and cook until they’re wilted. Evenly pour in the whisked egg mixture into the pan.
  4. Put the pan into the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until set and top is golden, at 200C / 180C fan / gas 6
  5. Stand for 5 minutes before dishing up.

Serves 4-6 people for dinner

3. Iodine Top Up: Arame Carrot Dish
Mushrooms are packed with health benifits experiment by using different types!

Now here’s something you probably rarely (or don’t) think of eating: seaweed. Sea veggies are rich in iodine which comes from the same family of minerals as magnesium and calcium, and it is used by nearly every tissue in the body as an antioxidant, an antiviral, a cortisol moderator, a sleep agent, an estrogen controller and a bouncer for unruly toxic metals such as mercury, bromine and flouride’ (3) Arame are finely cut strips of seaweed similar to kombu and are both often used in Japanese cuisine. Not only is it rich in iodine, it also packs a lot of magnesium and Vitamin A. It’s a versatile ingredient that can be used in soups, salads and sautéed veggies. Here’s one of our favourite arame recipes.

What you need:

  • ½ cup of arame
  • 3-5 carrots – cut into chunky sticks (or anyhow you like)
  • 5-6 Shitake mushrooms
  • 2-3 tablespoon of tamari
  • ½ tablespoon of fresh ginger – grated

What to do:

  1. Soak the arame in water in a pot for 10 minutes and cover
  2. Boil the arame and add in the grated ginger plus tamari until most of the water has evaporated.
  3. Sautée the shitake mushrooms
  4. Blanch the carrots in a separate pot in the meantime.
  5. Add in the blanched carrots in the arame pot and cover until tender.
  6. Cool for a bit and serve.

Feeds 2-3 people.

Further reading
1 – http://www.shockinglydelicious.com/white-bean-cilantro-chopped-vegetable-salad/ 2 – http://www.musclebuildingfoodshq.com/muscle-foods-sweet-potato/ 3 – http://www.muscleandperformance.com/article/the-impact-of-iodine
Related topics
Yoga Formula Series: OptiMSM

Yoga Formula Series: OptiMSM

In this series we explore the ingredients in Natural Alchemy’s Yoga Formula – why they are good for the yogi, where they come from and what research has been done to support the merits of each ingredient.

What is MSM and OptiMSM?

Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is a biologically active sulphur compound that is naturally present in fresh raw vegetables, fruits and grains. It also exists in live animals and humans.

It cannot however be extracted or cultivated from its host and requires a chemical process for it to be reproduced outside a living organism. (1)

MSM was discovered in a lab experiment in the late 1970s / early 1980s by American chemists Stanley Jacob and Robert Herschler. It has since been used to improve joint health, relieve inflammation, aid in the recovery of muscle damage and support liver functions.

OptiMSM is produced by Bergstrom Nutrition – an ISO certified dietary supplement company in the United States. OptiMSM goes through the same chemical process as all other MSM supplements but have become a widely trusted brand through their purification process that puts MSM in a four-stage distillation process that ‘removes heavy