Eating smart is about more than just picking the healthiest food and watching your calorie intake with every meal. It’s important as well to plan your food combinations according to your lifestyle and your daily activities, especially when you are prone to indigestion or other digestion-related discomforts, and when you work out regularly. In this article we’ll take a deeper look at how food combinations can benefit your digestion and your work out.
A few rules to follow for a better digestion
One of the areas on which food combining has the most direct effect is our digestive system. Different combinations of consumed at once can have considerably different effects on our digestion, so paying attention to what types of food you eat at the same time plays an important role in avoiding digestion-related issues.
According to Frances Michaelson, a fitness and health expert and entrepreneur based in Montreal, there are some basis rules to be followed in regard to combining food types for a better digestion. First and foremost she recommends to never combine proteins and complex carbohydrates (meat with potatoes, for example), because the acid enzymes in protein-based foods neutralize the alkaline enzymes contained by starches (complex carbs). This hinders the digestion and results in a bloated feeling.
Michaelson also recommends to never combine fruits with anything, because the sugar from fruits can be immediately digested. If this process is hindered by the presence of other foods that need more time to be digested the fruit will spend an unnecessarily long time in your system and cause digestive problems. Avoid drinking during the meal as well, as fluids will dilute the digestive enzymes.
Food combinations to benefit your work out
What you eat and the way you eat it can have an enormous effect on your work out and its results. The ideal combination for each individual obviously depends on many factors, including body weight, personal intolerances and work out routines, but Sarah Leighton, food and health writer at the Huffington Post, states that there are some basic rules you can follow that can already benefit your work outs.
For those people who are working out with the goal of building muscle the post-exercise nutrition is especially important. During the work out the body will have used glycogen, which can be replenished by consuming carbs afterwards, while the intake of protein is crucial in terms of the reparation and building up of muscles. A decent portion of cottage cheese and blueberries, for example, is full of protein and very low in terms of fat, making it a perfect post-exercise meal. These are foods that you can find in most online supermarkets.