Practicing yoga is the perfect way to stretch and tone your muscles while clearing your mind and relieving stress. In order to get the most out of your practice, nutrition is key. Eating before class is not ideal, but eating and replenishing your body after is necessary!
When getting ready to practice, it’s not recommended to practice on a full stomach. Attending a yoga class with a full belly could cause stomach aches, nausea, and embarrassing gas. The general rule is to stop eating one- two hours before class. This will help alleviate any digestive difficulties. If you’re worried about being hungry, a good pre-workout snack is a small portion of fruit, vegetables, salad or soup. Avoid heavy, slow-digesting meals, high-fiber vegetables, beans, as well as rich or spicy foods. You’ll regret that when you go to invert or twist.
After, is the time to eat, refuel, and replenish your body with nutrients that will fully enhance the effects of your yoga practice.
Here are five tips/snacks that will will keep you fit, full and fueled after class and for the remainder of your day.
After a yoga class,especially hot yoga, make sure you hydrate and restore your electrolytes. This will help avoid dehydration, soreness, and cramping. You should already be drinking at least five to six tall glasses of water a day, and even a few more if you’re working out. You can try infusing your water with cucumbers, lemons or limes to make it more flavorful. Additionally, I love to drink coconut water to help rehydrate. Coconut water is refreshing, natural, and has tons of electrolytes.
Drink a smoothie
Drinking smoothies is one of the best ways to consume more healthy foods both before and after class. They're convenient, simple and save you the time and stress of preparing a full meal.
When making a smoothie try adding leafy greens (i.e. kale or spinach), fruit (fresh or frozen- i.e. blueberries, strawberries, bananas), protein powder (I LOVE Orgain plant protein) and a liquid (i.e. water, coconut water, or almond milk) together, then blend and enjoy. For an extra boost and additional protein, I also like to add PB powder, chai seeds, and/or flax seeds to mine.
I find smoothies to be filling, hydrating and most importantly, easy to make. This post-yoga snack is healthy and satisfying; especially if you have a sweet tooth like me. For more about making smooties, visit: https://www.healthysmoothiehq.com/how-to-make-a-smoothie
Scrambled egg whites and whole-grain toast
Perfect for anyone who practices in the morning. Egg whites contain plenty of protein without the fat from the yolks, and whole-grain breads have complex carbohydrates that will keep your energy high for hours. Maybe even scramble your eggs into an omelet, add your favorite veggies and enjoy. You can even add nut butter (i.e. peanut or almond butter ) onto your whole-grain toast for added protein and “good fats” that keep your heart healthy.
Great for any on-the-go yogi. This is a great snack that’s packed with extra protein and calcium to boost healing.
Skip the plain old garden salad and go for a colorful combo of leafy greens, fruit, and protein (i.e. nuts, chicken, fish, eggs, beans, fruits, and nuts). Not only are these types of salads packed with vitamins, but these enhanced types of salad can also help eliminate toxins, cleanse your body and even give your skin a healthy glow. Eating fresh, natural foods that are high in protein and filled with nutrients will enhance the toning effect of your yoga practice and keep your post-yoga glow going for hours off your mat. For more green salad ideas, visit: http://www.keeperofthehome.org/how-to-make-an-amazing-green-salad
Whatever snack you choose, keep your ingredients fresh and watch your portions in order to ensure the most health benefits possible. Enjoy!