What Do You Eat After Exercising?

Written by Kelsey Conyers
Part of National Nutrition Month 2014

Do you know what to eat after exercising? Too often people assume that all the healthy foods taste bad, but there are a variety of delicious foods that are actually beneficial to consume after exercising. Do you know how important it is to eat well after you exercise? If you don’t refuel your body after working out you can feel weak, dizzy or even sick. Eating right is easier than you think.

The Academy selected the theme “Enjoy the Taste of Eating Right” and this year’s National Nutrition Month’s campaign specifically focused on developing sound eating and physical activity habits. Not only is eating right fun and scrumptious, but healthy eating habits are more vital when your physical activity increases.

Tips to help you accomplish sound eating and exercise habits:

  • What is your favorite activity? One goal could be to do that activity three times a week for 30 minutes.
  • Schedule a weekly routine to make sure you set aside time for physical activities
  • Monitor your goals by recording your food intake and exercise activities.

How do you refuel your tank? Your focus should be to drink fluids and eat carbohydrates and protein. Carbohydrates are needed to refuel your muscles and protein aids in muscle repair and growth. These foods are good for you and you might even like the taste. Who doesn’t like chocolate milk? There are a plethora of tasty foods to help your body recover after a workout.

bread peanut butter banana

Image by Kelsey Conyers

Suggested post-workout foods

  • Low-fat chocolate milk
  • Peanut butter banana sandwich
  • Eggs (hard boiled or scrambled with whole wheat toast)
  • Whole-grain pita and hummus
  • Nuts with dried fruit
  • Baked or sweet potato
  • Greek yogurt
  • Smoothie
  • Fruit

These are only a few suggestions that you can try. Please share your favorite post-exercise food!


Food as fuel – before, during and after workouts. (2013, March 22). Retrieved from

Irazusta , A., Gil, S., & Ruiz, F. (2006). Exercise, physical fitness, and dietary habits of first-year female nursing students. Biological Research for Nursing, 7, Retrieved from

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