5 Top Autumn Foods for Runners
Written By: SportsShoes
The nights are drawing in and the temperatures are getting cooler, but your nutrition options are getting better. Make the most of the autumn harvest with these great foods for runners.
Apples An apple a day…there’s a reason behind that old saying. Apples provide 4.4g of dietary fibre per serving, and are packed with vitamins and anti-oxidants, including the powerful Quercetin. There’s evidence that eating 5 or more apples a week can help to improve lung function, and that ursolic acid found in apple skins can also help to increase calorie burn. But remember, all this goodness is mostly contained in the skin…so put that peeler away.
Probably not your first choice of vegetable, but think again. A half cup of Brussel sprouts contains more than your daily recommended intake of Vitamin K, essential for a healthy cardiovascular system and strong bones. They’re also a good source of iron and full of glucosinolates which destroy cancer causing agents - your mum was really onto something when she told you to eat up your sprouts.
Not only good for making lanterns out of, pumpkins contain more than 20% of your DRI of fibre and are rich in potassium – important to runners in helping balance fluids, aiding healthy circulation, regulating your heartbeat and helping prevent the dreaded cramp. A serving also contains more than 20% of your daily recommended intake of fibre and is a great source of Vitamin B. Its sweet taste and moist texture makes it perfect for soups, pies and even cakes…the possibilities for post-training snacks are endless.
Baked, roasted or mashed, sweet potatoes not only taste good, but are full of nutrients. Super high in vitamin A, and packed with anti oxidants and anti inflammatory properties, sweet potatoes are great for aiding recovery. They’re also an excellent source of iron, with a higher potassium content than bananas, and high in dietary fibre. Try sweet potato and red pepper pasta for the perfect post-workout dinner.
Loaded with essential nutrients including Vitamin A, C and E, potassium and iron, pomegranates are also acclaimed as a super-food for good reason. Rich in natural phenols (the health boosting phytonutrients also found in green tea and olive oil) pomegranates have been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years. Of particular benefit to runners is the presence of ellagitannin, found to help reduce the inflammation that causes soreness and weakness, easing muscle pain, and boosting recovery and performance. A 150ml glass of pomegranate juice is enough to make up one of your 5-a-day, or alternatively sprinkle the seeds on cold dishes and salads for an extra nutrient boost.
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