Banana is a great post-workout snack. Sugar in bananas helps replenish muscle glycogen stores, while electrolytes in banana hydrate the body, which in necessary for muscle recovery.
Banana replenishes muscle glycogen stores
Athletes could consume a banana after exercise. It helps replenish muscle glycogen stores. It’s the easiest post-workout snack.
Strenuous exercise can deplete muscle glycogen stores. Try to consume carbs as soon as possible after exercise. High carbohydrate intake can help muscle recover faster after exercise and prevent fatigue. Banana is mainly carbs.
Athletes have high protein needs as well. Even endurance athletes have increased protein needs. As banana has a low protein content, you could drink a high-protein banana smoothie. Save time by freezing bananas in bulk.
Eat a banana after workout to replenish electrolytes
Furthermore, banana is a great post-workout snack because it helps replenish electrolytes. Athletes, active people, and people who sweat a lot should eat many foods high in electrolytes. Electrolyte replenishment is crucial for proper hydration.
The main electrolytes are sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, and magnesium.
Good hydration before, during, and after training is key for fast muscle recovery and athletic performance.[1,2]
For instance, runners have a high risk of electrolyte imbalances, which can cause leg cramps.
Banana is a great dietary source of electrolytes. It contains potassium, calcium, and magnesium.
Banana has negligible amounts of sodium and chloride. But, we can consume high doses from table salt (i.e. sodium chloride).
Ripe bananas are more beneficial after a workout
Banana contains both starch and sugar. The amount of starch and sugar in a banana depends on the ripeness stage. Overripe bananas are higher in sugar, while green bananas are higher in starch.
Athletes should prefer eating ripe or overripe bananas after exercise. Post-workout meals should be rich in simple sugars.
On the other hand, people who follow a sedentary life and want to lose weight better consume green bananas.
Don’t eat banana before exercise
You could consume a banana at least 2-3 hours before a workout. But, you shouldn’t eat a banana right before exercise. Banana is rich in fiber. Fiber can upset the stomach during exercise. Stomach cramps, gas, bloating, and discomfort are common adverse effects.