So you have finally taken the plunge and signed up for regular yoga classes but are you aware of the foods you should be taking before and after your classes? To reap more benefits, you have to also stick to the right diet. What you eat before and after each session can have a huge impact on your body. This International Yoga Day, we share with you some helpful tips that will help your body make the most of the yoga session. Sucheta Pal, Ambassador & Education Specialist, Zumba LLC, shares some simple tips.
Coffee: good or bad?
BKS Iyengar, one of the foremost yoga teachers in the world, advises in his book Light on Yoga to practice your asanas on an empty stomach (ideally after bathing and moving your bowels). But also mentions that if you find it difficult to proceed with your practice on an empty stomach, you can have a cup of coffee, cocoa or milk.
Fruit + protein
Anything heavy should be avoided in the two hours before you plan to do yoga. Instead, have something light. You can rely on healthy plant-based nibbles instead of carb load. Fruit and protein will help you carry through your session. Have a piece of high fiber fruit along with a high protein ingredient. You can have an apple with some nut butter or a bowl of berries with yoghurt. Banana is another option as it contains soluble fiber which digests slowly and won’t spike your blood sugar. Bananas and their natural sugars will help sustain you through your workout practice, simply pair it with yoghurt.
Nuts and dry fruits
Munch on a handful of almonds as a pre-yoga session snack. Almonds are rich in vitamin E, potassium and magnesium, they give your muscles strength and power. Just ensure that you have plain and unsalted ones. You can also have raisins, they are a great source of natural sugar that will give you energy. If you don't like raisins you can also have prunes or apricots.
The buttery green fruit, avocado, is a favourite among a lot of yogis. Avocados contain electrolytes like magnesium and potassium which makes it a perfect pre-workout snack. They are nutrient-dense and most of the fat in avocados helps to lower bad cholesterol and promote lean muscle growth.
After yoga, it is essential to replenish the fluids you may have lost during class through both sweat and breathing. Drink at least one bottle of water followed by a small snack of fresh fruit or whole grain bread or Greek yoghurt, fruits and dry fruits. If you plan to have a meal, include whole grain, beans, legumes and lean protein. Sticking to a healthy meal will leave you feeling energised.
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