5 Best Food Fuels Runners Should Add To Their Diet

by Jillian See
FOOD  |  May 23, 2018
  • These foods have key nutrients to supplement a runner’s diet.
    1 / 6 These foods have key nutrients to supplement a runner’s diet.

    As a runner, you’re probably conscious of what goes into your tummy. You know not to overeat, and which sinful deep-fried snacks to avoid. As healthy as your diet seems, it could be lacking in certain nutrients, and that will hinder your recovery and performance during subsequent runs. If you’re a regular runner, make sure you incorporate these foods into your diet.

    (Also read: 10 Common Mistakes That Make Running More Tiring)

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  • Beans
    2 / 6 Beans

    Beans are low on the glycaemic index, giving you a steady release of energy without sending your blood sugar levels crashing. You can also get your protein fix through beans. The amount of protein (12g) in one serving of beans is almost equivalent to the protein (15g) in a serving of meat. Containing both soluble and insoluble fibre, beans keep your digestive system running smoothly, so you won’t have the runs before your runs.

    (Also read: Here’s Why You Should Eat Protein Before Sleeping)

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  • Milk
    3 / 6 Milk

    Running is known to be a high-impact activity – each stride you take puts significant stress on your bones. Taking in sufficient calcium ensures that the loss in calcium gets replaced. The recommended daily calcium intake of adults by the Health Promotion Board is 800mg to 1,000mg. A 250ml glass of low-fat milk contains 380mg of calcium, meeting almost half the recommended daily intake.

    (Also read: 6 Myths About Milk To Stop Believing)

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  • Oranges
    4 / 6 Oranges

    Orange is an antioxidant powerhouse that increases iron absorption in your body. Iron is essential if you are looking to better your runs, and oranges can give you that nutritional boost by increasing your absorption of iron. Vitamin C also helps to relieve muscle soreness. A study by the University of North Carolina Greensboro proved that participants who took pre-workout vitamin C supplements had reduced muscle soreness later on. Add orange slices to your salad for a light pre-workout snack.

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  • Lean meats
    5 / 6 Lean meats

    Lean cuts of meat are a good source of iron, another nutrient that runners usually lack, as iron is lost through sweat. The lack of iron can result in body fatigue, which will prevent you from giving your best during training. Animal sources contain heme iron which is easier for your body to absorb compared to plant-based ones. Dark poultry like beef and pork are higher in iron but also higher in fat than their white counterparts – chicken and turkey. Vegan sources of iron include beans, whole grains and green leafy vegetables.

    (Also read: 8 Places to Buy Organic, Farm-Fresh Produce, Meat And Seafood in Singapore)

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  • Almonds
    6 / 6 Almonds

    Vitamin E is essential in a runner’s diet. A diet that lacks vitamin E means a possible loss in muscle mass that will in turn affect your running performance. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that is not only great for maintaining muscle mass, but also neutralising harmful free radicals that will damage your cells. You can have a handful of almonds (28g) as a pre-workout snack. Other sources rich in vitamin E are sunflower seeds and hazelnuts.

    (Also read: The Best Post Workout Snacks)

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