If you are wondering if sugar is good for you after a workout, you need to understand that there is no simple answer to this question.
The bottom line is that there are some sugars that are considered healthy because they occur naturally and other processed sugars which you should not eat after a workout and only in moderation at other times.
Eating healthy while you apply a training program to your life will only enhance the results of your weight training workout.
Younger people, those of you under the age of 30, may find that you can eat pretty much whatever you want without it negatively impacting your weight training program.
As you get older, however, your body’s metabolism no longer burns calories like it used to.
This means that the bad food that you are eating becomes a part of you instead of being burned off.
What’s more, no matter how old you are, eating the wrong foods, including processed sugar, has an effect on more than your weight training workout.
Eating poorly affects your heart, which could lead to heart disease and excess sugar intake can lead to diabetes as well.
What kind of sugars are okay after weight training?
If you are weight training and combining a cardio program with your weight training workout, then you have a little more leeway when it comes to the foods that you eat than if you are weight training alone.
However, in either situation, balanced nutrition requires that you should only intake sugars from natural sources. These include:
- Fruit juice
- Some vegetables
The reason that minimizing products with sugar added is so important is that your body actually processes added sugar much faster than naturally occurring sugar.
What this means for you is that added sugar is broken down into the blood stream faster, which means that it could lead to diabetes, or in the very least, adding fat to the body.
Natural sugars that occur in fruit and honey break down slowly. This means that you will have the opportunity to work off that sugar and the body can break it down and use it properly, such as for energy, instead of storing it as fat.
Isn’t all sugar natural?
Yes and no! Raw sugar, which comes from sugar cane, is natural; however, this isn’t what you normally buy in the grocery store. In order to make the sugar white, it is processed in a plant; this process is called refining.
You can purchase unprocessed sugar, which is higher in minerals, but it is still not exactly natural, as it had to be extracted from the sugar cane in order for you to use it.
When you see a reference to natural sugar, this means that it is naturally occurring in the product that you are eating or drinking.
For example, pure orange juice has naturally occurring sugar while soda has added processed sugar.
While naturally occurring sugar is better for you, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t moderate your intake. Any kind of sugar can lead to health problems if you have too much, so keep that in mind while considering your diet.
Where do I get my energy if not from sugar?
Your body converts pretty much anything you eat into energy. If you have too much sugar, your body will actually burn up energy too fast (remember, we mentioned how fast the body breaks down unnatural sugars?), causing you to have a burst of energy and then a crash.
Carbs, proteins and even fat are all converted to energy and if you are eating a well-balanced diet, then you will have adequate energy to complete your weight training workout. You should also ensure that your vitamin intake is good as well.
If you feel that you aren’t getting enough vitamins, then you should consider a vitamin supplement to aid in your energy output. Specifically, vitamins C and H are helpful for creating energy, with vitamin O being the catalyst to trigger that energy.
There are also energy supplements sold specifically for those who are on a weight training program; however, you need to read the labels carefully to ensure that you aren’t ingesting too much sugar.
In addition, you should always try to get what you need from foods before taking supplements because your body absorbs vitamins and minerals from food faster and more effectively than it does from supplements.
It doesn’t matter if you are using a daily weight training workout or you are only training once or twice a week, maintaining your health with a good diet is an excellent way to maximize your workout.