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GR8NESS expert Expert Reviewed
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Alternatives to Supplements for Muscle Recovery

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After your daily dose of exercise, your achievement is often met with soreness, muscle aches, and fatigue. While these inconveniences are not the reward you wished for, they’re necessary. The saying “No pain, no gain” is not just a cliché, it’s a fact. After you work out, your muscles need time to recover, so all the muscle fibers you ripped apart while training can grow back stronger and bigger than ever. Most people turn to muscle recovery supplements to help speed up the process so they can get back to training as soon as possible. But, if you’re looking for alternative muscle recovery supplements, this guide will show you how to find some natural ways to help your muscles bounce back to normal.

Protein-Rich Foods

Protein is an essential building block for muscles. Getting enough protein helps minimize the decline in strength and muscle mass. Furthermore, eating protein-rich foods also helps prevent inflammation, which can speed up the recovery process. Look for foods like red meat, chicken, fish, beans, nuts, and seeds.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C helps your body make collagen, which is vital for the integrity of your muscles. Getting enough foods rich in vitamin C helps rebuild muscle tissue, speed up recovery, and prevent excessive inflammation. Look for fruits and vegetables rich in vitamin C like citrus fruits, tomatoes, leafy greens, and broccoli.

Zinc-Rich Foods

Zinc is a component of many proteins and enzymes needed for tissue repair and growth, as well as wound healing. Some studies show that not getting enough zinc can delay wound healing. Find zinc-rich foods like shellfish, meat, nuts, seeds, and whole grains to help speed up your muscle recovery process.

Adaptogen Herbs

Elevated cortisol levels can affect your energy expenditure, sleep quality, and fat storage. These are all essential factors to keep in balance when you’re working out. Adaptogen herbs like ginseng, holy basil, and ashwagandha support your body’s resilience against stress, improving your ability to recover from workouts.

B Vitamins

Having a deficiency in B vitamins often leads to muscle weakness and symptoms of fatigue. Including foods high in B vitamins such as meat, dairy, and eggs, can help support cell repair and energy production. All of these factors are key to muscle recovery.

Plant Protein

Two noteworthy alternatives to protein powders are hemp and pea protein powders. They are rich in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids and fiber, which are necessary for excellent muscle recovery. These proteins are also great alternatives for those looking to support and build lean muscle mass.

Fiber-Rich Foods

When your muscles are sore or injured, immobilization or limited use is necessary. When this occurs, it’s easy for fat to find its way around the muscle and stay there. Incorporating fiber-rich foods such as whole grains, legumes, and vegetables with every meal is an excellent alternative to muscle recovery supplements. It helps people feel fuller, thus reducing calorie and fat intake. This will help make sure the muscle recovery process is not affected by any unwanted fat.

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GR8NESS expert Dr. Cynthia Barber
Dr. Cynthia Barber
Expert Reviewer
Most people need to eat more fiber which helps maintain a healthy gut microflora.
Geraldine
GR8NESS Writer
Geraldine is a GR8NESS Contributing Editor who writes about self care, clean makeup and beauty, mental health, and relationships – as well as natural remedies and fitness. She’s a coffee enthusiast with Venezuelan roots, a former ballerina, and the sunscreen patrol. Most of the time, you can find her working on her skincare routine or trying a new dance workout.
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