Best Foods for Healthy Muscles
Build Strong Muscles
While protein is crucial for beefing up a strong you, a gal can't live on steak and eggs alone. Try these foods for added support.
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Not only are they filled with protein (15 grams a cup!), they also provide about 16 percent of your daily dose of cramp-preventing potassium.
Try this recipe: Cool Southwestern Salad With Corn and Avocado
"It's less fatty than beef but packed with iron—a building block of hemoglobin, which your body uses to ferry oxygen to muscles," says sports nutritionist Karen Ansel, RDN. (Skip the skin.)
Try this recipe: Creamy Chicken and Mushroom Crepes
The vitamin E they contain helps boost antioxidant capacity, so your muscles can combat the free radicals you produce during exercise.
Try this recipe: Curried Sunflower Brittle
"When you work out, your muscles burn through glycogen, or muscle fuel," Ansel says. This can be replaced only with complex carbohydrates.
Try this recipe: Oven-Baked Potato Pancakes
Whole-Grain Cereal and Skim Milk
"Milk has whey protein, which is full of an amino acid called leucine that helps build muscle and burn fat," Ansel says. "The whole grains are a good source of complex carbs."
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Very few foods are rich in vitamin D, an essential hormone for muscle strength, but one serving of halibut offers about a quarter of your daily dose.
Try this recipe: Baked Halibut with Sauce Verte