High-Protein Pasta to Help You Fuel and Recover

Athletes need to perform at their peak every single day. Sound overall nutrition must prepare and support the body for all that we ask it to do.

But to be top notch, athletes need food sources that significantly enhance both fueling and recovery.

More: Post-Workout Fuel You Need

High-protein pasta is one source that helps fulfill both those needs. Whole-grain pasta noodles provide ample carbohydrates for fueling before exercise, and for replenishing depleted glycogen stores after exercise. A sauce containing some kind of lean protein source can help repair and rebuild muscle tissue.

More: The Importance of Getting Enough Protein Post-Workout

Here's more on how the carbs and protein in pasta can help you fuel and recover.

How Carbs Help You Fuel and Recover

Carbohydrates are the preferred energy source for all activities in the body. Adequate carbohydrate stores allow for greater blood sugar regulation, which in turn prevents early exercise fatigue.

Athletes can quickly reach exhaustion during exercise, if following a low-carbohydrate diet (less than 5 percent carb intake). More than one study has found that cyclists, ice hockey players and runners performed better when they ingested a higher carbohydrate diet.

More: Are You Eating Enough Carbs?

Athletes who train exhaustively on successive days or who compete in prolonged endurance events need to consume a diet containing 60 to 70 percent of total calories from carbohydrate.

Plus, eating carbs after an endurance event is equally important to eating carbs before the event. If muscle glycogen reserves are not replenished, athletes may feel increasingly fatigued from one training session to the next.

How Protein Rebuilds Muscle

Eating enough protein in general, and in your post-exercise recovery meal, helps the body repair and rebuild muscle fibers broken down during exercise. This muscle rebuilding cannot take place if the essential amino acids from protein aren't available to the body.

More: How to Pack In Your Protein

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