SALADS ARE seen as the weight-loss meal, but actually they can help those trying to pack on muscle. Also, they are one of the simplest ways of attaining balance at meal times.
James Morehen from Liverpool John Moores University, salads are great for taking on vitamins and minerals. In previous issues we’ve encouraged you to ‘eat a rainbow a day’ and it’s easy to do this in a salad. You may remember that beetroot, for example, is excellent for nitrates and increasing your antioxidants, which help with infl ammation. Below we give you a good pre-training salad that balances protein, carbs, vitamins and minerals, but there are other options to consider too. You could try a simple salad of beetroot, goats’ cheese and walnuts (left, great for fi ghting infl ammation), amongst all of your favourite green leaves.
Post-training, you could have a salad with grilled chicken, spinach, egg and sliced beetroot. The key nutrients in some of these ingredients, when absorbed, help with vasodilation – lowering blood pressure and allowing oxygen-rich blood to circulate more freely.
Infl ammation, says Morehen, is a necessary step as your body recovers. However, as your tissues rebuild the process can be aided by taking on anthocyanin and fl avonoids – antioxidants found in blueberries, raspberries, tomatoes and almonds.