“To eat or not to eat, was a big question before going for a yoga class”
For a very long time, I was confused about what to eat before or after a yoga class. Doing yoga on an empty stomach resulted in over-eating post the class. And, incorrect eating led to nausea and not-a-great feeling while practicing yoga. Thus, good eating habits optimize your yoga practice!
Things To Remember When You Eat Before Yoga:
- Ideally, foods take around 3 hours to digest. And if you practice yoga, while your food is still digesting. Then most of the blood circulation and energy is diverted to the digestive tract.
- During some yoga asanas, especially forward bends and twists, there is pressure on abdominal organs which may push the food upwards resulting in feeling of great discomfort.
- After years of practice, I can assure you, yoga is best done on an empty stomach. There is more room in your abdominal cavity for deeper breathing, and mindfulness is more satiating on an light stomach!
- Eating before yoga depends on how fast the foods get digested in the stomach. Fruits take around 30 , light meals may take 2 hours, heavy meals take 3 hours or more.
- If you practice in the mornings: Take a glass of lukewarm water with a tinge of lemon and honey. Also, clear your bowels before doing yoga.
- Banana: It is going to give you a quick hit of energy, due to its carbohydrate and B-vitamin content. Besides, it fights the hunger pangs and is easy to digest.
- Green veggies/Salads: They are fast, easy to digest, nutritious and loaded with fibre.
- Toast and veggies/cheese: Don’t load it with sauces, make a small portion and you’re good to go!
- Fresh fruits and some nuts: They can provide the required energy. Almonds, raisins and walnuts with one fist of cut fruits is a favourite!
- Apples: Apples are alkaline fruits and help counter acidity developing in the stomach. They also contain natural sugars and lots of fiber.
- Oatmeal: Eating a bowl of oatmeal before your yoga class, is a prudent idea. It is easy to digest and rich in fibers. Besides, it avoids munching on junk post yoga.
What To Eat After Yoga
After you return from your yoga classes, it is quite natural that you will be rather hungry. But, do not throw away the advantages obtained from yoga by indulging in Biryani or Chola-Bhatura.
After your workout eat something with alkaline. As your muscles are loaded with lactic acid and your body is very acidic. Thus you want to have something with alkaline to move out the acidity so you can recover faster.
- Water: While you will need to eat after practicing yoga, it is even more important to provide hydration to the body. You need to drink plenty of water. However, you may drink coconut water sometimes.
- Fresh Fruit juices: Try different fruit juices for variety. Do not use additional sugar and rely on the natural sugar in the fruits.
- Soups: High on nutrients, low on calories! You can use carrots, celery, spinach or cabbages to make such soups. Pour in your favourite vegetables and add black pepper and ginger for flavour. Making soups at home is better than readymade packets.
- Healthy meals: If you are just in time for dinner, eat optimal portions of veggies dal-roti or tuna with veggies.
These simple tips can go a long way in helping you reap the best benefits of a yoga session. The key is to eat light and right. 🙂
Yogi. Blogger. Storyteller After, a decade of being a fitness enthusiast and various trial and errors with corporate jobs and teaching (post a PG degree in Management).