If you’re an athlete, you have more reason than ever to reach for fruits and veggies before and after exercising. NC State researchers have been part of a recent study that showed consuming blueberries and green tea improved metabolism and nutrient absorption among athletes.
In the study of long-distance runners, one group drank a special protein shake infused with polyphenol-rich blueberries and green tea while the placebo group drank a normal protein shake. Polyphenols found in fruits and vegetables – particularly blueberries – are known for vast health benefits including reducing inflammation and oxidative stress that often occurs after intense exercise.
The study found that intense exercise increased gut permeability, allowing the body to absorb more polyphenols. Runners in the study who drank the blueberry-infused protein powder shake also experienced a spike in metabolism up to 14 hours after exercise. That’s like burning fat while you sleep. So if you exercise a lot, be sure to read more about the study and stock up on polyphenol-rich fruits and vegetables.