Surprising thing you should be doing after your workout

·Features and Health Editor
·3-min read

By now we know that cooling down and stretching after a workout is crucial for a good recovery, but it turns out there is something else you could be doing as well.

And it all has to do with when the right time is to take magnesium - a key mineral that plays a vital role within our body.

couple stretching
Stretching after a workout could be just as important as adding magnesium. Photo: Getty

As Stephanie Hinton, Naturopath at Vitable, explains to Yahoo Lifestyle magnesium is actually one of the most abundant minerals in our bodies.

"It plays a very important role in managing your energy production and metabolism as well as maintaining bone health and a normal heart rhythm whilst reducing muscle contractions - making it the ultimate post-workout saviour," Stephanie tells us.


"Because as we workout, we tend to lose magnesium through our sweat," she adds, which is why she suggests eating more magnesium-rich foods like nuts and leafy greens, or even trying a supplement powder or tablet if we're working out regularly.

"If you tend to experience painful muscle cramps after a workout sesh, this could mean that your magnesium levels are low," she adds.

When is the best time to take magnesium?

Allowing your body to recover effectively will help improve your energy outputs and help sustain performance in the long run.

"You can look to take it directly following a workout to help restore and recover as well as closer to bedtime to help relax your muscles," she adds.

“The beauty of magnesium is that it is such a versatile mineral, meaning you can take it virtually any time of the day to feel its benefits."

woman after her workout
Taking magnesium straight after your workout is great for sore muscles. Photo: Getty

But your workout routine isn't the only place magnesium is important.

The mineral is essential for the health of the heart, blood vessels, brain, bones, skeletal muscles, lungs, and pancreas.

And if you aren't getting enough magnesium, it can lead to symptoms like anxiety, fatigue, depression, headaches, irritability, sleep disorders, constipation or cramps.

According to Australian Bureau of Statistics, a total of 61 per cent of males aged 14 to 18 years consume less than their requirements for magnesium, and 72 per cent of females of the same age.

Though Stephanie stresses not to reach for supplements right off the bat.

"It is always important to focus on real, whole foods first before commencing supplementation," she explains.

"A good rule of thumb to ensure you’re getting enough of this essential micronutrient is to try and have a variety of different plant-based foods in your diet each day.

"However, it can be challenging to keep a healthy, balanced diet when life gets busy! This is especially important if you’re in the at-risk category of magnesium deficiency or are a picky eater. In this case, you may want to consider supplementing."

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