Reasons why the endurance and all other athletes should be fueling up on sweet potatoes before and after workouts, races and events.

Rich in fiber and help provide steady energy for prolonged periods of time.

The glycemic index measures how quickly certain foods release carbohydrates into the body. High glycemic foods cause blood sugar levels to spike, while low glycemic foods release glucose slowly into the bloodstream. A surprising fact about sweet potatoes is their ability to help regulate blood sugar levels. Research has confirmed that sweet potato extract can increase blood levels of adiponectin, a protein hormone produced by your fat cells, which regulates the way your body metabolizes and even lower’s insulin levels. The truth is, carbohydrates play an essential role in an athletes fueling strategy because they are a key source of energy and provide the glucose necessary to replace the glycogen lost during training and competition. So if you’re looking for a super-food that you may have overlooked, try giving sweet potatoes another shot in your fueling strategy for performance and quality of life measures

Sweet potatoes also provide a healthy dose of complex carbs, which take longer to digest and help supply the body with energy over a longer period of time. This slow process breaks carbs into glycogen and are stored in the liver and muscles to be used as fuel for exercise. This differs than simple carbs, which breakdown fast into glucose for quick energy and turn into fat stores when not used right away for exercise. The reason that sweet potatoes are such a great post-workout option for athletes is because after a workout your body’s glycogen levels are dropped and the complex carbs talked about above help restore the levels of glycogen in the body. So that not only you can be refueled right away, but they’ll also aid in recovery for your next workout/practice/game whether that day or the next. If you are not using sweet potatoes as a post-workout option you are missing out on some of the tastiest and best ways to recover.

Potassium is a mineral that plays a big role in muscle control, electrolyte balance and nerve function. Athletes and others involved in intense training generally need more potassium than the average person.

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