The 4 Best Foods for Sore Muscles

fitness food
The 4 Best Foods for Sore Muscles

Woman drinks coffee after exercise: The 4 best foods to combat muscle pain

© muse studio / Shutterstock

Wow, my legs hurt with every step on the stairs. Even if you sometimes overdo it when exercising, you’re probably not familiar with sore muscles. Fortunately, there are foods that can turn an angry hangover into a kitten.

Ideally, we should feel fit, happy (thanks, dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins!) and full of energy after exercise. But when we train for the first time after a long break or go beyond our limits, this effect is quickly reversed. We all know that sore muscles can be quite unpleasant.

What exactly is muscle pain?

When we overload our muscles, small tears appear in the muscle fibers. Water can flow through these cracks, causing small swellings and swellings in the tissue. So we feel this as sore muscles: every movement, no matter how small, with the affected muscle hurts, and the areas are particularly sensitive to pressure.

This is why you should always listen to your body while exercising. This is especially true for beginners, but seasoned fitness freaks shouldn’t overdo it either. You shouldn’t skip warm-ups and cool-downs, including your stretching session, nor should you skip rest days when your muscles can recover. Plus, it can also help with your diet to make sure sore muscles don’t get too bad.

4 foods that help against muscle pain

1. Beet

Beetroot is a real versatile secret weapon. This is due in part to so-called flavonoids. These are secondary active plant ingredients that protect our cells thanks to their antioxidant effect and also have an anti-inflammatory effect. The tuber is also rich in nitrates, that is, salts that dilate our blood vessels and can thus stimulate blood circulation. This combination of nutrients in beets ensures that our muscles can recover faster after a workout. One study was able to show that beetroot juice can relieve muscle pain faster in athletes.

2. coffee

Coffee is often wrongly demonized. Because caffeine can be beneficial to our health in moderation. The awakening substance works by blocking our adenosine receptors. This messenger normally has the job of signaling to us that we are tired. This effect is suspended when we consume caffeine.

In addition to adenosine, caffeine also blocks our body’s pain receptors, which is why it also has an analgesic effect and can, for example, relieve muscle pain. For one study, women and men took caffeine supplements before and a few days after intense exercise. Lo and behold, they actually had less muscle soreness than the comparison group.


Cottage cheese is one of the favorite foods of fitness fanatics. This is mainly due to the large amount of protein that dairy food contains. Strengthens our muscles. Quark is also rich in calcium, and we sweat a lot of this mineral when we exercise. This is how the quark can prevent muscle pain.

4. Watermelon

If you ever need a change from water as a post-workout drink, try watermelon juice. Because it’s low in calories and high in water content, it can replenish your fluid stores after training.

Watermelon can also help our muscles to regenerate. The fruit owes this effect to the amino acid L-citrulline. It is an important component of proteins and also has an antioxidant effect, which means that it protects our cells from harmful environmental influences. Studies have shown that watermelon juice can counteract muscle pain.

Sources used:,


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