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16 Foods You Should Avoid Before (and After) a Workout

Working very hard in the gym but never get any results?

Wait, you’re most likely giving your body the wrong foods that aren’t helpful for your fast recovery after training, leading to delayed workout results.

In this article, I will share with you eight foods you should never eat after a workout and mention the worst pre-workout foods that you should stop right now to enhance your performance and overall well-being. 

So, let’s read on!

8 Foods You Should Never Eat After a Workout

Foods You Should Avoid After a Workout

Let’s check out the eight foods you should avoid eating after a workout.

1. Energy Bar

Energy bars are somewhat can be a healthy snack option as they provide a good amount of protein. But they’re also high in fiber, artificial sugar and saturated fat, which moves them from a healthy to a high-calorie unhealthy option.

Most of the manufacturers added hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils in their bars which aren’t healthful for our body in the long run.

However, if you want to consume an energy bar, then I would recommend you go for a homemade option, make it healthily, and consume any other time of the day.

2. Caffeine

When you’re going to perform a tough workout, caffeine is one of the best supplements you can take to enhance your performance. But not in the post-workout.

Because in the post-workout, our body needs nutrients like protein and carbs to recover damaged muscle tissues but don’t need any energy supplement.

Sometimes whether you’re going to working out or not, it’s not recommended to take caffeine late at night because it can leave you a sleepless night.

So, before an intense workout, caffeine can be fine but not after a workout.

3. Sports Drinks

Sports drinks help you perform long-duration workouts, containing carbohydrates and electrolytes, minerals like potassium, calcium, and sodium that maintain the proper fluid balance in the body.

Sports drinks are used to replace the water to hydrate the body, but these are often loaded with sugar and calories, leading to unhealthy weight gain.

It would be best to consume a healthy pre-workout snack and drink enough water during training to keep your body energetic and hydrated.

4. Spicy Foods

Spicy foods are made of too many hot spices like chili peppers or cayenne, which can irritate our bodies.

Consuming spicy foods, especially in the post-workout when our body burned all the energy during training, may cause heartburn and diarrhea. If you’re a fan of spicy foods, switch your eating timing from pre and post-workout to other.

5. High Fatty-Foods

After we finish the workout, our body needs easily digestible foods to quickly replenish the glycogen store and start the recovery process. So again, protein and carbs is the best combination.

Eating high fatty foods in the post isn’t ideal because fat is a slow-digesting nutrient, and our body doesn’t need it after a workout. So it’s not only delaying your workout results but also gain your weight.

6. Processed Foods

Processed foods are loaded with refined carbohydrates, sugar, sodium, and unhealthy fat. That’s why it is not only unfit to your post-workout but overall diet.

Too much consumption of these foods in the long term may lead to serious health issues like obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc. So, it would be best to control your tongue from these processed foods.

7. Fried Foods

When a normal food is fried, it’s become more calorie-dense and may destroy its important nutrients. And fried foods contain lots of unhealthy fats, which may cause high blood pressure, cholesterol, and several heart diseases.

When we’re just finishing off intense training, it does not make sense to consume fried foods afterward. Because this’s when our bodies need healthy nutrients to maximize our workout results, keep wider the distance between the two fried meals.

8. Eating Nothing

This is one of the biggest mistakes that some beginners make that not eating after a workout. When we exercise, we need to know that our body uses most of the energy during the workout.

Immediately after finishing a workout is the best time to put some healthy nutrients in the body and allow it to refuel our body and maximize our workout output.

The Worst Foods to Eat Before a Workout

Okay, let’s move into the foods you should never eat before a workout.

9. Junk Foods

We all know that junk foods are not in the pre-workout, but they should be cut off from your overall diet. This is because junk foods are filled with calories, and most of them are sugar or fat.

It’s recommended to avoid junk foods from your diet because regularly consuming them can lead to obesity and several health problems like cardiovascular disease, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers.

10. Dairy

Dairy or milk products are high in fat. And doesn’t have enough nutrients we need the most in the pre-workout — carbs and protein.

Dairy are slow-digesting food and can make you feel nauseous or uncomfortable during a workout. So, it would be best to avoid milk in the pre-workout. However, dairy can be fine in the post-workout.

11. Avocado

Avocado is the main source of fat which isn’t required 30 minutes before training. As I said before, fats need more time to digest, and that’s not the nutrient we need in the pre-workout.

Even though avocados are packed with good nutrients and healthy fats, they should never be eaten in the pre-workout because their high fat and fiber content needs a long time to digest by our body.

12. Energy Drinks

Energy drinks are somewhat may beneficial on hardworking days to boost your energy. However, these are loaded with caffeine and sugar.

Why should you not use them?

Because too much consumption of caffeine can cause several health issues like a rise in blood pressure and heart rate, anxiety and insomnia, and sugar may lead to bad weight gain.

Consuming energy drinks over a long period may increase the risk of heart disease.

13. Fiber-Rich foods

Fiber is an important nutrient to maintain proper bowel movement in our body. But a high amount of fiber isn’t ideal in the pre-workout because it takes a long time to digest in our system.

That’s why it’s not the right nutrient to consume in the pre-workout, especially thirty minutes before exercise. If you do so, you may feel bloated during the workout.

14. Cheese

It would help if you were not to eat cheese in the pre-workout because it’s high in fat which can cause you to feel lethargic during the workout.

Consuming them in the pre-workout will increase your stomach’s acid, making you feel uncomfortable during the workout. Dairy like milk, yogurt, and cheese should be taken after a workout, not before.

15. Packed Juice

Although some natural fruit juice is available on the market, most manufacturers added artificial colors and flavors to enhance their taste, ultimately making them an unhealthy option.

Consuming these artificial colors and sugar may lead to several health diseases and unhealthy weight gain in the long run.

Instead of buying packaged juice from the market, it would be best to make juice at your home with fresh, natural fruits and drink them without adding any flavor.

16. High Sugar Smoothie

Smoothies can be an impressive pre-workout snack option to fuel the body and enhance your performance. But how healthy your smoothie depends on what ingredients you’re adding.

When you add sugar into your smoothie to get a sweet taste, that’s not the ideal meal because sugar consumption may lead to weight gain and can cause many health diseases in the long term.

When you’re making a smoothie, you must avoid artificial flavors. Instead, you should use fruits like bananas, dates, oranges, which are naturally sweet and very healthful.

What You Can Eat Instead

Confuse what to eat before and after a workout?

No worry, check out the following articles to get (50+40) 90 healthy pre and post-workout snack ideas that can help you get a unique taste every day.

Visit there to check out some awesome snack ideas and then comment about the recipes you like the most!


I’ve not added the same food in the pre and post-workout foods category. For example, I added processed foods and fried foods in the post-workout list but not in the pre-workout. That doesn’t mean you can eat them in the pre-workout.

You have to be wise enough when choosing the foods. It’s always recommended to avoid unhealthy foods, whether pre-or post-workout or any other time of the day.

You should never eat the foods mentioned above before and after a workout to boost your performance and workout results.

However, if you have any questions regarding pre and post-workout meals, feel free to ask in the comment section below! We’ll glad to help you!

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