○ 10 min read
Sustain Your Athletic Performance With These Tips From a Nutritionist
We sat down with nutritionist Megan Garrett to get her perspective on using healthy foods and supplements to support athletic performance, endurance, and workout recovery. She has so much wisdom to offer about holistic options that assist with long-term vitality when engaging in an active lifestyle. We learned how she approaches nutritional wellness, and she provided some tips for working with foods, herbs, and supplements for daily stress reduction, healthy testosterone support, and essentials to include in your workout routine.
Megan Garrett is a degreed nutritionist who works in LA, helping clients achieve their health and wellness goals through diet and nutrition. With an impressive track record of assisting a diverse clientele, from A-list celebrities and athletes to new moms, in reaching their fitness goals, Megan is driven by a genuine passion for empowering individuals to embrace a healthier lifestyle. She has been at the forefront of creating groundbreaking product lines and utilizes her vast knowledge of nutritional wisdom to develop supplements and products that further enhance people’s wellness journey. Megan is the Brand Lead for Essential elements, and with her deep understanding of nutrition and commitment to quality, her leadership ensures that the brand continues to be an innovative trailblazer and trusted authority in the realm of fitness and athletic nutrition.
What inspired you to become a nutritionist?
Well, I've always had a passion for food and its impact on our overall well-being. I believe nutrition plays a vital role in helping people reach their health and fitness goals, and I wanted to be a part of that journey. Plus, seeing the positive changes in people's lives when they adopt healthier eating habits is incredibly rewarding!
What role does nutrition play in helping people reach their health and fitness goals?
Nutrition plays a crucial role in helping individuals achieve optimal health. It provides the body with the necessary fuel and nutrients to support physical performance, healthy muscle growth, exercise recovery, and overall well-being. Eating a balanced diet tailored to specific goals can optimize energy levels, enhance athletic performance, and promote overall health.
When working with clients, how do you decide what kind of meal plan is right for their health and fitness goals? What are the key factors to consider?
When creating meal plans for clients, I take a personalized approach. I consider their health and fitness goals, their current lifestyle, dietary preferences, and any specific needs they may have. Key factors I consider are their daily calorie and macronutrient requirements, nutrient timing, and finding a balance between enjoyment and nourishment.
How do supplements fit into your nutrition protocols, and do you have any favorites that you often recommend to your clients?
While food should always be our primary source of nutrients whenever possible, supplements can play a major role in maintaining optimal health! I think that’s why I expanded my skillset to include creating and launching supplements. I just see what a great supplement can do when used in conjunction with nutrition and daily movement. One of my favorites is Ashwagandha. It's an adaptogenic herb that may help with daily stress management and promote overall well-being.
What is Ashwagandha, and what are some of its benefits?
Ashwagandha is an ancient herb used in Ayurvedic medicine. Some of its benefits may include reducing everyday stress and tension, supporting adrenal function, promoting healthy energy levels, and even enhancing cognitive function. It's definitely an herb worth exploring!
What are the most important nutrients/foods for active people and athletes to have in their diet?
For active people and athletes, the most important nutrients and foods include protein for everyday muscle repair and healthy growth, fish oil for its joint-soothing properties, and veggies like beets that naturally contain nitrates, which can enhance exercise performance. But hey, don't forget about the overall balance of macronutrients, vitamins, and minerals to support your body's needs.
Do you have any recommendations for someone trying to maintain their endurance to benefit their fitness regime and to help keep up their motivation?
Absolutely! Apart from a well-rounded diet, I often recommend pre-workout snacks or meals that combine carbohydrates for healthy energy, protein for muscle support, and a touch of caffeine for that extra lift. And, of course, staying hydrated is crucial, so don't forget your water bottle (add in a little bit of electrolytes as well, whenever possible)!
Do you have any healthy go-to snacks or easy meal ideas that you recommend to athletes or busy people?
When it comes to healthy snacks and easy meals, I've got you covered! For athletes or busy folks, I often suggest options like Greek yogurt with berries and nuts, protein smoothies with spinach and nut butter, or even a quick veggie stir-fry with lean protein. The key is to combine nutrients, keep it simple, and make sure it's delicious!
Do you have any suggestions to help people stay hydrated or drink more water throughout the day?
Hydration is key for everyone, not just athletes! Some suggestions to stay hydrated throughout the day include carrying a reusable water bottle with you, setting reminders on your phone, infusing water with a little added flavor and electrolytes, and consuming hydrating foods like watermelon, cucumbers, and citrus fruits.
Testosterone is an important topic for many men, and there’s a lot of confusing information out there. How does nutrition relate to hormonal balance, and do you have any food or supplement recommendations that may support healthy testosterone levels?
Ah, testosterone and hormonal balance. Nutrition definitely plays a role here! Certain foods and supplements, like pumpkin seeds, ginger, ashwagandha, shilajit, DIM (diindolylmethane), and boron, have been suggested to support healthy testosterone levels. However, it's important to remember that individual needs can vary, so consulting with a healthcare professional is essential.
What do you recommend for workout recovery? How important is nutrition for helping your muscles and joints recover after a workout?
Post-workout recovery is crucial for muscle and joint health. Nutrition plays a vital role in this process. I often recommend foods high in protein for typical muscle repair, collagen peptides for joint support, and omega-3 fish oil and turmeric curcumin to help reduce exercise-related inflammation. Supplements like magnesium and glucosamine chondroitin can also be beneficial. So, fuel up and recover like a champ!
How do everyday stress and common sleep issues affect people trying to reach their health and fitness goals? Do you have any recommendations that you have found to help with these common issues?
Everyday stress and not getting enough sleep can definitely throw a wrench in our health and fitness goals. When we experience daily stress, our bodies release hormones that can affect metabolism and appetite and even lead to emotional eating. And let's not forget about the impact of sleep disturbances on our energy levels, mood, and recovery. To tackle these common issues, I often recommend incorporating everyday stress management techniques like exercise, meditation, or even a good old dance party! And when it comes to promoting sleep, ashwagandha can help with daily stress reduction, while magnesium supplements can support relaxation and sleep quality. Remember, finding what works best for you is key, so don't be afraid to experiment with different strategies.
What's next for you on your nutrition journey?
Well first and foremost I am thrilled to announce I am taking on the role of Brand Lead for Essential Elements, where I am dedicated to pioneering innovative and transformative product lines. It's a fantastic opportunity for me to contribute to the field of nutrition and make a positive impact on people's lives.
As the Brand Lead, I'm particularly enthusiastic about exploring groundbreaking approaches to nutrition that will empower individuals to achieve optimal health and well-being. I'm constantly seeking out cutting-edge research, collaborating with experts, and staying abreast of the latest scientific advancements.
Apart from my professional aspirations, I'm also looking forward to an incredible summer filled with sunshine and new adventures alongside my son, Jax. Spending quality time with him, exploring the outdoors, and creating lasting memories is a top priority for me. I believe that a balanced lifestyle, which includes nourishing the body and nurturing relationships, is key to overall happiness and fulfillment.
The Essential Element
There you have it, a nutritionist’s point of view on how you can provide your body with what it needs for optimal athletic performance and vitality. If you’re looking to invigorate your exercise routine, Essential elements® offers a comprehensive line of workout support products, including Ashwagandha and T-hero®, our herbal stamina and healthy testosterone maintenance formula. We help you maintain that extra edge and give you the essential building blocks for overall health, endurance, and workout recovery so you can sustain your strength and continue to achieve your fitness goals.