Muscle food: how to eat right to minimize muscle soreness

Muscle food how to eat right to minimize muscle soreness
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You are what you eat. While that is a common saying that tends to gain eye-rolls, even from healthy people, the idiom is extremely true. Everything you eat has a purpose and affects your body differently. However, this goes far beyond either eating “healthy” or eating “junk” food. Even the most health-conscious people can amend their eating habits to better soothe their specific ailment.

One of the most noticeable changes come from muscle food. These are different types of food that will help to minimize muscle soreness and help you get back out there to work out another day. Here is a breakdown outlining how to eat right to minimize muscle soreness:


Cherries are delicious but they are also great for soothing post-workout muscle soreness. A study by Br J Sports Med [1] reported that cherry products (such as tart cherry juice) helped ease muscle soreness and preserve muscle strength when consumed before a workout routine. The study found that tart cherries have numerous antioxidant agents that help ease the pain and aid the recovery of muscles that are exhausted during workouts.

Fatty Fish

When you are trying to minimize muscle soreness, a big plate of fatty fish is the way to go. Indeed, the protein in the fish is great for building muscle; it is the fish’s Omega-3 concentration that is the most beneficial to minimizing muscle soreness.

A 2009 study [2] found that consuming Omega-3 helped reduce soreness in the first 48-hours after exercising.


Eggs are excellent for both muscle tissue recovery and helping us stay alert throughout the day. More than that, though, when it comes to getting the full benefit of eggs, a recent study [3] suggests that eating the yoke in addition to the egg-whites is the best way to maximize the benefits to your muscles.

Cottage Cheese

Cottage cheese specifically is one of the best sources of whey protein and casein protein. Whey protein will help recover muscles quickly, while casein protein stays in the system for a while, helping muscles to continue recovering while you sleep.

In a 2012 study [4], casein protein was found to help muscles recover when it is consumed before bed. As a result, the muscles recovered faster, which minimized the length of muscle soreness.


Yes. For coffee lovers, this study [5] found that a “moderate amount” of coffee (which in this case, is about two cups) can help minimize muscle soreness up to 48%. This does make sense though, as caffeine is one of the main ingredients in many over the counter pain relievers.

Eating right often conjures thoughts of a salad and skipping dessert, limiting the salt and eating more vegetables. However, if you are working out and have sore muscles, eating right takes on a whole new meaning. If you follow the aforementioned eating suggestions, you should find that your soreness is minimized, while still getting the results you deserve.