Updated: Apr 19, 2021
What is metabolic recovery? It’s busting your butt and fueling your muscles and body with nutrients when it most needs them. If you are not strategically consuming healthy nutrients, your body will not recover properly. While a “strategic plan” may sound like overkill; remembering to eat healthy food when you actually feel hungry is a strategic plan in itself. Spend some time researching this, it’s a great investment of both time and money.
It is also important to remember that everybody’s needs are different. My diet won’t work for you, and your diet won’t work for me. As Socrates would say “know thyself.” Try to biohack yourself and figure out what makes you feel awesome. Most importantly, don’t let someone else try to shove their “perfect plan” down your throat unless you understand and agree with it.
Here are some quick tips that I have found helpful. Full disclosure – dieting has been such a polarizing topic for so long, I feel like I’m about to lay out my political views! So, I will say this: you may not agree with my diet and I may not like your diet, but we can still be friends.
Work out supplements- Supplements work, obviously we can’t dive into all of them right now, so I’ll just leave you with this tip about supplements. Use them as directed! If you are supposed to build up a tolerance to your pre-workout, do it. Are you supposed to take a break from your supplements? Is there a loading period? What good do those nutrients do if you have diarrhea all day long and can’t absorb any of them?
Breakfast – I love breakfast, actually I love breakfast foods, who doesn't? From a health perspective traditional breakfast foods suck. So, make sure that a good potion of your breakfast includes vegetables. If you balance what you’re eating, you can’t go that far astray.
Macros – Try studying up on macronutrients and count your intake for a few days. I’m not a fan of counting macros constantly, but it’s good to know where you stand. Do you eat enough? Do you eat too much? Counting macros can be a good factual way to find out.
Feed your body – After a long rigorous workout, eat! Eat healthy, drink a shake, do what your thing but fuel your muscles. Breaking down your muscles so they build back up stronger and bigger than before is the hard part, but eating to give the muscles the tools to rebuild should be the easy part. Unfortunately though, too often we miss the window to fuel the machine. Experts say eating within 45 minutes of a work out will help with protein synthesis.
Prepare to fuel your muscles – Always plan on getting hungry after a lot of physical activity. Don’t jump in the car after a huge pump with no food, or you could end up at a drive-thru window….yuck.
Electrolytes – Getting to know what your body needs before a workout is important. Some people need exogenous electrolytes because they sweat a lot of them out. It is important to educate yourself on how to use electrolytes properly. If you need electrolytes and aren’t using them accordingly, your workouts will probably feel pretty crappy. However, if you use too much you may experience some edema of your extremities or face water retention issues.
Just like Mama Said – Eat your veggies! Every diet needs to involve a lot of veggies, and it’s never a bad idea to supplement your needs with juices and vitamins as well.
CBD (cannabinoids) and Metabolic Recovery
Can non psychoactive cannabinoids help with recovery? When you take a look at the three key elements of recovery, It is clear to see that CBD has many beneficial effects when it comes to the recovery process.
CBD and Metabolic Recovery – As I previously mentioned, finding a diet that works for you is paramount to recovery. However, what about stomach issues like IBS, GERD, Crohn's disease, celiac disease and other issues concerning the digestive tract? Having gastrointestinal issues can make it extraordinarily difficult to get the proper macronutrients into the body. A lot of times people find that a food allergy is causing that autoimmune response, and cutting the allergen out completely creates significant improvement. So if you suffer these issues, chat with your doctor to see if you have a food allergy.
Can cannabinoids help? Anecdotal evidence shows that cannabinoid-based products can have significant impacts on issues concerning the gastro digestive tract.
One of the core reasons to supplement with cannabinoids is to calm down your body and bring the nervous system back to homeostasis. When the parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest) is engaged, it also stimulates the enteric nervous system. What is the enteric nervous system? Our second brain, the digestive tract. Fun fact: The enteric nervous system has more neurons than the entire spinal column! The gut utilizes over 30 neurotransmitters including: acetylcholine, dopamine, and serotonin. Over 90 percent of the body’s serotonin and over 50% of the body’s dopamine can be found in the gut. The enteric nervous system (ENS) is a powerful thing.
The enteric nervous system is stimulated by the parasympathetic nervous system (rest and digest.) This helps you with defecation and provides a nerve supply to the colon, rectum and anus. On the contrary, the ENS is stalled when the sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) is engaged. Besides losing all the nerve supply to the gastrointestinal system, blood is also diverted to the muscles when the sympathetic nervous system is engaged. What does blood carry? Oxygen. When the gastrointestinal system is deprived of oxygen for too long it can ruin our gut’s healthy bacteria, and issues can arise from an imbalance of intestinal fauna and flora.
Cannabinoids interact directly with the enteric nervous system. There are a lot of cannabinoid receptors in the gut, and they are vital to your gut’s health. Supplementation with cannabinoids can help bring the gut’s receptors back to homeostasis, and alleviate a slew of intestinal issues.
Application – To be clear, I’m not giving medical advice. If you have a serious issue occurring consult with your doctor. But If you want to try cannabinoid-based products for gut issues, use an application that interacts directly with the enteric nervous system. Some good options are cannabinoids in a pill form, or a sublingual tincture. Remember holding a tincture sublingually yields a higher absorption rate, +/- 40%. While sending liposoluble hemp extractions through the first pass metabolism yields a +/- a 10% rate (depending on fatty contents in the stomach). This means you can eat a little more of the tincture than you would hold sublingually.
While cannabinoid based products won’t help you grow and repair muscles, they can certainly give you relief from intestinal issues that get in the way of macronutrient absorption.
Note - Use a full spectrum product, they are finding some good benefits to the gastrointestinal tract in minor cannabinoids like CBG. Also, some people lump cannabinoids together assume that if you’re an avid THC user you might be getting gut benefits from this. THC has been prescribed as an appetite stimulus to patients who have trouble eating after chemo or taking HIV medications; On the contrary, there is a syndrome called cannabinoid hyperemesis. This is usually found in long term daily marijuana users. Someone who suffers from cannabinoid hyperemesis will experience repeated bouts of vomiting. Not the goal here folks. And because the endocannabinoid system has such a strong presence in the gut, oral administration of THC can have a wide spectrum of effects.
Additionally, more Delta-9 THC gets broken down in the liver than if you were to smoke or vape the Delta-9 THC. Delta-9 THC gets broken down in the liver to 11-hydroxy -THC, which is also a strong psychoactive. Therefore, people interact differently with edibles. People who have eaten edibles and have been strongly impacted by them often give me the hairy eye when I say, “cannabis extractions have a low absorption rate.” THC has a double whammy orally.
Until next time,
Stay healthy, my friends