The Pre-Workout Snack Halle Berry Swears By
But is she doing it right?
If you’re looking for some fitness inspiration, it’s a good idea to check out Halle Berry’s Instagram account on Fridays. That’s when the Oscar-winning actress features a #FitnessFriday post, sharing her favorite workout moves (the plank pull), equipment (hello, medicine ball), and other healthy living hacks.
Her personal trainer, Peter Lee Thomas, often makes a cameo in these posts — and he’s been sharing even more of Berry’s healthy habits. The trainer recently told Popsugar that Berry’s go-to pre-workout snack is a beetroot supplement that she mixes with water and drinks on an empty stomach about a half-hour before hitting the gym. He says it’s her favorite pick-me-up in the morning.
Beetroot, and even whole beets, is a smart snack before a workout because they contain nitrates, which are converted into nitric oxide in your body. "Nitric oxide helps relax and dilate blood vessels, which improve blood flow and lowering blood pressure, and can carry more oxygen to working muscles," says Alexandra Caspero, R.D. (and Healthy Eats contributor).
But Caspero suggests an upgrade to Berry’s pre-workout ritual. "Supplements can be expensive, plus this one contains sugar as the second ingredient," she warns. "Instead, I’d make a smoothie featuring both beet juice and pomegranate juice. It’s naturally sweet without any additional sugars." She says adding pomegranate juice is a good idea because it contains antioxidants. "Early research suggests that certain types of antioxidants, like polyphenols, found in pomegranate juice, may play a role in exercise efficiency by protecting nitric oxide against oxidative stress," Caspero says.
Her simple smoothie suggestion features one cup of pure pomegranate juice, one ripe frozen banana, one tablespoon of coconut chips, and two thin slices of raw beet. Toss the ingredients into your blender, and then puree until you have a smoothie-like consistency.
"The cost is a fraction of the supplement that Halle uses," Caspero says. "And it provides the same benefits: Maximize vascular integrity and provides a natural source of energy."
Just don’t forget to post a pic of your smoothie on Instagram.