It is the time of year when students are gearing up for the fall sports season. Whether playing football, volleyball or soccer, youth are practicing hard, sweating and burning many calories. Chocolate milk can be a great way for youth to refuel after a good workout or practice.
When we think about chocolate milk, we often think about how we drank it in grade school with a snack or at the lunch table. Recently however, chocolate milk came back into the spotlight as a great after workout drink.
According to a research study done by The University of Texas at Austin by Dr. John Ivy, chocolate milk consumed after a workout is the best post-workout recovery drink. Study participants had better body composition in the form of more muscle and less fat, improved times while working out, and overall better physical shape than peers who consumed sports beverages that contained just carbohydrates.
In addition to this study, chocolate milk is an excellent source of nine essential nutrients that athletes need for good health: calcium, potassium, protein, phosphorus, vitamins A, D and B12, riboflavin and niacin. For these reasons and more, the United Dairy Industry of Michigan calls chocolate milk nature’s sports drink. They currently have a grant program for high schools to receive funding to provide chocolate milk to athletes at afterschool sports events.
To learn more about nutrition and what our bodies need to be healthy, contact Michigan State University Extension for information and to learn what classes they provide.