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Low-Fat Chocolate Milk Aids Muscle Recovery

By Daniel H. Rasolt

Posted: Friday, June 05, 2009

Defeat Diabetes ® News -- Low-fat chocolate milk appears to be more effective for muscle recovery than popular high-carbohydrate post-workout drinks, according to a recent study conducted on male college soccer players.
Past research has suggested that milk, due to it's protein and carbohydrate content, can help muscles recover. In other words, it helps muscles rebuild, and limits damage done to them post exercise. Milk has compared favorably in these mechanisms to popular sports drinks, and also has the added benefit of being packed with extra nutrients, such as calcium, magnesium and potassium. Milk, a form of dairy, is also an essential part of a balanced diet, which helps ward off obesity, heart disease, and diabetes, among other severe conditions.
This study looked to further solidify the capabilities of milk, by analyzing the impact of low-fat chocolate milk on 13 male college soccer players. The athletes performed their typical exercise routines for one week, followed by four days of intense exercise, a two-week break, and another cycle of typical-intense exercise. The athletes consumed either low-fat chocolate milk or high-carbohydrate sports drinks following days of intense exercise, in one of the two cycles. The low-fat chocolate milk and high-carbohydrate sports drink had the same amount of total calories.
It was observed that after two days of intense exercise, chocolate milk drinkers had significantly lower levels of creatine kinase, a "marker" of muscle damage, than high-carb drinkers. This observation was seen after four days of intense exercise as well, indicating that chocolate milk aids in muscle recovery more than high-carb sports drinks.
The researchers stress that low-fat chocolate milk is an affordable, enjoyable, and more efficient alternative to other popular post-exercise consumables. Drinking milk within two hours after intense exercise could not only help repair muscles, but replenish calcium, potassium, and other minerals lost through sweat.

Source: Defeat Diabetes Foundation: Delgadillo, Gloria. American College of Sports Medicine news release. June 2009.

Daniel H. Rasolt writes for Defeat Diabetes ® News. Read more of his original content articles.

Copyright © 2009 Defeat Diabetes Foundation, Inc. All rights reserved.

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