Chocolate Milk: The Choice of Champions

By Megan Lien
Photo by Joseph L. Murphy, Iowa Soybean Association

With the gorgeous weather throughout the summer months in Iowa, many people are back at their summer workout routine. Whether it’s a hike at a local park or an early morning run before work, it’s important to remember the most essential part of the workout–the recovery process.

After a workout, what are you most likely to grab from the fridge to help your body recover? Water? A sports drink?

Kasey Roberts, a member of the Iowa State Women’s Swim Team has a different drink in mind. After completing her morning practice, she drinks chocolate milk to aid in the workout recovery process. After an intense workout, she feels better prepared for the next practice if she drinks chocolate milk.

  Chocolate milk at Hy-Vee helps refuel muscles.

Chocolate milk at Hy-Vee helps refuel muscles.

“I choose chocolate milk because not only is it delicious, but it helps speed up my recovery time so I am ready for my next practice,” says Kasey. “It provides fluids, carbohydrates, proteins and electrolytes that my body needs in order to recover.”

Chocolate milk contains an optimal carbohydrate-to-protein ratio which makes it a great option to choose to help refuel tired muscles. In fact, chocolate milk is known to be twice as effective as a typical sports drink.

Even athletes training for the 2016 Rio Olympic Games drink chocolate milk after practice. Jessica Hardy, a US swimmer preparing for the Olympic Games, says, “I’ve realized how important nutrition is for fueling my body, but more important for me is recovery. When I’m traveling and in between competitions, every single day I’m mindful of it and low-fat chocolate milk is the first thing I drink right after practice.”

Choosing chocolate milk as a post-workout recovery drink is also an economical option.  An 8-ounce glass of milk only costs about 25 cents.

Kim Peter from AE Dairy says, “AE Chocolate Milk is made locally with milk fresh from Iowa family farms using a special Erickson Family recipe that includes three gourmet European cocoas.” Kim also says, “AE Dairy takes every opportunity to share the good news about refueling with chocolate milk after a workout.”  

By grabbing a glass of chocolate milk after a tough workout, not only are you helping your muscles recover quickly, but you are also joining the local dairy farmers in celebrating June Dairy Month!