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Chocolate milk boosts exercise recovery MORE THAN sports drinks, study finds

Daily Mail logo Daily Mail 14-09-2018 Alex Thompson

© Provided by Getty Chocolate milk boosts exercise recovery more than sports drinks, new research suggests.

The popular milkshake allows athletes to intensely exercise for around six minutes longer than sports drink without tiring, a study found.

The chocolaty drink also improves exercisers' heart rates and lactic-acid levels, which causes cramp, just as well as beverages marketed for post-activity recovery, the research adds.

Study author Dr Amin Salehi-Abargouei from Shahid Sadoughi University in Yazd, Iran, said: 'Chocolate milk contains carbohydrates, proteins, fats, flavonoids, electrolytes, and some vitamins which make this drink a good choice for recovery in athletes.

'The take-home message is that chocolate milk is a low-cost, delicious and palatable option for recovery and provides either similar or superior effects compared with commercial drinks.' 

© Provided by Getty

How the research was carried out 

The researchers analysed 12 studies with a total of around 150 participants.

The participants drank chocolate milk after completing exercise tests, such as running or cycling.

Markers of post-activity recovery were then analysed, such as how tired the participants were, their heart rates and levels of lactic acid, which rises during intense exercise. 

'Sports drinks have the carbohydrates and electrolytes, but no protein'

Kim Spaccarotella from Kean University in Union, New Jersey, who was not involved in the study, said: 'Any food that provides carbohydrate, protein, fluid and electrolytes and is well-tolerated will help promote recovery.

'In addition to chocolate milk, other popular choices are cereal with milk, smoothies, sandwiches or soup. A small meal will even work, if the athlete is feeling hungry.'

© Provided by Getty Mike Saunders, from James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia, added: 'Plain water would not be as effective at promoting fuel replenishment (due to lack of carbohydrates), muscle repair (due to lack of protein), or fluid retention/rehydration (due to low electrolyte content) in comparison to chocolate milk (which has all three).

'Traditional sports drinks have the carbohydrates and electrolytes, but usually no protein.' 

Mr Saunders adds the ideal sports drink usually depends on the individual and the sort of exercise they do, saying: 'Someone at the gym who completes a 20-minute jog might be advised to have a glass of water after exercise so they don't undermine their weight-management goals with unnecessary calories.

'But a distance runner who has completed a hard 15-mile run and has a session of high-intensity intervals to do the next morning could obtain meaningful benefits from a recovery beverage like chocolate milk.' 

The findings were published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 

© Provided by Getty

Children in the UK consume more energy drinks than anywhere else in Europe 

This comes after the Public Health Minister Steve Brine said children in the UK consume more energy drinks than anywhere else in Europe.

Nearly 70 per cent of children aged 10-to-17 in the UK consume energy drinks, with such youngsters having around 50 per cent more than the EU average, a recent report found.

Speaking before the Science and Technology committee earlier this month, Mr Brine added he does not allow his own children to consume energy drinks.

The drinks, which have been linked to headaches, abdominal pain and insomnia, can contain 160mg of caffeine, despite 105mg being the safe daily limit for 11 year olds.

Professor Steven Lipshultz, pediatric cardiologist at the Children's Hospital of Michigan, Detroit, previously said a 10-year-old could get caffeine poisoning after consuming 80mg of caffeine, while a 12-year-old may suffer symptoms, including hallucinations and convulsions, after 100mg.

Sales of the energy drinks in the UK increased by 185 per cent between 2006 and 2015, making the market worth more than £2 billion.

Related: Get an All-Natural Boost From This DIY Energy Drink (Provided by Popsugar)

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