Recently the fitness industry has seen a lot of studies claiming that chocolate milk is an even better post-workout recovery drink than Gatorade and other sports drinks. As much as we all want a good excuse to down the deliciously creamy treat, is it actually true that chocolate milk is the best recovery drink option?
The short answer is maybe.
Because chocolate milk contains a lot of water, carbohydrates, protein, and sugar and has a great carb to protein ratio, it has real potential to help athletes restore muscle glycogen and recover more quickly. However, not everyone needs the kind of recovery help that chocolate milk offers.
Athletes doing high intensity workouts for extended periods of time will be more likely to benefit from chocolate milk than those who do smaller workouts. If your client’s workout consists of brisk walks with the goal of losing weight, the sugary drink won’t be of much help. It’s also important to remember that chocolate milk contains dairy which doesn’t sit well with all people and does not fit in with certain diets.
If you have clients who are preparing for a marathon, doing HIIT training, or are ramping up for the Olympics, chocolate milk may be a great recovery drink option! For the rest of us, though, it may be best to simply enjoy a cup as a treat every now and then.