Monday, July 18, 2011


Chocolate milk has now become "the official beverage" of the Utah High School Activities Association, which oversees high school athletics across the state, according to a press release from the Dairy Council of Utah/Nevada.

Local milk processors will provide chocolate milk at championship events throughout the state.

Last year when I did a story for the Deseret News about the eating and nutritional habits of BYU and U of U football players, the team nutritionists said that chocolate milk provides a good ratio of carbs, protein and fat to help your muscles recover from a tough workout.  

Yet chocolate milk is not without some controversy, since some school districts have stopped serving flavored milk in their cafeterias due to activists' complaints it contains too much sugar. But which is best, a little sugar helping the nutrients go down, or not drinking any milk at all?

From my Deseret News story, I found that the  BYU team is given a special protein shake after workouts that contains Greek yogurt (which has a higher protein content than regular yogurt), powdered milk, fresh juice, strawberries and bananas. Wayne Griffin of the campus' Legends Grill which makes the shake, said they got the basics for their shake when they visited the Olympic training facility in Colorado Springs.  "It offers calcium, potassium, carbohydrates and protein, and they consume it within 30 minutes of a workout to speed recovery."

When my son, Eric, played  football at Davis High School, he would take several shelf-stable cartons of chocolate milk with him in his backpack, along with several PB&J sandwiches. I would also cut up watermelon for an after-practice snack.  He and a couple of his friends could eat a large watermelon in one sitting. When I interviewed sports nutritionists for a story a few years later, I found out that these were all good post-workout foods. Some of them told me you don't need to spend a lot of money on protein powders, sports drinks and muscle shakes, because the "real food" such as PB & J sandwiches, fruit, yogurt and yes, chocolate milk, can give them the nutrition they need. 

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