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Milk helps exercise recovery Print
Consuming milk can assist muscle recuperation after exercise according to a study published in the August edition of the Journal of Applied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism. The researchers found certain proteins and carbohydrates found in milk assisted in mitigating exercise-induced muscle damage (EIMD).

"At 48 hour post-EIMD, milk and milk-based protein–CHO supplementation resulted in the attenuation of decreases in isokinetic muscle performance and increases in creatine kinase and myoglobin,” the researchers wrote. “This study supports the growing volume of literature which suggests that milk is a powerful post exercise recovery aid,” said the director of The Dairy Council in the UK. “Previous research has shown milk to be an effective rehydration solution, while this is the first study to suggest that drinking milk following muscle-damaging exercise may decrease muscle damage.”

EIMD occurs when protein structures break down within the muscle, and reduces muscle performance.

“The results found that, when consumed immediately after resistance-based muscle damaging exercise, both semi-skimmed milk and milk-based CHO-P helped to preserve more muscle than either the sports drink or water,” the Dairy Council said.

Chocolate milk
The study is not the first to explore the potential benefits of milk consumption. A 2006 study published in the International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism assessed a group of cyclists who rode until their muscles were depleted of energy, then rested for four hours before cycling again to exhaustion. During rest they were given either chocolate milk, which has an optimal ratio of 4:1 for carbohydrates to protein, an isotonic sports drink or a high protein sports drink. Cyclists who had chocolate milk rode about 50 per cent longer than those who drank the protein drink and about as long as those who drank the isotonic preparation.

At the recent Beijing Olympic Games chocolate milk was conspicuous by its presence with high profile athletes such as American multiple gold-medal winning swimmer, Michael Phelps regularly seen drinking it.

The superiority of milk to other liquids is underlines by the fact that Rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam would recite after drinking:

اللهم بارِك ْ لَنا فِيْهِ وَ ارْزُقْنَا خَيْرًا مِنْهُ
O Allah bless us in this and grant us better than it.

Yet when he drank milk he would recite:
اللهم بارِك ْ لَنا فِيْهِ وَ زِدْنَا مِنْهُ
O Allah bless us in this and grant us more of it.
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