The Dairy Council conducted a survey of 70 young athletes from the English Schools’ Athletic Association that showed the vast majority of them used water and sports drinks after exercise but were unaware of the qualities of milk.
When the athletes learned of the positive impact milk could have on their training and rehydration, the majority said they would consider consuming milk after exercise.
The results of the survey were revealed at a seminar hosted by The Dairy Council at the Institute of Physics in London today. Research by Loughborough and Northumbria Universities has shown that milk can enhance athletic performance, is effective in rehydration and can be beneficial in the repair of exercise-induced muscle damage. However, more than 90% of teenage competitors have revealed they didn’t know of the benefits that milk offer them in terms of training and rehydration.
The Dairy Council is to support, in conjunction with SportsAid, four aspiring athletes in an effort to raise awareness of the benefits that milk can bring to sport. The athletes involved are teenage successes in football, rugby, athletics and gymnastics.
Dr Susan Shirreffs from Loughborough University said: “The research into post-exercise rehydration suggests that the electrolyte content of the drink consumed plays a key factor in the rehydration process.
“Milk has naturally high electrolyte content and similar levels of carbohydrate to those in commercially available sports drinks. The results of the study suggest that milk is more effective at replacing sweat losses and maintaining a normal state of body water than plain water or a commercially available sports drink.”
The seminar also heard how research carried out by Northumbria University has revealed the benefit of consuming milk to repair exercise-induced muscle damage. In the study, milk and milk-based drinks were measured against sports drinks in reducing exercise-induced muscle damage following resistance-based eccentric exercise.
Dr Judith Bryans, director of The Dairy Council, said: “Milk is a readily available, natural, high-quality and inexpensive product. Our survey has shown that when young athletes are made aware of the benefits of milk, they say they will happily try it. In view of the recent research, it should be a real priority for us all to get across to our young athletes how milk can enhance their performance and help them hit the medal trail.”
Source: The Dairy Council
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2020