Cow's Milk Twicea As Effective In Rebuilding Muscles Than Soymilk

Armen Hareyan's picture

Rebuilding Muscles

Fitness enthusiasts should reach for a milk shake after exercise instead of those soy-based drinks for effective muscle rebuilding.

Conducted by researchers from Canada's McMaster University, the findings point to what nutritionists have been telling us all along. You don't need expensive high tech powders and supplements to rebuild muscles and to recover after exercise. Good old-fashioned milk does the job. In fact the study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition finds that cow's milk is twice as effective in rebuilding muscles as soymilk post workout.

"Muscle routinely breaks down after exercise," says University of Southern California Kinesiology Professor Dr. Bob Girandola. "Active people need to supply their bodies with the right kind of protein for muscle to recover fully. Cow's milk has that kind of protein, plus a whole host of other nutrients like calcium and vitamin D. Milk is a very nutrient dense food."


The study looked at eight, healthy, young men who lift weights. The experts divided them into two groups, half drinking skim milk and the other half taking soymilk post workout. After a ten-week period, the men who drank skim milk produced twice as much muscle mass. Researchers believe casein in cow's milk may have contributed to the improved muscle growth.

"But this study doesn't pertain just to body builders," stresses Dr. Girandola. "Adults with active lifestyles and children who play sports can also benefit."

Dr. Girandola also says people of all ages can get all the nutrients milk provides in different forms. "It doesn't just have to be white out of the glass. You can add regular milk to smoothies, shakes, chocolate drinks and of course, enjoy it over cereal," says Girandola.

Nutritionists recommend active people drink about two, eight-ounce cups of skim milk after exercising for best results. Researchers also say it is also important that those who workout drink skim milk one to three hours after exercise: the critical window for muscle recovery.