I have been reading that chocolate milk is bad and that the schools are trying to ban it from their cafeterias. I always thought chocolate milk was great for kids, what’s the problem with chocolate milk?
Right now, schools offer a choice of pop, juice, milk and chocolate milk for lunch beverages. For children who are very active, chocolate milk is a great recovery drink. It provides water (all milk is mostly water), carbohydrates, and essential fats and protein which are great for a recovering body after vigorous activity. While chocolate milk contains more sugar than plain milk, the antioxidants found in chocolate help to offset that. Plain white milk provides the same nutrients without as much sugar and is overall the best choice for most children because it provides fats and proteins they may not get otherwise. On the other hand soda pop is loaded with refined sugar and has detrimental effects on children’s teeth among other things. Juices, even 100% juice, is actually a powerful sugar hit to the body. Read the labels – most of the content is sugar! Juice has none of the great fat or protein nutrients like you find in milk or chocolate milk. Juices leave the body quickly leaving a person hungry, but the sugar calories remain.
I believe this argument about chocolate milk should be more of an argument about high sugar content in beverages. Chocolate milk isn’t nearly the villain it is being made out to be and generally it’s just fine. Plain milk is typically a better choice since it contains less sugar. We would be further ahead to look at all of our beverage choices and choose the ones with the best mix of nutrients and a lower sugar content.