A Legen-Dairy Guide to Chocolate Milk
Everything You Should (And Probably Shouldn’t) Know About this Heavenly Substance.
“7 days without chocolate makes one weak.”
“Chocolate and milk have always been good friends. The other day when they met, they had a real chocolate milkshake.”
“If you think a milk bath is great, you should try a chocolate milk bath. I tried it and loved it, until I got out and realized I had gained a bunch of weight.”
Alright, we’ll stop with the lame chocolate milk jokes and get down to more serious things, like actually learning about chocolate milk.
It’s fair to say that, as a local farm and creamery we’re pretty obsessed with all things dairy. And we get really excited when dairy and chocolate can be combined into one topic (or one drink), even if it gets a bit messy.
So here’s our legen-dairy (and likely somewhat random) overview of all things chocolate milk. Enjoy!
Table of Contents
What is the History of Chocolate Milk?
We know humans have been drinking milk for 1,000s of years. But, how did this serendipitous combo of chocolate and milk become a thing.
The general consensus is that Sir Hans Sloane, a renowned British medical doctor and member of the Royal College of Physicians, gets the credit for the existence of chocolate milk in popular culture. However, his brainstorm for mixing milk and chocolate came from seeing Jamaicans mix cocoa with water and other spices, a practice that dates back as far as the Mayans according to archeological evidence.
Sir Hans couldn’t stomach the Jamaican blend of chocolate, water, and spices but recognized some health value in the consumption of chocolate. So, he had the idea of combining cocoa with milk to make a more palatable mixture that he thought would have medicinal benefits.
His promotion of a milk and chocolate blend turned the glorious liquid into a mainstream commodity in Europe. Thank God!
So, if chocolate milk was originally invented for medicinal purposes, it begs the following question:
Is Chocolate Milk Good For You?
There’s a lot of variables that determine the answer to this question. Many studies have shown specific benefits that come from drinking chocolate milk. But the amount of sugar consumed and the poor quality of milk used in a lot of mainstream chocolate milk might outweigh the benefits.
However, we believe that chocolate milk can be good for you if made with healthy milk and consumed in proper proportion to other foods and liquids.
A good chocolate milk has been shown to help with the following:
- Muscle recovery and growth from exercising due to the proteins, electrolytes, and vitamins in chocolate milk.
- Potassium input to help regulate blood pressure. A cup of chocolate milk can contain more than 10% of your daily potassium needs.
- Good fiber input that helps regulate the digestive system and can eliminate bloating and indigestion. However, highly processed milk may do more to irritate the digestive system than the fiber does to diminish the irritation. Pay attention to the quality of milk that is used.
- Healthy bone structure due to calcium and vitamin D present in chocolate milk. However the bodies ability to process and absorb these vitamins and minerals may be limited depending on how highly processed the milk and the presence (or lack thereof) of other vitamins and minerals in the body. Research has shown that low levels of vitamin K in the body limit the body’s ability to absorb calcium from milk and other substances.
Is Chocolate Milk a Superfood or Just Super Food?
There’s no question that chocolate milk is super food! But does it classify as a true superfood?
Superfoods are generally considered to be products that contain a dense amount of nutrition and health benefits. There really is no scientific classification that determines if a food is a superfood or not. So, it can be a subjective determination.
While we like chocolate milk A LOT and think it can have really good value in a diet, we would hesitate to classify it as a superfood, due to the amount of sugar present in a cup of chocolate milk. However, it still has enough value that we advocate drinking it regularly. Just don’t rely on chocolate milk alone to keep you alive. We know it’s tempting, but moderation still has value even when it comes to chocolate milk.
Is Chocolate Milk Good for Cats and Dogs?
Very simply, you should not feed chocolate milk to cats and dogs. It seems like a substance this delightful shouldn’t be limited to just human enjoyment. Admittedly, your pet dog or cat would really enjoy swigging some chocolate milk with you while you relax with them on the back porch. But, they wouldn’t enjoy the nasty repercussions after the chocolate hits their stomach and begins to poison them.
Chocolate, in any form is toxic to both dogs and cats. In fact, chocolate toxicity is one of the more common problems vets see. So, even if Lassie uses her pleading eyes to beg you to share your refreshing bottle of chocolate milk with her, don’t do it. There’s a term for that: tough love!
Can Chocolate Milk Help You Lose Weight?
What an interesting and counter-intuitive thought: drink a high-calorie bottle of chocolate milk and lose milk. Is this possible?
Well, there’s a variety of factors here. When used in conjunction with good exercise and healthy eating, chocolate milk may provide some additional value in weight loss due to the calcium present in the drink. However, the sugar content does somewhat work against the weight loss value.
If you feel like you need to drink sweetened drinks, drinking chocolate milk in place of sodas and other sweetened drinks will definitely make it more likely for you to lose weight though.
Should You Drink Chocolate Milk Before Bed?
Some people have theorized that the calcium present in a cup of milk may have a relaxing effect on the body and help you sleep better. However, there is not any real good data to back this claim up. But whether that’s true or not, there is good data to show that sugar intake is energizing. So, even if milk itself might help you sleep better, the sugar present in chocolate milk is more likely to make you feel like solving the world’s problems rather than sleeping.
By all means, drink chocolate milk and solve the world’s problems. Just don’t expect it to help you sleep until you’ve worn yourself out from your efforts in problem-solving.
Are there Different Kinds of Chocolate Milk?
The most common and popular variety of chocolate milk is made with a form of milk chocolate. However some companies have experimented with a white chocolate milk, as well as a dark chocolate milk.
Here at the Reedsville Creamery, we have stuck with common practice in using a milk chocolate variety for our chocolate milk. But, what setups us apart and what we think makes all the difference is the quality of the milk itself. So while there may be different kinds of chocolate used in chocolate milk, there are also different “kinds” of milk used to make this amazing drink. See the question below on the best kind of chocolate milk for more details on how the milk can make so much of a difference.
Can I Drink Chocolate Milk Every Day?
Absolutely! Next question. ?
Actually, this is largely a question that depends on other circumstances. Regularly drinking chocolate milk should be perfectly fine for an active, healthy person. However, do make sure to purchase chocolate milk that is made with fresh, low-processed, hormone free milk so it retains it’s nutritional value. We definitely do not advocate for chocolate milk to replace drinking pure water or eating other necessary foods. But, by all means, a cup of chocolate milk after a workout or as an afternoon treat is a great habit to put in your life. Especially, if that cup is replacing a very unhealthy can of soda.
What is the Best Chocolate Milk?
Glad you asked. Finding a healthy milk paired with a perfect balance of creamy, rich (and yet not overpoweringly sweet) chocolate can be difficult to find.
We highly recommend purchasing chocolate milk that is made using non-homogenized, hormone-free milk. The quality of the milk is just as large a factor as the quality of the chocolate in a good chocolate milk.
Of course, we’re biased toward this because that is what we use here at the Reedsville Creamery. But, we’re also pretty passionate about this topic. Because we believe the massive, dairy-lict milk industry has stripped milk of so much of it’s value through terrible processing practices. The only people benefiting from that are the big guys who are lining their pockets.
We often hear that our chocolate milk is the best chocolate milk in Pennsylvania. In fact, many customer claim it’s the best they’ve ever drank. This might be due to the fact that we’re using deliciously fresh, creamline milk with the perfect amount of chocolate mixed in to make a creamy-smooth, delightfully drinkable bottle of chocolate milk.
But don’t take our word for it. Try it yourself and let us know what you think.
If you’re not craving it already, maybe this delightful loop of chocolate milk being poured will help give you that craving.
Happy Drinking Folks!