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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Don't Be Fooled By...What You Hear From Others!

It's the final installment in our April Fool's series (can you believe April is over next week?!) and it's probably the most important one of all.  I have heard this statement made twice in the past month.  Are you ready?

You should drink alcohol following a workout.  

That's right, pick your jaw up off the ground and quit cheering because unfortunately it's not recommended.  I know...the bearer of bad news :(

The first time I heard this statement was following a St. Patty's 5k.  The person mentioned "now we need to go drink beer to replace our carbs...I heard it was good for you".  I had put myself off duty that day so I let it go, laughed, but let it go.  The second time I heard it mentioned was 2 weeks ago from my waitress while dining out.  She said "I don't really like wine, but I do drink it after a workout because I've heard it's good for you"!  Once again, so my service would continue to be good I smiled and then sighed as she left the table.

When I came home, I did some research.  I had to find out where they were hearing this.  I did find one study that mentioned the benefits of wine and another one boasting the benefits of beer.  What I couldn't find were the actual research publications/journals sharing the details of the articles I found in newspapers.  Apparently the details were too good to be shared!

A research study published in The Journal of Applied Physiology (Shirreffs & Maughhan, 1997) concluded that drinks containing over 4% alcohol tend to delay the recovery process (mostly due to dehydration) but less than 4% are okay...in moderation.  Most drinks contain greater than 4% alcohol with the exception of light beer.

Alcohol (in moderation of one drink/day for women and two for men) provides health benefits (to be discussed in a future post) however making a point to "refuel" after every workout is not a good idea unless you can do so in moderation!  For more details on the negative effects alcohol has on the body, read this article http://www.acefitness.org/fitfacts/fitfacts_display.aspx?itemid=2636.

Make sure before you start following the advice of something you "hear" do a little research on it as it may not be true.  Also, make sure there are multiple research findings that support the theory.

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