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Dairy Council

Sport & Exercise Nutrition

There is a growing body of scientific research on the role of milk and dairy foods in sport and exercise nutrition. The nutritional composition of milk – its protein, carbohydrate and electrolyte content – suggests that it would be useful as a sports drink. A number of studies have confirmed a role for milk, particularly for recovery after exercise, including for effective rehydration and muscle reconditioning and repair. More recently, the potential benefits of consuming dairy before exercise for calcium balance and bone health have also been highlighted.

For a summary of Milk & Dairy in Sport & Exercise Nutrition click here


We’ve included a selection of presentations on sport and exercise nutrition from our conferences and symposia below, including our ‘Milk It’ Seminars

European Federation of the Associations of Dietitians (EFAD) Food Matrix Webinar, June 2022

Webinar - From athletes to older adults: food-focused approaches for maximising the health effects of protein

Dr Nicholas A Burd, University of Illinois, USA
Food matrix effects – implications for the impact of protein on muscle

Dr Caoileann Murphy, Teagasc, Trinity College Dublin and Australian Catholic University
Practical aspects of optimising food-focused protein nutrition

Download the webinar booklet

Watch the webinar here

DCNI ‘Milk It’ Online Sports Nutrition Seminar, November 2021

Dr Nicholas Burd, University of Illinois
Food matrix effects on protein nutrition – implications for athletes

Click here to watch a recording of the webinar


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Online Sports Nutrition Seminar, November 2020

Professor Louise Burke, Australian Catholic University 
The role of dairy in contemporary sports nutrition

Click here to watch a recording of the webinar


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, December 2019

Professor Louise Burke, Australian Institute of Sport
New ideas about calcium and bone health in athletes


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2018

Dr Oliver C Witard, University of Stirling 
Protein from dairy, meat, fish and plants: what’s the difference for muscle recovery in athletes?

Kathryn Stewart, Dietitian and Sports Nutritionist
Challenges of the ‘Race Around Ireland’: 2,150km, non–stop ultra–cycling event

DCNI Nutrition & Health Conference, Belfast, April 2018

Professor Wendy Kohrt, University of Colorado, Denver
Exercise, hormones and disease prevention  

DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2017

Prof Susan Lanham–New, University of Surrey
Influences of diet and exercise on bone health in athletes

Danielle Logue, University College Dublin
Relative energy deficiency in sport: an update

Renee McGregor, Performance and Eating Disorder Specialist Dietitian & Holly Rush, Ultra distance runner
When healthy living goes bad

DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2016

Dr Emma Cockburn, Middlesex University
Milk and muscle recovery: an update

Ruth Wood–Martin, IRFU
Intro: impact of nutrition on health, training & performance

Sports nutrition insights from Rio 2016:
Dr Sharon Madigan, Irish Institute of Sport – Rio reflections
Ciara Mageean – From Portaferry to Rio
Dr Hannah MacLeod – GB women’s hockey team: journey to success


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2015

Mhairi Keil, Lead Nutritionist British Gymnastics
Practical sports nutrition insights: the performance nutritionist’s perspective

Dr Lewis James, Loughborough University
Post–exercise rehydration: the emerging role of milk


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2014

Wendy Martinson, Lead Nutritionist GB Rowing 
Practical sports nutrition insights – the sports nutritionist’s perspective

Prof Kevin Tipton, University of Stirling
An update on post–exercise recovery strategies: a role for milk?

DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2012

Dr Naomi Cermak, Maastricht University
Does protein improve adaptations to training – a role for milk?

Practical nutrition insights from the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics:

Alex Popple, Lead Performance Nutritionist, British Swimming
Dr Sharon Madigan, Olympic Council of Ireland Nutritionist


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, November 2011

Professor Ron Maughan, Loughborough University
Optimising rehydration after exercise

Dr Emma Stevenson, Northumbria University
Putting post–exercise recovery strategies into practice


DCNI ‘Milk It’ Sports Nutrition Seminar, Belfast, October 2010

Professor Ron Maughan, Loughborough University
Milk and rehydration

Dr Emma Cockburn, Northumbria University
Milk and muscle recovery

Dr Andrea McNeilly, University of Ulster
Sports nutrition in practice with young people

DCNI Nutrition & Health - What's New? Conference, Belfast, February 2010

Dr Susan Shirreffs, Loughborough University
Developments in sports nutrition – strategies for post–exercise recovery