Junk food or health drink?

You’re standing in front of your fridge, sweat dripping after a killer workout, and the thought crosses your mind—“what should I eat now?” While protein hogs the limelight when it comes to post-workout recovery, as a strength or endurance athlete you can’t forget the important role carbohydrates play. I am a personal trainer, child nutritionist, sports & exercise nutritionist and mother who has lost 60kg after weighing in at 134kg when I gave birth to my son in 2009 and here is why Steri stumpie is MY go-to post workout drink.

Now before we get to the “why” I would like to look at the “how” first. How do muscles work? What fuels muscles? These are some of the basics I would like you to understand so that we are all on the same page when it comes down to why I think steri stumpie is the best post workout drink option available and why it can actually benefit your fitness goals.

Let’s start with the basics…

Muscle glycogen?

Instead of reaching right for protein after a workout, take a second to replenish your muscle glycogen. Muscle what?? Muscle glycogen is glucose stored in your muscles. Since your body needs glucose to fuel activity, after you’ve depleted your blood sugar and sugar stored in your liver, your body has to start pulling sugar from your muscles. Your level of training and the amount of carbohydrates in your diet dictates how long this muscle glycogen will provide fuel. Draining your muscle glycogen is commonly referred to as “hitting the wall.” Even if you don’t completely deplete your muscle glycogen, it needs to be replenished in order to fuel the next workout. Low blood sugar, or hypoglycaemia, is common when people work out without enough carbs. The thing with carbs is ratio and timing.

Nutrient timing

Consuming an adequate amount of carbohydrates in the 20 to 30 minutes after a workout restores your muscles’ energy stores, while an adequate amount of protein assists in recovery and repair. If you wait just two hours post workout to consume a meal, your ability to refuel your muscles diminishes by 50%, found a study published in the “Journal of Applied Physiology” in 2002. The International Society of Sports Nutrition notes that protein may also help your muscles absorb the energy from the carbohydrates and store it as glycogen, or fuel. Proper post-workout nutrition may also help augment muscle growth and boost your mood.

How do I know if I am getting the right amount of carbs and protein post workout?

The 3:1 (carbohydrate:protein) post-exercise protocol is rational for the endurance athlete, especially if lean muscle mass recovery is the objective. The low-carb recovery formula appears to be favorable for endurance and lean muscle gain over the 4:1 higher carb patented formula. (Altering the formula in any direction toward more protein or more carbohydrate should be monitored by fat weight gain and lean muscle mass gain accordingly.)

If carbs are the main energy source of muscles, do I really need the protein then?

Absolutely – During exercise, an increase in your body’s release of catabolic hormones causes muscles and protein stores to breakdown. This is why you need to ensure you have the necessary protein in your system to work out effectively (for bodybuilders, an excess is required)

Something to keep in mind

Keep your pre-workout meal light, too much too near to your workout can result in feeling bloated and nausea (Although 2 hours is the sweet spot, you can have your pre-workout meal as late as 60 minutes before your workout, any less time is not recommended). Your muscles rely on fast-burning carbs for fuel. Carbs delay fatigue and are utilised for protein to help with your endurance.

Getting to the good stuff…

Now as you have learned here, the most preferred ratio of carbs and protein post exercise is 3:1 because carbs restore your muscles’ energy stores, while protein assists in recovery and repair, your muscles rely on fast-burning carbs for fuel. Carbs delay fatigue and are utilised for protein to help with your endurance. You should have your post exercise meal 20 – 30 minutes after your workout for optimal absorption.

Well Steri Stumpie has ALL these traits! Let’s have a look at the nutritional information:

  • Protein - 10.5g
  • Carbs – 35g
  • Fat - 5.3g
  • Calcium - 439.7mg

You will notice that the Carbohydrate to protein ratio is an almost perfect 3:1, making this a balanced drink, ideal for muscle recovery, The carbohydrates are a majority of lactose, which is a Disaccharide (two sugar molecules) and sucrose which is a Monosaccharide (one sugar molecule) making it easy for your body to break it down for use. It also only contains 5.3g of fat (remember you do not want to go completely fat free, our bodies still need some fat for organ protection, for healthy brain function, to aid in producing hormones etc.)

Foods providing 20% or more of the RDA are considered to be high sources of a nutrient

Steri stumpie contains a whopping 440mg of calcium, that’s 44% of the South African RDA! Almost half your day’s calcium needs in one bottle! It will also provide some iodine, potassium, phosphorus and vitamins B2 and B12. Did I mention it is convenient and easily accessible post workout?!

The take away…

I hope this has provided understanding on why I promote drinking Steri Stumpie no matter what your goals are and it is not too high in calories (230 calories) either. They have even gone as far as creating a new LITE range, with no added sugar (only 156 calories!) In my personal (and professional) opinion it is a far superior post workout snack and when practicing moderation it’s healthy too! Who says you can’t have your Stumpie and drink it?;)

Still not sold?

Here’s the DL of the benefits this bottle of milky goodness provides:


  • Maintenance of normal bone
  • Muscle growth
  • Muscle maintenance
  • Normal bone growth and development in children


  • Normal growth and development of bones
  • Maintenance of normal bones
  • Maintenance of normal teeth
  • Normal blood clotting
  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Normal muscle function
  • Process of cell division
  • Normal neurotransmission


  • Normal growth of children
  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Maintenance of normal skin
  • Normal functioning of the nervous system
  • Normal cognitive function
  • Normal production and function of thyroid hormones

Vitamin B2 

  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Maintenance of normal skin
  • Normal functioning of the nervous system
  • Maintenance of normal vision
  • Normal iron metabolism
  • Maintenance of normal red blood cells
  • Reduction of tiredness and fatigue

Vitamin B12

  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Normal red blood cell formation
  • Process of cell division
  • Normal immune function
  • Normal psychological function
  • Reduction of tiredness and fatigue


  • Normal functioning of the nervous system
  • Maintenance of normal blood pressure
  • Normal muscle function


  • Normal growth and development of bone
  • Maintenance of normal teeth
  • Normal function of cell membranes
  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism

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