What type of milk is best for toddlers?

Whether you’re a parent, grandparent, or other adult involved in caring for a toddler, it can be confusing to know which milk is best to provide. Here are the options:

Whole cow’s milk (3.25% milkfat) and whole, pasteurized goat’s milk fortified with vitamin D and folic acid are the only suitable milk or milk alternatives for children less than two years old.

After age two, fortified soy drink can be used as an alternative to cow’s milk.
Options such as almond, coconut, rice, hemp and other plant-based drinks, do not contain enough protein and fat to meet the needs of a growing toddler.

While fortified almond beverages and other plant-based drinks can be offered after age two, they don’t count as an alternative to cow’s milk based on our national healthy eating guidelines.

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I am lactose intolerant. Can I still consume dairy?

If you’re lactose intolerant, you don’t necessarily need to avoid dairy. You can still safely (and comfortably) eat dairy-based foods even if you have lactose intolerance.

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Are there any additives in Canadian milk?

Milk is strictly regulated in Canada. Nothing is added except vitamins A and D.

Does high or low-fat milk have more calcium?

Milk, whether it’s full fat or skim, has about the same amount of calcium and is considered an excellent source of naturally occurring calcium. Enjoy the type that fits your needs! Learn more about calories and fat in milk.

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I’m looking for nutrition advice. Where can I find it?

BC residents can dial 8-1-1 and ask to speak to a dietitian. The service supports the information, education and counselling needs of B.C. residents and health professionals.

For tailored healthy eating advice, Dietitians of Canada’s Find a Dietitian service can help you find someone in your area.

Visit Health Canada to find out more about national eating recommendations for various ages and stages.

What milk or milk alternative is OK for my 1-year old to drink?

Whole cow’s milk (3.25% milkfat) and whole, pasteurized goat’s milk fortified with vitamin D and folic acid are the only suitable milks or milk alternatives (other than breastfeeding) for children less than two years old. Fortified soy drink can be used as an alternative to cow’s milk after age two.

 

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What is the Difference Between Lactose Intolerance and Milk Allergy?

Lactose intolerance should not be confused with milk allergy, which is much less common. Milk allergy is a sensitivity to the protein in milk, not lactose (a carbohydrate), and occurs most often in infants.

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Does yogurt contain active culture?

Yes, all yogurts in the BC marketplace contain active culture. The culture is added after pasteurization.

Does milk cause mucus?

Studies have shown that drinking milk and eating milk products does not cause mucus production. However, higher-fat milk and soy beverages may create the illusion that there is more mucus in the mouth due to their full-bodied texture. Drinking 1% or skim milk may reduce this perception.

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Does lactose contain sugar? Should I limit my intake?

Lactose is a naturally occurring sugar found in dairy products.

There is no need to limit the consumption of foods that contain naturally-occurring sugars. The types of sugars that we should try to limit include added sugars and free sugars.

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