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Transitioning From Formulation to Entire Milk

As soon as formula-fed infants flip 1, they need to swap from ingesting components to complete cow’s milk (except there are allergy issues). The American Academy of Pediatricians (AAP) recommends that kids ages 12 to 24 months drink complete milk fairly than reduced-fat milk, as toddlers want the additional fats of their diets to assist optimum mind growth.

In particular instances, low-fat milk could also be warranted if a baby has a powerful household historical past of coronary heart illness. Every little one will should be assessed individually, as what they eat and drink as a complete, in addition to what meals they take pleasure in and have entry to, ought to be included within the determination. Nevertheless, typically, complete cow’s milk is the advisable possibility.

When to Transition From Formulation to Milk

It might be tempting to change your formula-fed child to common milk earlier than age 1 for a number of causes, together with value financial savings and comfort. However components is designed to imitate the dietary parts of breast milk and is the best meals (after breast milk itself) for infants. Formulation comprises simply the appropriate steadiness of fat, protein, and different vitamins to assist correct development.

Cow’s milk not solely would not have the suitable dietary make-up for infants, but it surely comprises sure proteins and the next focus of minerals that may be troublesome for these underneath 12 months previous to digest.

The composition of cow’s milk is, nonetheless, well-suited to a toddler’s digestion and dietary wants and may substitute components after their first birthday. This substitute doesn’t need to occur suddenly, however might be gradual.

You may even see toddler formulation on retailer cabinets. These merchandise are dearer than milk, however they aren’t any extra nutritious and for almost all of children they’re pointless.

In case your little one has a restricted weight loss program and/or gained’t drink milk, focus on this with their physician to see if dietary supplements are applicable, or if they’ll get the vitamins they want from different meals, together with different dairy merchandise.

The right way to Make the Swap

There are a number of methods to perform this transition, and your little one will seemingly offer you robust alerts about what’s working for them (and never). Some kids reply positively if their caregivers merely change all of their cups or bottles to complete milk as soon as they attain 12 months previous. This technique usually works for teenagers who rapidly adapt to vary.

It’s possible you’ll wish to do this method to see how your little one responds. If it would not work, or for those who assume your little one might reply higher to a extra gradual method from the get-go, one among these methods might assist with the transition:

  • For a kid who’s a extra cautious or restricted eater: A slower transition normally works higher. For instance, you would possibly substitute one bottle of components with a cup of complete milk each few days or even weeks. The primary bottle within the morning and the final bottle of the day might be more durable for kids to surrender, so that you would possibly contemplate switching these out final, as soon as your child is ingesting milk all through the day.
  • In case your child refuses plain milk: You would possibly begin mixing components and milk collectively. At first, simply add a bit milk (for example, one ounce), in order that your child is usually ingesting components. Each few days, add extra milk and fewer components within the bottles in order that your little one slowly will get used to the style. Ultimately, you’ll be able to transition to only having milk within the bottles or cups and no components in any respect.

It might probably assist to serve the milk on the identical temperature that your little one is used to for components. Nevertheless, for those who plan to heat milk, by no means achieve this in a microwave. This may create areas of intense warmth that may burn your little one.

Making the transition from components to exploit requires you to make some modifications in how you consider feeding your little one as properly. Two necessary factors to remember:

  • Not like components and breast milk within the first 12 months, mother and father ought to consider milk as a beverage, not a meal. Youngsters ages 12 to 24 months ought to be ingesting 16 to 24 ounces of complete milk a day. A great share of their diet ought to come from stable meals within the toddler years.
  • As a baby eats extra stable meals, particularly if this contains dairy, a few of the milk might be changed with water. (Juice and sweetened or non-nutritive drinks aren’t advisable.) Your pediatrician can supply steering on adjusting the ounces/day aim over time.

If Your Child Has a Milk Allergy

In case your child has a milk protein allergy or intolerance, cow’s milk might not be a good selection for them. As a substitute, soy milk generally is a good different, as it’s near cow’s milk when it comes to diet. On this case, you can even contemplate a toddler components specifically designed for kids with milk allergic reactions.

Seek the advice of along with your pediatrician to assist select a milk substitute that’s each allergy-safe and provides your little one correct diet.

In case your little one has not but been identified with an allergy, however you watched one, it is necessary to get them examined to substantiate it or decide if one thing else may be occurring. Know, too, that children might outgrow or develop new allergic reactions over time.

Whereas some mother and father would possibly merely desire to make use of soy milk, almond milk, or different milk options as an alternative of cow’s milk, these merchandise usually are decrease within the fats and protein little youngsters want. They need to solely be used as substitutes when wanted and underneath the oversight of a healthcare skilled or dietitian.

When to Swap From Bottles to Cups

The AAP recommends introducing ingesting from cups at round 6 months, so many toddlers are already used to utilizing them (both alone or together with bottles) when it comes time to transition to common milk.

In case your child continues to be solely utilizing bottles, you would possibly contemplate making the swap to complete milk and cups or sippy cups on the identical time. Once more right here, whether or not or not it is a good thought will depend on your little one.

In the event that they roll with modifications and luxuriate in a wide range of meals, doing this will work simply effective. When you assume making each modifications without delay will likely be irritating on your little one, change to exploit first after which steadily transition to cups later. Typically, it may be enjoyable for teenagers to observe with small open cups, whether or not they include water or milk.

A Phrase From Verywell

When you swap your child to cow’s milk they usually refuse it, give it time as you strive these recommendations. Seek the advice of their pediatrician in case you are anxious about their dietary consumption. If wanted, you’ll be able to accommodate a short lived dip in milk-drinking by including different sources of calcium, like yogurt and cheese, into their weight loss program.

Keep away from making an attempt to drive them to drink milk. If it turns into an influence battle, they are going to seemingly be much more proof against ingesting milk.

Verywell Household makes use of solely high-quality sources, together with peer-reviewed research, to assist the information inside our articles. Learn our editorial course of to study extra about how we fact-check and preserve our content material correct, dependable, and reliable.
  1. Riley LK, Rupert J, Boucher O. Diet in toddlers. Am Fam Doctor. 2018;98(4):227-233.

  2. Muth N. Beneficial drinks for younger kids ages 0-5. American Academy of Pediatrics.

By Vincent Iannelli, MD

Vincent Iannelli, MD, is a board-certified pediatrician and fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics. Dr. Iannelli has cared for kids for greater than 20 years.

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