How much milk should I feed my one-year-old?
My daughter is 11 months old, and we're looking forward to the big milestone of her first birthday. She is now eating 3 meals a day, along with 4 bottles of formula (total of around 19 oz.) in a 24 hour period. I would like to stop the formula once she's 1, and replace this with cow's milk. How much to give her in a 24 hour period? She is fond of yogurt and cheese and cottage cheese, which she eats as part of her regular meals.
When cow’s milk is introduced at one year, the recommended amount is 16-24 ounces per day (24 hours). Yogurt is equivalent to milk, ounce for ounce, but cheeses count differently. A cup (8 oz) of milk can be replaced by: 1-1/2 oz of hard cheese, 1/3 cup shredded cheese, 2 oz of processed cheese such as American cheese, or half a cup of ricotta cheese. These equivalents are from the USDA MyPyramid site:http://www.mypyramid.gov/pyramid/milk_counts_print.html, which is a very user and child friendly resource for nutritional info. And we always recommend that when you get rid of the formula, you get rid of the bottle at the same time!
Choose whole milk until age 2, unless there is a strong family history or high risk of obesity, in which case 2% milk is advised, but only if your provider recommends this at your child’s one year checkup. Also, be sure that you child is taking a multivitamin to cover her Vitamin D requirements in particular, 400 IU (Int’l Units) daily.
If your child is still breastfeeding, the frequency of nursing has likely decreased, and may or may not still be adequate to cover milk requirements. However, it’s a good idea to introduce some cow’s milk from a cup if you want your child to get used to its taste for the future.
On a general note: If your child has a milk allergy or sensitivity, soy milk can be used instead of cow's milk and is rich in protein and fiber. Keep in mind that soy milk contains about a quarter the amount of calcium as cow's milk, so an emphasis on other high calcium containing foods (sardines, almonds, beans, and leafy green vegetables) should be made, or the addition of a calcium supplement.