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Milk Type?

this question might, very well, belong in the Debate Section, but I am going to ask it because I need some answers. Most of you know there is a HUGE debate about dairy milk. That it does not really offer the amount of nutrients and calcium that it claims. So then there is Soy. Appears to be the perfect alternative, high in protein, calcium and iron (something dairy doesn't have). Then I keep reading how bad it is for children because of its effects on their hormones. Which is soo scary to me. Especially because, for some reason, my son was illergic to dairy formula, so we went soy. This said, what are the thoughts on Oat, Coconut and Almond Milks? They don't offer much protein but they are packed with calcium and contain iron and many other nutrients. What is the right answer?

Answer Question

Asked by coolchic320 at 3:14 PM on Sep. 14, 2010 in Toddlers (1-2)

Level 16 (2,992 Credits)
Answers (11)
  • An adult human can only assimilate approx 30 grams of protein a day- count up what is in EVERYTHING you eat on a daily basis, you'll realize you're getting enough.

    We use UNSWEETENED Almond milk here.

    Answer by ObbyDobbie at 3:19 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • Most people who are sensitive to dairy are ALSO sensitive to soy, so it's interesting that you went to soy formula... did it seem to help a lot? Soy DOES have estrogenic effects, so it's important not to eat too many soy products.

    I don't believe that dairy is as bad as some people claim, but I do think we have WAAAYYYY too much of it in our Western diets. Almond milk is really tasty and there are LOTS of other sources of protein. My family gets most of their protein from whole grains, legumes and lean meats, not dairy. I have also used rice milk... it's not as tasty, though lol.

    Try all the milk alternatives and see what you guys like best. I think that for the most part we should be drinking water anyway, so if you do that then it won't really matter too much what kind you choose, since you won't be ingesting large quantities of it.

    Answer by Ati_13 at 3:19 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • There is no right answer; every family is different, every child has different needs. My DD couldn't handle the milk-based formula, so we had her on soy. When she got off formula, we tried regular milk again, and it worked fine, she handled it well and that's what she gets now. I think if you give your kid oat, almond, or coconut milk it's fine, as long as you give them enough protein in other parts of their diet.

    Answer by SarahLeeMorgan at 3:20 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • yes..the soy formula helped I'm not sure. My Hubby and I aren't milk drinkers so this is for my DS. He LOVES his milk so if I were to take it away completely that wouldn't be good either. He is finally starting to drink water! YAY!! So we have been able to cut down on the milk intake. I agree on the protein front from other things. A few months ago with my DS's poor eating habbits I might have worried more but he is getting better.

    Comment by coolchic320 (original poster) at 3:24 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • So, the issue is clouded with dogma and propaganda. The Dairy Bureau writes and supplies MOST of the textbooks for nutritionists, dietitians and foods & nutrition classes in public schools. So, not surprisingly, they write it the way that benefits them. No surprises there.

    The facts are:

    rBGH is dangerous should not be ingested by children. In the US that means omitting most processed and packaged foods, because unless they are actually certified Organic, they probably use rBGH-tainted milk or milk ingredients.

    Other species milks CAN be a healthy addition to a varied diet. There are healthy fats, minerals, proteins and sugars present in milk... that are also present in a huge range of other foods. Milk is NOT a mandatory food for humans, after weaning. Lots of people worldwide have never eaten other species' milks and thrive.

    Soy CAN be a healthy addition to a varied diet, but hormones present make it risky to eat daily.

    Answer by LindaClement at 3:29 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • The other milk you mentioned - soy, almond, ect. - aren't milk. They are processed nuts (whatever), watered down, and have added nutrients. You may as well take a calcium and vitamin D supplement. Coconut is the liquid from the coconut. What they can be good for is people who can't or don't drink milk and like cereal. I don't think people need to or should drink cow's milk but I do eat cheese and yogurt. Kefir may be the best milk product. It is a yogurt like drink that even people that are lactose intollerant can drink and it has several probiotics. You can make it at home. The AAP recommends that soy formula be reserved for babies with the rare diseases of metabolism like galactosemia since it is the absolute worst formula. Babies with allergies are supposed to have the special expensive formula. I don't know what you can do now to make up for soy formula.


    Answer by Gailll at 3:35 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • Soy is far from "perfect". Not only are the hormones an issue, the proteins aren't complete and phytates will prevent the absorption of both calcium and iron. Speaking of those nutrients... in soy (and almond, rice and hemp milk) the calcium and iron are synthetic. They're added and thus not as easily absorbed if they even make it out of the carton! So, definitely not "packed" with calcium... calcium content may be high, but what matters is what the child can absorb.

    My older son had issue with dairy as an infant, so we just waited to give alternative milk until he could handle it (which was around 2, he weaned at 2.5). I would try every natural mammal milk before going to soy, almond and the others are just beverages as far as I'm concerned. You can try cheese and yogurt as they are sometimes better tolerated, and you can definitely get everything he needs without any milk substitute.

    Answer by LeanneC at 3:38 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • Here is the source if anyone is interested about the use of soy formula

    American Academy of Pediatrics Updates Review of Soy Protein-Based Formulas
    Released: 05/08/2008

    Indications for use of soy formula in infants include galactosemia, hereditary lactase deficiency, preference for vegetarian diet, and possibly for secondary lactose intolerance.

    Soy formula is contraindicated for sucrase-isomaltase deficiency and hereditary fructose intolerance. Soy formula is not indicated for cow's milk protein allergy, preterm infants, infantile colic or fussiness, cow's milk protein-induced enteropathy or enterocolitis, or the prevention of atopic disease.

    Answer by Gailll at 3:43 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • My DS can have dairy milk as a toddler but I have worried about the negative media out there...thank you everyone

    Comment by coolchic320 (original poster) at 3:48 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

  • Personally, DD, DH and I drink cow's milk. DS and I drink Almond Milk. I like both cows and almond. DS has a hard time with dairy. I'd switch DD too, but am not a fan of soy, and she is allergic to tree nuts.

    Answer by Krysta622 at 6:52 PM on Sep. 14, 2010

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