Children's Hospital Colorado

The Importance of Dairy in a Child’s Diet (S5:E23)

For most children, a healthy and well-balanced diet incorporates components from each major food group that nourishes their body and plays a significant role in development. A question that commonly presents to those of us in primary care is what role dairy should play in a child’s diet. Rich in nutrients and health benefits, most dairy products are key components for building and maintaining strong bones.

Listen to pediatric experts discuss what role dairy should play in a child’s diet.

In this episode, Stephanie Gilley, MD, joins us to discuss both the blessings and the challenging implications dairy can have on a child’s health.

Dr. Gilley works in our Growth and Parenting Clinic here at Children’s Hospital Colorado. She is also an instructor in Nutrition at the University of Colorado School of Medicine.

In this episode, our experts discuss:

  • The benefits of dairy for kids and why cow’s milk is recommended for toddlers and young children
  • The consequences of consuming too much cow’s milk
  • How much cow’s milk children need per day
  • Substitutions for cow’s milk and alternative sources of micronutrients such as vitamin D, calcium, B vitamins, iodine and vitamin A
  • Standards for recommending multivitamins to prevent vitamin deficiencies
  • Transitioning from infant formula or human milk to cow’s milk
  • Why kids need more fat than adults and the importance of whole milk from age 1 to 2
  • Why plant-based milk is not appropriate for infants, but can be a healthy part of a child’s diet

Child nutrition services

The Clinical Nutrition department at Children’s Colorado serves infants, children and adolescents with nutrition and feeding problems. We aim to help all children thrive and grow.

Refer a patient to Children’s Colorado.