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Milk is something that almost everyone in my family loves! However, our newest member, Jackson wasn’t really sure about milk when we first started offering it to him. We introduced him to his first cup of milk when he was 12-months-old and let me tell you, it wasn’t an easy task!
Jackson is just shy of 14-months now and it’s getting much better! He seems to enjoy his milk now and I’m hoping that some of my tips will help you make the transition from formula to milk a bit easier.
At this stage in Jackson’s life, we are only offering water and milk as beverages. I personally believe these are the best options for him. Milk has a ton of nutrients! The 9 essential nutrients are potassium, vitamin D, calcium and high-quality proteins that help our kids grow. Dairy is one of the top food sources and for a lot of kids in America, it’s a food source that’s missing in their diet. Milk is so affordable and there are lots of fun ways to incorporate milk into your child’s diet!
Here are some of my favorite ways to start adding more milk into your toddler’s life.
When we first introduced milk to Jackson, he wasn’t a fan. This was a little shocking to me since all of my other kids loved milk and were happy to give up their bottles of formula. With Jackson, it took a bit more coaxing. My advice is to start slow! If your toddler takes 8 ounces of formula, try doing 6 ounces of formula with 2 ounces of milk to start. Slowly work your way down on the formula until your child is on milk only. Once they are on milk only you are set! Don’t forget, in every 8-ounce glass of milk, there are 8 grams of protein.
Mix Milk into Cereals
Some children just don’t like to drink a lot of milk and that’s ok! However, it’s still very important to ensure they are getting enough dairy per day. I look for cereals and oatmeals that are packed with nutrients and add in milk. This is a fun and nutritious way to add milk into your child’s diet.
Only Offer Milk & Water
When you offer a toddler juice, soda or other sweet drinks they are usually going to prefer those drinks over water and milk. What I’ve done with all four of my children is to only offer water and milk as beverages for as long as possible. My children didn’t even realize there were other beverage options until they were at least 3-years-old. Thankfully, by that time, they loved water and milk and typically always selected one of those options over juice and other sugary drinks.
Create Recipes With Milk
Now, for some of you, I know that no matter how hard you try you just won’t be able to get your child to enjoy milk. Some kids are super picky and that’s ok! However, as parents, we still need to do our best to ensure they are getting the nutrients from milk. I’ve often opted for recipes that allow me to add in milk. Some of my favorites are mac n cheese, eggs (with milk mixed in), sugar-free homemade pudding, homemade yogurt and homemade mozzarella!
What if you could give your kids a nutrient-rich, delicious, farm fresh beverage with natural protein and no sugar added – all for about a quarter per serving? Surprise – it’s something that’s likely already in your fridge – white milk!
Now head on over to your local grocery store and pick up some milk! Get those kiddo’s drinking AND enjoying milk! You can also visit MilkLife.com for recipe ideas (and they have some good ones).