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After One Year Old: Is Cow’s Milk or Formula Better? When Should You Choose Formula if Your Child Isn’t Eating Well?

More and more parents know that formula milk is no longer necessary after one year old, and children can drink pure milk. So which one is better, pure milk or formula milk? After all, formula milk is formulated, is it better than ordinary pure milk? If the child doesn’t eat well, should he drink formula milk? What should you pay attention to when drinking infant formula? Today let’s talk about what kind of milk to drink after one year old.

After one year old,
Which is better, pure milk or formula milk?

From a nutrition and health perspective,

Pure milk is good enough, toddler formula is not better.

Toddler formula sounds “more nutritious.” When promoting products, they often tell us that various nutritional elements are added to promote children’s immunity, promote children’s brain development, etc. In fact, there are no proven additional health benefits for children drinking infant formula.

For children after one year old, a healthy and balanced diet is the guarantee of nutrition and health. A healthy and balanced diet includes dairy products, i.e. milk, yogurt or cheese, but does not include infant formula.

after one year old
Can I drink infant formula?

Can drink.

Infant formula milk generally refers to formula milk for children aged 1 to 3 years old. The main ingredient is usually milk powder. During the processing, some nutrients, vegetable oils, and sweeteners such as corn syrup are added. Infant formula generally contains more sodium and less protein than pure cow’s milk.

Infant formula can actually be understood as a milk-based “milk drink”. Of course, compared to other milk drinks, the amount of added sugar in infant formula is much lower.

Although toddler formula has no additional health benefits, it can still provide children with calcium just like pure cow’s milk. Therefore, it is not absolutely impossible for children after one year old to drink formula milk.

Children who don’t eat well
Do you need to drink formula milk?

If a child does not eat well, it cannot be remedied by drinking formula milk.

Various publicity about infant formula milk can easily make people feel that it is healthier, more balanced, and more nutritious. It can also easily make people mistakenly believe that children do not eat well, and drinking formula milk means they do not have to worry about nutritional issues.

In fact, the nutritional and health significance of a healthy and balanced diet cannot be replaced by infant formula. If your child doesn’t eat well, don’t and cannot expect to drink infant formula to solve the problem.

If you don’t eat well and rely on formula milk to make up for it, you will neglect the cultivation of good eating habits from an early age, which is a hidden danger.

Drink infant formula milk after one year old
Don’t ignore these two points

1 More is not better

Some children like to drink formula milk very much, and parents feel that formula milk promotes health and has balanced nutrition, so their children love to drink it, and they are happy to let their children drink it.

There are risks in doing so.

For children after one year old, whether it is pure milk or infant formula, the more the better.

When a child drinks more than 500-700 ml of milk per day, the demand for other foods is likely to decrease, and problems such as poor eating, picky eaters, and partial eclipse may occur.

Children like to drink milk and eat less solid food, especially fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, which may increase the risk of constipation.

In addition, if a child drinks more formula milk and continues to eat other foods without reducing the amount, this may mean additional energy intake, thereby increasing the risk of obesity.

How much is appropriate to drink?

According to the 2016 edition of the Dietary Guidelines for Chinese Residents, the recommended daily milk volume for 1-2 year olds is approximately 500ml, and the recommended daily milk volume for preschool children is 300-400ml. The current official recommendation in the United States is that children aged 2-3 years old should have 480 ml of milk per day.

According to the current official recommendations in Australia, children aged 1-2 years old should have 1-1.5 servings of dairy products per day; children aged 2-3 years old should have 1.5 servings of dairy products per day. One serving of dairy products is equivalent to: 250 ml of milk, or 200 g of yogurt, or 40 g of cheese.

Therefore, if a child only drinks infant formula and does not eat any other dairy products, the recommended daily milk volume for 1-2 years old is 250-375 ml; for 2-3 years old, the recommended daily milk volume is 375 ml.

Taken together, for children aged 1 to 3 years old, 500 ml of milk per day is completely sufficient, and drinking 375 ml per day is appropriate. If the daily milk volume exceeds 500 ml or even 700 ml, it may cause other health concerns.

2 Don’t ignore the price factor

Toddler formula is usually more expensive than pure cow’s milk or regular milk powder. However, more expensive infant formula cannot bring more health benefits to healthy children. Therefore, there is no need to spend extra money on formula milk for the claimed health benefits. Of course, if parents just want to buy infant formula milk for their children, not for the health benefits, and there is no need to spend more money, then it is not a popular science topic, but a personal choice.

Finally, to summarize:

After the child turns one year old, it is good enough for the child to drink pure milk. Infant formula is neither necessary nor better. From the perspective of nutrition and health, more attention should be paid to children’s daily healthy and balanced diet and good eating habits.
If your child likes to drink infant formula, he or she can drink it, but remember: formula cannot replace a healthy and balanced diet, nor can it solve problems such as picky eaters and partial eclipses.