How important is milk for children? Milk is one of the most important foods for a child. It contributes to its good health and growth as it is a source of essential nutrients. Analyzing its nutritional value, we find that it is rich in protein, carbohydrates (mainly lactose), fats, calcium, vitamins, minerals, and trace elements, even in amounts that cover a significant proportion of the body’s daily nutrients.
What does a glass of milk offer him?
An example is a summary table showing the percentage of needs in some very basic ingredients that are covered by a glass of milk:
- 30% of Recommended Calcium Daily Intake (SDS)
- 26% of Riboflavin TB
- 25% of the vitamin D vitamin D
- 25% of phosphorus salt
- 22% of the vitamin B12 GI
- 16% of protein SCD
- 11% of potassium salt
- 10% of vitamin A.
- 10% of niacin salt
What does it contain
More specifically, in terms of individual nutrients, milk contains significant amounts of high biological value proteins that are essential for the development and maintenance of body structures, such as the child’s muscular and immune systems.
It is also one of the most important sources of calcium for the body. Calcium, as is well known, is a key constituent of bone, and is associated with a number of essential processes in the body. This makes it important to recruit high calcium groups, such as children and adolescents, for their well-being.
However, in addition to its high calcium content, milk also contains significant amounts of vitamin D. This vitamin, in addition to its other functions, contributes to the optimal absorption of calcium by the body.
Although vitamin D is synthesized by the body itself by exposure to sunlight, recent studies in our country show that even in a sunny Mediterranean country such as Greece, low levels of this vitamin are found in the population, which necessitates an increase in its dietary intake.
Milk also contains significant amounts of Complex B vitamins, such as biotin, pantothenic acid, and riboflavin, which are associated with essential functions of the body, such as the proper functioning of the central nervous system, the production of energy and the supply of oxygen to the heart, and in the muscles.
Particularly important is its potassium content. Potassium has been the subject of intense research activity in recent years as it has been associated with a reduced risk of developing hypertension and protection against coronary heart disease. Dairy products generally contain high amounts of potassium.
If he doesn’t drink his milk?
Childhood is a period during which the needs of certain nutrients are significantly increased in order to achieve a healthy growth rate. Among these, calcium occupies a particularly important position, as, as has already been mentioned, sufficient uptake is necessary to “build” a solid skeleton.
So milk is definitely one of the richest sources of calcium in the diet, so its daily consumption by children usually covers much of their daily calcium needs.
On the other hand, however, it is not the only source of this essential ingredient. Thus, in cases where a child is not used to milk, his or her needs can be met by other sources.
In particular, yogurt and cheeses are equally good sources of calcium, like a teaspoon of white yogurt and a portion of cheese (30 grams, that is, 1 slice of toast or 1 piece in matchbox size) offer a similar amount of calcium compared to milk.
Of course, in the case of cheeses, it is important to apply the ‘rule of measure’, as most of them, in addition to calcium, also have a high content of fat, calories, and sodium.
On the other hand, some of the recommended daily calcium intakes may be covered by other sources, such as green leafy vegetables, broccoli, certain legumes and nuts (dried beans, almonds, sesame seeds), as well as small fish consumed with bones (sardine, atherina, anchovy).
How important is milk for children