Looking for Dairy-Free Alternatives for 1 Year Olds

Updated on August 28, 2006
C.M. asks from Green Bay, WI
16 answers

Does anyone have any safe suggestions for avoiding dairy (Vit. D Milk) for 1-year olds. Pediatricians recommend offering Vit. D Whole Milk at 1 year of age. I plan on weaning around that time, but don't want to offer Cow Milk and know that the fat, protein content is important. Any suggestions.

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So What Happened?

Thank you to everyone who responded. Your thoughts are much appreciated. Many of your suggestions were what I was thinking and some had some new ideas for me to try. I am going to talk to our pediatrician and review some of our ideas. I will let you know when the time is right for the switch from mama milk to other milk.

Thanks again! Blessings and happy energy to all you mamas! C.

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D.G.

answers from Minneapolis on

Hi C.,

I''m a Mom of a yr old and a 1 yr old. Both of my girls were lactose intolerant as babies. My 4 yr old outgrew it at 2.5 yrs old, but my 1 yr old is still lactose intolerant. I took her off of Soy Formula at 1 yr and put her on milk. I buy the Dean's Lactose Free milk. It's real milk, but just has an agent in it to make it digestable for those people who are lactose intolerant.

Hope that helps you.

~D.

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K.R.

answers from Madison on

my daughter has had a problem with lactose since she was tiny. for a long time we used 8th continent soy milk. according to our doctor, it has all the same vitamins that can be found in the cow milk.

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T.

answers from Minneapolis on

There are goat and sheep's milks available at local co-ops and natural food stores. Sometimes it is hard to find them in the full-fat form. If you're looking for non-animal alternatives there are also soy, rice and nut (almond, hazelnut, etc) milks available too. Soy can be an alergen and soy milk is generally heavily processed but they do come fortified. These are also availbale at local food co-ops and natural food stores. Check the labels on a few to see if they have the nutrient profile you're looking for.

Neither of my kids are very big milk drinkers, 3 and 18 months. They do eat yogurt, keifer and cheese but they probably fall below the conventional standard for dairy intake. They're both growing and seem to be fine, I just make sure to offer them a variety of whole and natural foods.

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B.S.

answers from Madison on

I give both of my daughters rice milk. They are 5yrs, and 1yr. My five yr old has developed just fine. I have just recently weened my one yr old. She is growing just fine too. If you are planning on giving other dairy, then that is a good way for your one yr old to get that protein, and fat.

B. S

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J.

answers from Milwaukee on

CURIOUS WHY DAIRY FREE? I WAS TOLD THAT GOATS MILK IS THE CLOSEST TO BREAST MILK. AND THAT SO MANY PRODUCTS ARE OVER-SOYED THAT CHILDREN ARE RESULTING IN DIGESTIVE ISSUES. SO WE DID GOATS MILK UNTIL WE FOUND A GREAT RAW & ORGANIC FARM IN OUR AREA. NOTHING LIKE IT!

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J.R.

answers from Minneapolis on

My daughter was allergic to milk protein so she was on soy formula. When she turned 1 she didn't like cows milk even though she had gotten through the protein problem. I just bought her Silk soy milk and she loved it. Every now and then I'd let her finish off my skim milk so she would learn the taste and when she turned 2 we switched her to skim and it was just fine for her.
The nice thing about Silk is that while it is refrigerated it lasts a long time so you can buy a quite a few at a time.
Good luck,
J.

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P.K.

answers from Minneapolis on

I nursed my daughter until she was 11 mo's and would have longer had she not weaned herself. I think if you can go longer with breast milk, that's so much more beneficial than cow milk. I know you said you wanted to be normal again and I understand how that feels, but if you are looking for a cow milk substitute, there aren't many other choices out there. You might have to choose your battles. I believe the reason they go to whole milk at a year, is the allergic issue lessons at around a year old. But, I'd go breast as long as you can if you're looking at avoiding dairy. Nothing is better than breast milk. Some may scoff at the issue of how LONG you might be breastfeeding, but I believe it's more the nursing issue, not the breask milk. You won't find anyone that doesn't believe that breast milk is best and there is no substitute. You could try pumping. I've heard that some moms go to a soy substitute during a transition because you can buy the vanilla flavor which is sweet like breast milk, but lacks the whole fats that are needed.

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A.A.

answers from Minneapolis on

My 18 mo son has a dairy allergy. He drinks soy milk. His pediatircian recommended adding other fats to his diet like flax seed oil or olive oil to different foods. Are you willing to give your child cheese and yogurt? There are other ways to get protein and fat in their diet that does not include cow milk. My ds has certainly not suffered. He is in the 95th percentile for height and weight.

A.

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L.

answers from Minneapolis on

I read all the other replies and I think everything was covered. Just wanted to add that if you want to completely avoid dairy, you would need to do more than just not drink cow's milk. There is butter and whey and lactic acid and casein and more that are derived from cow's milk. Dairy is added to a lot of processed foods. I have a 2.5 yr. who has multiple food allergies including dairy and soy. I am tandem nursing my older daughter and my 1 month old. My older daughter is nursing 1-2x a day so I am off of the foods that she is allergic too also so that the proteins will not pass through into my breastmilk. She does fine on rice milk which is widely available. We've tried potato based milk but it is harder to find. The nut milks are no good for us since she is allergic to nuts. You can get protein and fat from lots of other foods so I think the important thing is to try to have a balanced and healthy diet.

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N.H.

answers from Minneapolis on

Hi C.-
you could use goats milk. It's actually healthier for us than cows milk. Also lots of people who are lactose intolerant or who avoid dairy can drink raw milk and handle it just fine.
You could give your 1 year old rice or almond milk, which has very little fat and make sure he/she is getting adequate oils in the diet: coconut oils, flax oil, walnut oil, avocados, almond butter, cashew butter, etc.
Hope that helps-
Nichi
myhealthybeginning.com

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J.R.

answers from Madison on

Hi C.,

I know there are other alternatives like rice and potato milk. I'm not sure on the fat content though. A great resource is C's Specialty Foods on Commerce Drive (near the Westside Princeton Club). Char is the owner - give her a call or stop by - ###-###-####.

Good luck,

J.

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L.

answers from Minneapolis on

My son is off dairy and we use Vances Dairy Free. You have to order it from Vance's Foods online. It comes in a powder and in regular and chocolate. I like it because it is potato based (doesn't have the fat content that regular milk does)and is suplemented with calcium, protien and D. Like some people who react to dairy -- our son reacted to soy -- that's pretty common, plus I didn't want to give him large quantities of soy as it's a plant estrogen and there are some studie out there questioning that for developing boys. The other great thing is you make it as you need it! Not much waste which is great!
I have a lot of firends who use it for kids at all ages.
L.

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R.S.

answers from Milwaukee on

C., everyone has different reasons for not wanting cow milk without knowing what yours are, I have the following suggestions: goat milk is recommended as a substitute, has all the same animal milk protein/fat needs, but less lactose so is easier to digest/less allergenic; soy, almond, or rice follow. Personally, I don't like the taste of soy milk, but some people don't mind and its easier to get kids to like something than to change an adult palette. Almond and rice 'milk's are generally fortified with all the appropriate vitamins, equivalent to cow milk. Almond milk has a (very) little more protein than rice. Personally, I prefer rice, but others prefer almond. Both are slightly sweet in the original flavor so buying the vanilla is not really necessary. Recommend brand Almond Breeze and Soy/Rice Dream.

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E.L.

answers from Milwaukee on

There are lots of alternitives. My 1 year old has a milk allergy and can't have any milk products. The fortified Soy milk is great. Any body under the age of 5 can not have rice milk so just be aware of that. If you live near an "out post" or other whole foods store they carry a lot of dariy free products. My son really likes the soy- sour cream and ice cream. If your son needs to be completely dairy free, then watch the kind of "butter" spread you use because most of it has dairy in it. all beef franks are dairy free, but other hot dogs may containe dairy products. I hope this helps!

E.

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S.N.

answers from Minneapolis on

I used to give my son a mixture of soymilk and whole milk. So you could try soy milk. Our favorite brand is 8th Continent. You may also want to try Goat's milk. Below is a link with more info.
Best Wishes!

ttp://askdrsears.com/html/3/t032400.asp

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G.

answers from Minneapolis on

My son just turned 1 yr old and has a dairy allergy. Silk makes a soy milk for kids that is very nutritious and has the full fat content like whole cow's milk. My son loves this milk. I buy it at SuperTarget.

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