What is Whole Milk

What is whole milk? Whole milk is cow milk that contains 3.5 to 3.7% fat. Compare this to low-fat milk, which is typically either 1% or 2% fat. The nutritional differences between the types of milk are as follows:

  • Low-fat milk (1%): 88 to 105 calories, 0.4 to 2.4 grams fat
  • Low-fat milk (2%): 125 calories, 4.7 grams fat
  • Whole milk (3.7%): 155 to 160 calories, 9 grams fat


What percent milk is best for children? Of course, infants do best with breast milk. Most pediatricians suggest feeding children breast milk, or formula if breast milk is unavailable, for the first twelve months. Many parents continue breast feeding well into the toddler years, and weaning is largely a personal decision. Regardless of when you wean, children are typically ready for cow milk after twelve months.

Pediatricians usually agree that there is no need to limit the fat intake of toddlers. A toddler may seem chubby, but in most cases has what moms call "milk fat," which he loses when he begins walking and running.

Always seek a physician's advice before starting your child on milk. Whole milk is recommended for growing children until weight or other factors indicate that a switch ito low fat milk is in order. A toddler needs the extra calories from whole milk in most cases.

The calcium that comes from whole milk is also essential. A growing child is building bone at an amazing speed. Lacking this vital nutrient, a child may become undernourished and his bones brittle. He may fail to grow properly and his body show signs of stress.

Always seek a pediatrician's approval before feeding a child whole cow milk. In some cases, parents decide to switch to low fat milk because they believe that their child is overweight or gaining weight too quickly. Always seek a pediatrician's approval before making this switch. Your child may not enjoy the different taste of the milk at first, but should adjust after a few days.

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