Plant-based milks shouldn’t be main beverage for young kids: experts

Experts warn that drinking too much of the plant-based beverages can displace hunger and cause children to eat less

Canada’s dietitians and pediatricians are discouraging parents from relying on plant-based drinks — such as rice, coconut and almond milks — as the main beverage for babies and young kids.

Dr. Catherine Pound of the Canadian Paediatric Society says some plant-based beverages are not fortified with any minerals or vitamins and often contain sugar as the second ingredient after water.

Kids aged two to eight need 13 to 19 grams of protein per day, which can be met with two cups of cow milk or two cups of fortified soy beverage.

Meanwhile, almond, coconut or rice drinks contain little to no protein and would require kids to also eat two child-sized servings of meat or two half-cup servings of lentils.

Almond drinks only contain about four almonds per cup.

The experts warn that drinking too much of the plant-based beverages can displace hunger and cause children to eat less food.

“The challenge for parents is conflicting messages. They read that these drinks are considered ‘healthier’ on social media or hear misinformation about cow milk or fortified soy beverage,” Becky Blair of Dietitians of Canada said Wednesday in a release.

If possible, infants should be exclusively breastfed for the first six months, and continued for up to two years or longer with appropriate complementary feeding. Otherwise, babies can drink formula or pasteurized human milk from screened donors.

Cow milk is not recommended before nine to 12 months of age. Full fat homogenized cow milk is then recommended for kids until age two.

In the case of allergies or other concerns, Pound says parents should speak with a dietitian.

The Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Gov’t of Alberta confirms 29 new COVID-19 cases

Of the total 6,955 confirmed cases, 652 are active

Town of Blackfalds moving forward with the arena and library expansion

Council voted 4 to 3 to approve the final and guaranteed maximum price of the $24.6 million

Cilantro and Chive ‘Chicken Parmesan Burger’ supports Lacombe Food Bank

Cilantro and Chive owner Rieley Kay was thrilled to hand over a cheque

2020 Lacombe property tax notices being mailed out

Property taxes are due and payable without penalty if recieved at City Hall by Dec. 31, 2020.

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The Lacombe Express covers the stories that matter to you and to our community

Canada’s vulnerable to money laundering on par with similar countries: expert

Canada’s vulnerable to money laundering on par with similar countries: expert

Toronto stock market dips on weakness in the energy and financials sectors

Toronto stock market dips on weakness in the energy and financials sectors

Kelowna, B.C., man charged with murder in Alberta killing

A second man is also wanted in connection with the first degree murder of Cody Michaloski

PHOTOS: Loved ones reunite at an oasis on closed U.S.-Canada border

Officials closed the park in mid-March over coronavirus concerns

Trump preparing order targeting social media protections

“This will be a Big Day for Social Media and FAIRNESS!”

USMCA poised for star turn in trade spotlight as White House sours on China

Pandemic accelerates U.S. efforts to pull back from China

Legal experts weigh in on Meng Wanzhou decision from B.C. Supreme Court

The court will now hear arguments about whether Meng’s arrest was unlawful

Most Read