My 18 month old son doesnt like milk. He barely drink about 100-150 ml per day and some days its even lessor. I have tried cheese, paneer (he hates it), butter, yogurt, lassi and other milk products but in vain! There are times he has had lassi or yogurt but its a rare thing. I would like to know if this could affect his health as I was told by the pediatrician that children need about 500ml of dairy products a day, but my son is no where close to that! I hope that he develops a taste for milk with time.. Thank you.

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Updated on Jul 15, 2013

nutrition Corner

Answer:

Hi Anurima,

Firstly, let me make you feel better by stating that you’re not alone in this plight. It’s a very common problem faced by a very big number of parents. Many babies of this age group go through these phases of totally refusing dairy. The key is patience and creativity. Try following these tips to ease out your distress as a mother:

1) Try giving him a sippy cup with milk to try sipping on his own. This has worked with many kids as they love the control.
2) Try adding full-fat milk, fresh cream, paneer and cheese to as many foods as you can. For instance- scrambled egg with milk & cheese; homemade custard with milk; fruit yogurt with thick curd; fruit smoothie; fruit or chocolate milkshake; kheer in full-fat milk & fresh cream; oatmeal with milk; cheesy whole-wheat pasta; homemade ice cream with full-fat milk; milk in pancakes; milk in French toast; milk in spinach; mashed potato with cheese; cheese sandwich; add grated cheese to soups/dals/khichdi, cheese balls, etc.
3) Try feeding him non-dairy good sources of protein, calcium & magnesium to make up for these nutrients. These are: eggs, fish like sardines & salmon, soya milk, tofu, dried beans like kabuli chana/lobia/black chana/rajma/dried peas, dals and other lentils, vegetables like fresh beans/broccoli/spinach/okra/squash/watercress, peanut butter (little initially to rule out allergy), banana, orange juice fortified with calcium, dried fruits like figs/raisins/prunes.
4) Be creative with the way you feed dairy by cooking in different ways; adding colours to the platter you offer; adding fun shapes to the solids; make stories around food (eg. Broccoli with cheese could be a tree covered with snow).
5) If most things don’t work, try administering Pediasure for a while to make up for protein & calcium deficient diet. Also, Give calcium suppliments.

NOTE: Start any supplements ONLY after consulting your child’s pediatrician.

Just don’t give up as it is just a phase of refusal. All the kids outgrow this stage in due time. All the best!

Regards,
Tanuja

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