Why I Won’t Give My Son Cow’s Milk
As my son was approaching his 1st year, I could hardly believe how quickly time had past. My little chubby cherub was no longer a baby. He was approaching Toddlerhood. He could eat the big kids snacks. He could get fitted for his first shoes and of course he no longer needed breastmilk or formula. I was so excited to start this new journey. However when our health visitor strongly advised that we continue to give him 2 of bottles of full fat cows milk a day. My stomach turned. I didn’t want to give him cow’s milk and here is why
I am usually one to follow the advice of a health professional but this advice did not sit well with me. I hate cow’s milk. No scrap that. I absolutely love it, I could drink glass after glass when I was younger. Don’t even mention the word cheese to me. Having lived in France for 8 years cheese had become a part of my existence. No I love the taste of cows milk and all things made from cows milk, but its affects on the body, I hate.
Strong bones…or not
More and more health professionals are now advising against cow’s milk but why? With more research being conducted on the subject, new information about the real benefits of dairy have come to light. Previously praised for its bone enhancing abilities. Scientists now claim that it actually does the opposite. Countries with the lowest dairy consumption are those with the lowest rates of osteoporosis. How can this be? If dairy is full of bone fortifying calcium and minerals then how is it that the countries that consume the biggest amount of dairy and milk products have the highest rate of osteoporosis and lactose intolerance?
A study done on women in Sweden found that those who consumed more than 3 glasses of milk a day doubled their mortality rate. The thing is that cows milk does contain a lot of calcium and vitamins. However our fragile little human digestive systems are just not able to process it like calves can. And that is where the problem lies. Cows milk is made for calves who have four digestive compartments in their stomachs. When humans drink it, it puts a massive strain on our digestive system. Causing inflammation which can lead to asthma, allergies and digestive issues such as IBS and even autoimmune diseases.
Better For Your Gut Without It
So why am I against dairy? As much as I love cheese, cream and yogurt, I have experienced a change in my health and digestion when I decided to cut it out. Once I stopped dairy my usually slow digestive system improved and general state of health felt a lot better because of it. My brothers who have suffered from severe eczema their whole lives have experienced significant improvements since cutting dairy. With them now being able to reduce their use of steroid creams and treatments.
So what do I do?
Considering all of the above, the idea of feeding my son 2 bottles of cows milk a day leaves a pit in my stomach. Could I be opening him up to digestive issues and allergies by giving him cows milk? If he no longer needs breastmilk, and I don’t want to feed him cows milk then what do I give him?
There are a lot of milk replacements out there, but which one is better for my son? In my household, we are nut milk drinkers. I drink almond milk and my partner drinks hazelnut. Though these are better than cows milk in my opinion, store bought nut milks are not as nutritious as homemade nut milk. Some brands only have 2% of nuts in their ingredients! Along with another array of ingredients I cannot pronounce. So do we ditch milk all together? Or do i start squeezing almonds to get the purest form of milk possible for my tot?
Got Goat’s Milk
With a bit of research i quickly discovered that Goat’s milk is a healthier alternative to Cow’s. Goats milk is easier to digest. It has less curd and contains less lactose. With fewer allergic proteins in the milk it does not cause as much inflammation in the gut like cows milk does and is full of minerals and vitamins. It also contains a higher amount of probiotics, which feed the good bacteria in your gut thus promoting a healthy digestive system.
My son loves it and while he is still young and growing. I will continue to use goats milk for his digestive system.
What are your thoughts?
I’m so glad I come across this. My little girl is only 3 months but this is something I am already thinking about. I feed her formula right now but am more and more considering not giving her cow’s milk when she is ready for a change. I have dairy but very rarely actual milk. I eat cheese and yoghurts but tend to lean towards almond milk or Soy for coffee and cereal. I think most people believe that it is a necessity but why would I give my child a drink I would rather not have myself because of the effects it has on my body?
Hi Robyn Louise. I know, I totally agree. I too was in the same situation as health visitors push cows milk but I was just not comfortable. What do you think you will do? So far Goats milk works for us, my mother in law gave him cows once and he had an upset tummy after which only confirmed my beliefs about it. Later down the tract i think i will give him almond milk . x
Rachel | A Life With A Little
Can I ask what goats milk tastes like? I’ve been seriously considering not going back to cow milk. My son breastfeeds still at almost ten months old, and he has a dairy protein intolerance. So for the last almost 7 months we’ve been dairy free. I’ve been very strict about reading labels and making sure I don’t eat any dairy. So I’m not sure I really want to reintroduce him to dairy at ten months like my son’s GI doctor wants us to. I’m really considering giving him almond or coconut milk (our preferences in my household), but I’ve never tried goats milk before and am not quite sure what forms it comes in commercially besides the dried milk. Any tips and advice would be great! Thank you!
Hey Rachel. I will be honest goats milk is an acquired taste for me personally though my son loves it and gobbles it up no problem. I buy it from the supermarket here is the U.K. in cartons just like cows milk. My advice would be to do what is best for you and what you feel in your gut. I personally didn’t feel right giving my son goats milk when I didn’t want to drink it myself despite my health visitor pushing it. He is a very healthy baby and is not missing cows milk. He doesnt need it and I will eventually wean him off milk and go but milk when he is a bit older. I hope that helps xx
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Hi Kylie, thanks for this. My son Quinton is a year now and HV has also told me to give cows milk. I occasionally mixed Fed with breast with goats formula in the past and I don’t like cows milk for myself. What is your view on cheese and yoghurt though? Have you been giving your child that? Yoghurt I can give coconut or goats. But what about cheese, what cheese are you giving? Thanks in advance
Hi Laura, Thanks for your comment. I don’t give my son cheese at all. He snacks on other things. As for yogurt I buy plain coconut milk yogurt and mix it with honey or fruit purées. He really loves it. Hope that helps 🙂
That sounds good. So at 12 months u started goats milk? How did you wean from breastfeeding and what was the transition like? There’s a local goat farm here I can get goats milk from. How many oz or mls of goats milk do you give per day and when in the day? Also what kind of cup or bottle do you give the milk from? My baby drinks from the Munchkin Miracle cup already (just water). And I know we are supposed to get rid of the baby bottle by 12 months. Thanks in advanced.
Yes we started giving Gabriel goats milk from 1. He is now 3 and still drinks it. I give him a full cup in the morning and evening and we use the anyway up cow cup. (ironic yes I know 😂) x
Oh also does that mean your baby doesn’t have any dairy products like cheese and yoghurt made from cows milk? I wasn’t clear on this.
And how long does a baby need to drink goats milk for? Until 2 or 5 years old?