Whole Milk, 2%, or Skim?
At 12 months, your doctor will recommend introducing cow’s milk. In certain instances, such as your baby refusing breastmilk or formula, your doctor may recommend introducing as early as 9 months. You should start your child on whole milk. Full fat milk is important for the development of your baby’s brain. You should not be giving your baby 2% or skim milk at this time. After two years of age, you can transition to 2% milk, as this percentage of fat is ideal for development.
If your baby has digestive issues when starting milk, it could mean several things. One common concern is lactose intolerance. In this instance, changing your baby to a lactose free cow’s milk may be beneficial. If your baby is not lactose intolerant, your doctor may recommend trying A2 milk. Nowadays, milk contains A1 and A2 proteins. A2 was the original protein found in milk but overtime a genetic variance in cows caused the prevalence of A1 protein. A2 milk is a special milk that comes from cows that only produce the A2 protein. It has been shown that the A2 protein is easier to digest.
For more about A2 milk click on the link.
Only in special situations, such as a dairy allergy, will your doctor recommend alternative milks. Alternative milks such as almond milk, coconut milk, etc., lack the nutritional profile that your baby needs. For example, some of these milks lack the proper amount of protein, vitamins, and minerals. Meeting your child’s nutritional requirements is vital for their growth and development. If your baby cannot have cow’s milk your doctor will have recommendations specific to your child.