How Much Milk Should My 1-Year-Old Drink?
A few weeks ago, my father-in-law raised a concern. He felt that Baby Dozer was drinking too little milk. “When K was Baby Dozer’s age, she used to take 6 - 7 ounces of milk per feed!”
On the other hand, my mother exclaimed to me. “Baby Dozer is like a bottomless pit! He seems to be eating non-stop!” He eats even more than L!
Both K and L are Baby Dozer’s cousins, aged 3 and 4 respectively. Baby Dozer is 14 months old. All my research thus far had told me that Baby Dozer’s intake was sufficient but as mothers, comparisons between babies are always a good checkpoint and should not be ignored.
So, how much milk really should Baby Dozer be taking?
Well, here are some important information you should know first before deciding how much milk to give your 1-year-old:
1. After 1 year old, your baby will need less milk because he’ll get most of his calories from solid foods
The American Academy of Pediatrics states that 1-year-olds should be consuming about 1,000 calories of solid foods each day. Loosely translated into food terms, your little one needs to eat solid foods for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks in between.
2. Too much milk can lead to reduced intake of solid foods, which could potentially lead to iron deficiency
The iron deficiency topic is a very real topic which you should take heed of, and not because this crazy mum is “overthinking things”. Children and teenagers need a lot of iron to support their growth, and 1-year-old babies are at higher risk of iron deficiency because of their especially rapid rate of growth. If a baby drinks too much milk, this will cause him / her to become full and reject solid foods, which are a source of iron.
3. Try to let picky toddlers nibble throughout the day
Parents of picky toddlers may find it especially difficult to get their children to eat solids hence may tend to fall back on milk to keep their toddlers full. Unfortunately, as mentioned in point 2 above, too much milk can possibly lead to iron deficiency, hence, an alternative strategy would be to make small amounts of food available to your toddler throughout the day to encourage him / her to nibble on solids. Make sure these foods are rich in iron. Examples of iron-rich foods would be fish, beans and dark leafy vegetables.
In summary, the recommended amount of milk for a 1-year-old is 16 - 24 ounces. If you’re thinking, “Wait a minute…isn’t that too little?”, please refer to points 1 to 3 above. :)
As for Baby Dozer, I can now heave a sigh of relief because he is taking between 16 to 20 ounces of breastmilk a day and eats hearty meals of breakfast, lunch and dinner with snacks in between! I will however need to ensure his foods are rich in iron. In fact, this is a topic which I’ll be writing about soon!
Thanks for reading and have a good week!