Market Overview

One Out of Two Kids is Missing Out on Key Nutrients Critical for Their Health


Experts recommend milk as the top food source for these important
nutrients, especially as kids head back to school

Amid the chaos of getting kids out the door in the morning and taming
the hangry monsters that get off the bus in the afternoon, parents may
be overlooking a critical part of setting their kids up for success
during the school year: a nutrient-rich diet. One out of two kids ages 9
and up are not getting enough calcium, vitamin D and potassium –
nutrients they need to grow, learn and play. And, most kids younger than
nine are falling short on vitamin D and potassium.

Milk is the top food source for calcium, vitamin D and potassium, which
is why experts, including pediatricians, recommend real dairy milk as
part of kids' diets to ensure they have nutrients they need to be set up
for success.

"As a mom, I know the chaotic reality that going back-to-school brings,
but as a doctor, I know the most important thing I can do for my kids is
make sure they're eating and drinking the right things each day," said
Dr. Tanya Altmann, pediatrician, best-selling author and nationally
recognized parenting expert. "As parents, we don't always know what our
kids are eating and drinking once we send them out the door, which makes
getting in a nutritious snack more important than ever. When my kids
come home from school tired and hungry, I pour a glass of milk with
their snack. It's my secret weapon to helping them get nutrients they
may have otherwise missed."

Why Experts Recommend Milk

Experts recommend that kids 4-8 should get 2½ servings of milk or milk
products each day and kids 9 and up should be getting 3 servings each
day. But by the time kids are nine, three out of four are falling short
on the recommended amount of milk and milk products. In fact, kids ages
nine and up average a little more than one 8-ounce serving of milk per
day. 1

Three of the nutrients in milk – calcium, vitamin D and potassium – are
so important for kids' growth and development that the Dietary
Guidelines for Americans
identified them as nutrients of public
health concern because many Americans, including school-aged kids, are
not consuming enough.2 Missing these important nutrients
during critical growing years could have serious long-term implications,
including a child not reaching their full height potential, an increase
in stress fractures during adolescence, and a greater chance of
osteoporosis as an adult.3, 4, 5, 6

Experts also agree that milk remains a great way for kids to get their
bone-building nutrients – even more so than non-dairy milks fortified
with calcium, which don't have the same nutritional value as real milk.7
Only real dairy milk offers a full array of bone-building nutrients –
calcium, vitamin D, potassium, protein and phosphorus – for only about
25 cents a glass.

Substituting milk with non-dairy calcium sources like fortified soy milk
and leafy greens can lead to gaps in other key nutrients like protein,
vitamin D, phosphorus, riboflavin, potassium, magnesium, vitamin A and
vitamin B12.8

Tame the Hangry

The good news is that serving milk isn't a food battle moms have to
fight. Kids love milk, in fact 41 percent of kids would drink more milk.

When kids come home from school, they can seem like hangry monsters,
looking for the closest snack to keep their hunger at bay. By pouring a
glass of milk alongside afternoon snacks, moms can feel good knowing
their kids are getting nutrients they need.

Back to School Confessions

To kick off the new school year, the Milk Processor Education Program
(MilkPEP) is encouraging moms to share their own back to school-related
confessions for the chance to win a school year's supply of milk for
their family. To enter, parents can post their confessions to Instagram
or Twitter, tagging @MilkLife and using #BackToSchool and #contest in
the caption.

The contest runs from August 10 – September 30, 2018 and is open to
parents or legal guardians of grade school-aged kids who are residents
of the fifty (50) United States or the District of Columbia and are at
least 18 years or older. For full rules, visit

For more on the nutritional reality kids today are facing and tips for
taming after-school hunger, visit

About MilkPEP

MilkPEP, Washington, D.C., is funded by the nation's milk companies, who
are committed to educating consumers about the many nutritious benefits
of milk and ensuring all children have access to fresh, wholesome milk.
The MilkPEP Board runs marketing programs, including Milk Life, a
multi-faceted campaign highlighting the important role milk plays in
helping families reach their full potential, Milk It! a campaign for
kids built around their love of milk, and Built with Chocolate Milk,
which inspires athletes to perform at their best and recover with lowfat
chocolate milk. For more information, go to

1 National Dairy Council. NHANES 2011-2014. Data Source:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Health
Statistics, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey Data.
Hyattsville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

2 U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of
Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015. 8th
Edition, 2015.

3 Wiley AS. Does milk make children grow? Relationships
between milk consumption and height in NHANES 1999-2002. American
Journal of Human Biology
. 2005;17:425-441.

4 Ruffing JA, et al. Determinants of bone mass and bone size
in a large cohort of physically active young adult men. Nutrition &
. 2006;3:14.

5 Rockell JE, Williams SM, Taylor RW, Grant AM, Jones IE,
Goulding A. Two-year changes in bone and body composition in young
children with a history of prolonged milk avoidance. Osteoporosis
. 2004;16:1016-1023.

6 Goulding A, Rockell JE, Black RE, Grant AM, Jones IE,
Williams SM. Children who avoid drinking cow's milk are at increased
risk for prepubertal bone fractures. Journal of the American Dietetic
. 2004;104:250-253.

7 Golden NH, Abrams SAl. Optimizing Bone Health in Children
and Adolescents. Pediatrics. 2014;134:e1229-e1243.

8 Fulgoni VL, Keast DR, Auestad N, Quann EE. Nutrients from
dairy foods are difficult to replace in diets of Americans: food pattern
modeling and an analysis of the National Health and Nutrition
Examination Survey 2003-2006. Nutrition Research. 2011;31:759-765.

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