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Semi-skimmed Or Whole Milk?


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I just wondered what type of milk everyone provides for their preschool - we currently provide whole milk, but our PDW has recommended we change to semi-skimmed as the children are probably getting enough fat in the rest of their diet.

Carolyn

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We provide whole milk too.... i remember when i first started getting funding from the WFRU, they would only fund for WHOLE milk, not sure if that is still the case??

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I thought it was recommended that children at least up to the age of five should have full fat milk. The fat provides extra energy that small children require. Maybe it would be best to check with the health visitor.

 

regards

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You shouldn't give skimmed milk to children under five nor semi skimmed to those under two. If a child is eating well then semi skimmed is fine for 2-5 year olds. Having said that, we provide whole milk - are you going to vet every family to see if their child is eating well at home? :o

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Whole milk here too! The other side of the argument is what if they are not getting enough fat in their diet? And they do need those fats which milk supplies. Not all children have the diet we would want and nursery/pre-school/school is one way of ensuring they do.

Linda

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Interesting that we all give whole milk - in our setting we are reviewing all our policies (as part of accreditation) and have been looking at the latest PLA sample policy on food and drink which states that "For children who drink milk, we provide Semi skimmed and pasteurised milk". Does anyone out there give semi-skimmed? It seems to be the latest advice.

 

Good idea to ask the health visitor.

Carolyn

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Guest LucyQ

If we had a number of children who were overweight we might consider changing, however, we don't have any children with a weight problem so will be staying with whole milk even if the PLA think otherwise.

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After many years of me pushing (as parent then as staff) my setting has now stopped offering orange squash as an alternative to milk or water.

 

Some qualms from parents - but common sense prevails: a thirsty child will drink anything!

 

Whole milk vs semi-skimmed? I'd always go for whole milk for children up to 5. One of the "old school" here.

 

Interestingly, I have a family of milk-drinkers (aged 18, 14, 11; all girls). The elder two have preferred semi-skimmed since about the age of 6/7. In contrast, the youngest still prefers whole milk (even though she doesn't get it at home).

 

My gut opinion is that younger (i.e. up to 5) milk-drinkers prefer full cream milk.

 

You've all got me thinking here. I'm going to do a "tasting test" at pre-school. Whole vs semi-skimmed. Maths activity - plot results graphically.

 

If a majority of children prefer one, and nutrition is not a consideration (I'll look into this, too), then it could influence what happens here.

 

I'll let you know the results.

 

 

Diane

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Hi all

I have just found the guidelines we have received from Stockport Primary Care Trust regarding snacks and milk. They recommend that full fat milk is the most nutritious option for a snack time drink. At home over 2's can have semi-skimmed milk but only if they are good eaters.

The foof standards agency does state in one of their leaflets that semi-skimmed is fine for 2+ but again if they are eating well and getting plenty of calories and nutrients from a varied diet.

I am going to stick with whole milk as I can't assume they are getting a balanced diet at home-other than asking parents which some may find too intrusive.

Linda

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We used to offer semi- skimmed because I thought it was better for them, then we had a new milkman who left full fat, we noticed that the children were asking for more milk and more children were drinking it.

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Another interesting topic!

 

We give whole milk, again because of the under 5s 'rule'. Interestingly, in our family our children drink full fat (but only UHT), my doh has semi-skimmed (fresh) and I have skimmed (UHT).

 

Maz

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Another interesting topic!

 

We give whole milk, again because of the under 5s 'rule'.  Interestingly, in our family our children drink full fat (but only UHT), my doh has semi-skimmed (fresh) and I have skimmed (UHT).

 

Maz

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We give whole milk as thought children under 5 needed all the necessary vitamins and calcium ?but it has got me thinking about skimmed milk.In a area where all the children have good balanced meals maybe skimmed milk

should be drunk??? If the children do not like milk water is offered.

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I feel really strongly about this. I don't feel we can assume that parents are giving a balanced diet-and this is not thinking badly about parents. But I know some of my children don't have breakfast-they tell us when we talk about what we have for breakfast. So I feel that it is better to give the children the best that we can and know that they are ALL getting the best.

My group is in a fairly affluent area and I know that some of the children do not have a healthy diet by talking with them.

As practitioners we have to give the best we possibly can.

Linda

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Regarding calcium, I think I read somewhere that pint for pint skimmed milk has more calcium in it than whole milk - something about the fact that because the fat has been taken away, the volume is made up of more milk - and therefore more calcium.

 

You can tell I'm not a scientist, can't you?

 

Maz

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But don't they need the fat content too?

Linda

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Oh, yes, Linda: we only give full fat milk. I agree with you: we can't assume that children have a good, balanced diet and I strongly believe that the snacks and drinks we supply our children should be as healthy as we can possibly make them.

 

Having said that we usually give them white bread for toast, simply because when we offer brown they complain!

 

Maz

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I thought that too Linda, but my PDW said that she felt that the nutrients in semi-skimmed were higher without the fat (like Maz said) and those who have poor home diet are likely to be eating high-fat foods at home and don't need the fat anyway. So she felt semi-skimmed is the best for the children.

We are still using whole milk in our setting, however until I am completely convinced by the argument the other way.

Carolyn

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I think what we are losing sight of here is "good fats" and "bad fats". And the fats that are supplied in milk are good and those that we think our children may be having are not so good.

As for white bread and brown or whole meal bread-there is more calcium in white bread than brown and therefore is better for young children. And also young children cannot absorb fibre as well as older children and adults-their stomachs cannot process it. So white bread is better than brown or wholemeal.

Linda

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I thought it was recommended that under 5's had full fat milk. On a practical note, our children have milk in cartons, (approx 1/3 of a pint).Is it possible to get semi skimmed milk in cartons like this?

Barb

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Linda, I'm with you on the 'good-fats-bad-fats' thing. And thanks for the info on bread - I'll be sure to pass that on!

 

Maz

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