Parenting

Cow Milk vs Buffalo Milk, Which Is Better for Kids?

If you are debating cow milk vs buffalo milk and looking to introduce cow milk or buffalo milk to your child or wondering why babies should not be given cow milk till one year of age, you will find all your answers in this post.

Why Cow Milk is not given to Babies under One year old?

Cow Milk is not given to babies under one year old because of a variety of reasons.

Firstly, cow milk contains a high level of sodium, potassium, and protein which is not suitable for a baby’s digestive system. Their digestive system is underdeveloped and such high levels of sodium, potassium, and protein may be harmful to their kidneys.

Secondly, cow milk contains more casein than human milk. Casein is whey protein ratio.  Casein is difficult to digest by the babies and may lead to constipation or diarrhea in them.

Thirdly, cow milk does not contain vitamin E, essential fatty acids, linoleic acid, and iron. Therefore, babies who are fed on cow’s milk are exposed to the risk of iron deficiency.

So, to be on the safer side it is best to offer breast milk or formula as recommended by the pediatrician until the baby turns a year old, and then gradually cow milk or buffalo milk can be introduced.

When to Introduce Cow Milk to Your Child?

The best time to introduce cow milk to your baby is after he/she turns one.

Children under 2 years of age should be given full fat/full cream milk as they need higher fat and caloric intake for growth and development.

After 2 years, depending on the child’s appetite, diet and weight you can introduce toned milk.

Double-toned milk is not appropriate for children under 5 years of age due to its low calorific value and nutrient profile.

Cow Milk vs Buffalo Milk

Both kinds of milk have their positives and negatives. In Layman’s terms, cow milk is light, and buffalo milk is considered to be heavy for digestion. If you are wondering what is the logic behind milk being heavy or light? Here’s the answer. The below table gives a comparison of cow milk and buffalo milk 1.

Cow milk vs buffalo milk
Cow milk vs Buffalo milk

Fat Content

Cow milk has a low-fat percentage as compared to buffalo milk. That is why cow milk has a thin consistency. Buffalo milk, on the other hand, has a higher fat content and is thicker in its consistency. Cow milk has 3-4 percent fat, whereas buffalo milk has about 7-8 percent fat. For this reason, cow milk is recommended over buffalo milk for 1-year-olds as the latter takes longer to absorb and digest.

Protein Content

As compared to cow milk, buffalo milk has approximately 11 percent higher protein content than cow milk. Just like fats, proteins are also difficult for babies to digest. This is an additional reason why cow milk is a better option for your 1-year-old.

Water Content

Cow milk contains fewer milk solids as compared to buffalo milk. This property of cow milk makes it helpful for the hydration of the body. Therefore cow’s milk is better for 1-year-olds as compared to buffalo milk.

Cholesterol Content

The amount of cholesterol is also different in both forms of milk. Buffalo milk contains a low level of cholesterol, which makes it an ideal choice for people suffering from diseases such as PCOD, hypertension, kidney problems, and obesity.

Calcium

Buffalo milk has a higher content of calcium as compared to cow milk.

Bottom Line

As a mother, you may try both in small amounts to see which one is best suited to your child. Both forms of milk are nutritious and have their own health benefits. So, what to consume depends on your preference. I haven’t found a single research paper that says buffalo milk is not good for kids or cow milk is better as compared to buffalo milk.

Buffalo milk may be preferred as it is richer in fat content, protein, calcium, and calorific value, making it more beneficial than cow milk. However, it could be difficult for babies to digest it. Cow milk is easier to digest and keeps the baby more hydrated.

Personal Opinion

As for choosing between cow milk or buffalo milk, which is better for kids, cow’s milk is a better way to start, as buffalo milk is rich in fat and difficult to digest. You may later introduce buffalo milk to your child.

How To Give Buffalo Milk To Your Toddler?

If you want to feed your child buffalo milk, be sure to give it to him/her in a small quantity and not in large quantities. If provided in a smaller quantity, your child can digest buffalo milk. Make sure you boil the milk first, cool it down, remove the layer of cream and then feed it to your child.

How much Milk should Kids Drink?

How much Milk should Kids Drink?

Ages 1 to 2

According to American Academy of Paediatrics, when your child completes one year, you can introduce cow milk in his/her diet. Kids at this age need a high-fat diet for healthy brain development. So at this age, you should give your child full-fat milk. At this stage, 32 ounces, or 4 cups of milk daily is sufficient.

Ages 2 to 8

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, kids in the age group 2 to 3 years should drink at least 2 cups of milk/ dairy every day.

Kids of age group 4 to 8 years should consume 2.5 cups of milk/dairy every day. You may also substitute milk with dairy products.

Age 9 years and older

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, children aged 9 and older and adults should consume at least 3 cups from the dairy group each day.

Is Milk Necessary for Kids?

No, it is not necessary. If your child does not like to drink milk, do not stress. You can substitute milk with milk products. One cup of dairy is equivalent to 1 cup of milk, 1 cup of yoghurt, 2 slices of processed cheese and 2 cups of cottage cheese. If your child is not in a mood for milk, you can give him yoghurt.

How much is one cup of dairy ?

We hope you found the article useful and found all your questions answered related to cow milk vs buffalo milk, which is better for kids? Share your views in the comments box below. What do you prefer to give to your child?

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