The potential nutrition-, physical- and health-related benefits of cow’s milk for primary-school-aged children

Rumbold, Penny, McCullogh, Nicola, Boldon, Ruth, Haskell-Ramsay, Crystal, James, Lewis, Stevenson, Emma and Green, Benjamin (2022) The potential nutrition-, physical- and health-related benefits of cow’s milk for primary-school-aged children. Nutrition Research Reviews, 35 (1). pp. 50-69. ISSN 0954-4224

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Cow's milk is a naturally nutrient-dense foodstuff. A significant source of many essential nutrients, its inclusion as a component of a healthy balanced diet has been long recommended. Beyond milk's nutritional value, an increasing body of evidence illustrates cow's milk may confer numerous benefits related to health. Evidence from adult populations suggests that cow's milk may have a role in overall dietary quality, appetite control, hydration and cognitive function. Although evidence is limited compared to the adult literature, these benefits may be echoed in recent paediatric studies. This article, therefore, reviews the scientific literature to provide an evidence-based evaluation of the associated health benefits of cow's milk consumption in primary-school aged children (4-11 years). We focus on seven key areas related to nutrition and health comprising nutritional status, hydration, dental and bone health, physical stature, cognitive function, and appetite control. The evidence consistently demonstrates cow's milk (plain and flavoured) improves nutritional status in primary-school aged children. With some confidence, cow's milk also appears beneficial for hydration, dental and bone health and beneficial to neutral concerning physical stature and appetite. Due to conflicting studies, reaching a conclusion has proven difficult concerning cow's milk and cognitive function therefore a level of caution should be exercised when interpreting these results. All areas, however, would benefit from further robust investigation, especially in free-living school settings, to verify conclusions. Nonetheless, when the nutritional-, physical- and health-related impact of cow's milk avoidance is considered, the evidence highlights the importance of increasing cow's milk consumption.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Funding information: This work was supported by funding from Cool Milk Ltd.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Children, Dairy, Health, Milk, Nutrition, Paediatrics
Subjects: B400 Nutrition
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Psychology
Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation
Depositing User: Rachel Branson
Date Deposited: 25 Oct 2021 13:24
Last Modified: 29 Jun 2022 13:00

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