Grow up with dairy foods

Childhood is the biggest opportunity to build strong bones for life. That's why it's so important for growing kids to get enough calcium, exercise and vitamin D.

A calcium-rich diet during childhood helps maximise peak bone mass and reduces the risk of osteoporosis and fractures in later life.

  • How much dairy do kids need?

    Dairy foods including milk, cheese and yogurt, are best known for calcium, however they also contain a range of other essential nutrients for bone health including protein, phosphorus, magnesium and zinc. In addition, dairy foods contain other vitamins and minerals like potassium, vitamin A and B12 and riboflavin which are all nutrients kids need for growth and development.

    As children grow, their requirements from the dairy food group grow too. The dairy food group is one of the five food groups and includes milk, cheese, yogurt and/or alternatives.

    A serve is simply one cup of milk (250ml), two slices of cheese (40g) or ¾ of a cup of yogurt (200g).


  • Run and jump outside to be strong.

    Kids are full of energy, and running and jumping around outside is not only fun, but also helps strengthen their bones. Just like muscles, bones grow stronger and harder when they are exercised. Known as ‘weight bearing exercise’, this includes any exercise where your feet and legs carry your weight.

    The third ingredient that is essential for building healthy, strong bones is vitamin D. Kids absorb vitamin D from safe sun exposure.

    During summer in the southern parts of Australia, and all year round in the north, most of us need a few minutes a day of sun exposure to an area of skin equivalent to your face, arms and hands. And, in winter in the southern parts of Australia, most of us need about two to three hours per week to help with our vitamin D levels.