Dairy Council Northern Ireland

Milk it for all it's worth

Key stage 1

Nutrients in school milk

As well as calcium, a carton of mid–morning milk provides lots of other essential nutrients including protein, potassium, iodine, phosphorus and B–vitamins. It’s a powerful boost to meeting children’s nutrient needs; a carton of school milk will provide more than half of a five–year–old child’s calcium, phosphorus, iodine and vitamin B2 requirements and a third of their protein needs. 

 

Protein

Needed for 

  • Maintenance of normal bone
  • Muscle growth
  • Muscle maintenance
  • Normal bone growth and development in children

Calcium

  • Normal growth and development of bones
  • Maintenance of normal bone
  • Maintenance of normal teeth
  • Normal blood clotting
  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Normal muscle function
  • Process of cell division
  • Normal neurotransmission

Iodine

  • Normal growth of children
  • Maintenance of normal skin
  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Normal cognitive function
  • Normal production and function of thyroid hormones
  • Normal functioning of the nervous system

Vitamin B2 

  • Maintenance of normal skin
  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Maintenance of normal red blood cells
  • Maintenance of normal vision
  • Normal iron metabolism
  • Reduction in tiredness and fatigue

Vitamin B12

  • Normal energy–yielding metabolism
  • Maintenance of normal red blood cells
  • Reduction in tiredness and fatigue
  • Normal psychological function
  • Process of cell division
  • Normal immune function

Percentage (%) of a primary school child’s nutrient needs* provided by a carton (189ml) of semi–skimmed milk:

Nutrient4–6 years*7–10 years*
Vitamin B25947
Vitamin B12 100+100+
Calcium5243
Phosphorus5241
Iodine2815
Protein3424

*Percentage nutrient needs met

All the milk provided in primary schools is semi–skimmed. Semi–skimmed milk has fewer calories and less fat than whole milk, and less vitamin A. But levels of other nutrients including protein, calcium, and vitamins such as vitamin B2 and B12 aren’t reduced. Breaktime milk is also a good source of fluid to help beat thirst and keep children well hydrated. If children are dehydrated they can feel groggy and irritable and their memory and concentration suffer.

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From the farm to the fridge, the Dairy Council for Northern Ireland acts on behalf of the dairy industry, advertising and promoting the natural goodness and quality of Northern Ireland milk and dairy products.

Our primary function is to communicate factual information to allow individuals to make well informed choices about dairy products that they consume and to inform them of the benefits of including dairy products in a balanced diet. We use a wide range of media, which includes television, radio, press, magazine, posters and the internet. Our Advertising is complemented by public relations and promotional activities designed to communicate with specific groups.

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