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Milk and Alternatives

Milk and its alternatives are very important, since they are excellent sources of calcium, vitamin D, and many other essential nutrients. They play a vital role in the development and health of bones and teeth.

Milk is enriched with vitamin D, unlike most other dairy products. This vitamin helps ensure that calcium is absorbed properly, which builds strong bones and healthy teeth. In addition, milk is the absolute best source of calcium. The calcium in milk is more readily absorbed than that from other dietary sources because of the phosphorus and vitamin D in milk. So, drink milk regularly!

Getting the Most Out of the Recommendations in Canada's Food Guide

  • Choose milk and alternatives that are lower in fat.
  • Drink skim, 1%, or 2% milk every day.
  • Look for alternatives that have been fortified with calcium and vitamin D.

Recommended Servings

Canada’s Food Guide recommends that adults have 2 to 3 servings of milk and alternatives every day, depending on age and gender.

A serving is :

  • 250 mL (1 cup) of milk
  • 250 mL (1 cup) of fortified soy beverage
  • 175 mL (¾ cup) of yogurt or kefir
  • 50 g of cheese

Simple Tips for Eating more Dairy Products

  • If you don’t like the taste of milk, you can flavor it with vanilla or chocolate powder. You can also make milkshakes with fruit or in a variety of flavors, such as chocolate, coffee, vanilla, and maple.
  • Choose fortified soy beverages.
  • Drink the milk from your cereal.
  • Plain yogurt, ricotta cheese, and cottage cheese are good substitutes for mayonnaise in dips. Try them with your favorite seasonings. You can also add finely grated cheese.
  • Use ricotta or cottage cheese in your lasagna. What wonderful flavor !