How Much Fluid Should My Child Be Drinking?


How much fluid should my child be drinking?According to the book, Give Peas a Chance, toddlers should not be drinking more than 32 ounces of fluid a day between milk, juice, and water.

The goal is to have your child drink about 16 oz of milk (not flavored milk) a day and the rest be water.

You don’t want to limit how much water your child drinks in a day, but instead try to limit how much milk your child is drinking in a day, if your child is drinking over 16 oz.

Why You Want to Limit How Much Milk Your Child Drinks

She sees some toddlers who drink too much milk, which can cause anemia.

She’s also seen patients that drink very little milk because their drink of choice is juice, which is devoid of healthy fats. Plus, check out this article to find out more reasons why you shouldn’t give your kids juice.

There are studies that show toddlers who drink too much milk generally take in 50% less calories in a day than those children who eat proper meals and drink milk. That’s huge!

The author, Kate Samela, who is a registered dietitian specializing in pediatric nutrition, says that some of the most common reasons for “poor weight gain” stem from toddlers who drink too much throughout the day.

How Much is Too Much?

Toddlers should be drinking 16-20 oz of milk a day, preferably after their meal, and hopefully not before. It can be filling before a meal. A child is less likly to be an adventurous eater when he or she is not hungry before a meal. Find out why.

And, aim to have our child drink 32 oz of fluid a day, which can include a combination of water, juice and milk. Find out why your child should not be drinking juice.

The goal is to have your child drink about 16 oz of milk (not flavored milk) a day and the rest be water.

Also, she recommends full fat cow’s milk for children who are not overweight. Ultimately, ask your doctor if your child should be on full-fat milk or reduced fat or if your doctor recommends an alternative.

Some children have a dairy allergy or intolerance and need to be put on a lactose-free milk, or specific formula as a substitute. Again, consult your doctor.

Here is a great infographic to see if your child is getting enough protein in a day and how much milk your child should drink by age.

Is My Kid Getting Enough Protein INFOGRAPHIC from Feeding My Kid. How do you know if your child is getting enough protein? Children Nutrition


In Give Peas a Chance, Samela created this table to illustrate the importance of cow’s milk to a growing child. In the table, you’ll see how cow’s milk has the most protein and by far the most fat per cup.

Milk (1 Cup) Calories Protein Fat Calcium Vitamins A & D
Whole cow’s 150 8 g 8 g 300 mg A: 10% of RDA

D: 25% of RDA

Rice 120 1 g 2.5 g 300 mg Levels vary
Almond 70 5 g 2 g 100 mg Levels vary
Soy 100-120 6 g 3.5 g 100 mg Levels vary
Hemp 100 2 g 6 g 300 mg Levels vary
Coconut 100 1 g 5 g 100 mg Levels vary


What if your child is a juice drinker and you can’t get him or her to drink milk?

Do you need help weaning your child to milk?

Every child is different and situation. Before making changes, always check with your Pediatrician.

Join the conversation on our discussion boards.  Ask questions. Share advice.

Tell us what type of milk you offer to your little one and why.



The information on this website is designed for educational and/or entertainment purposes only. The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for informed medical advice or care. Please consult a doctor with any questions or concerns regarding your child’s condition. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat any health problems or illnesses.