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Dairy Group - How Much Dairy Does Your Child And Family Really Need?

Maggie LaBarbera • RN, MBA • May 12, 2012

First, My Plate tells us that we need dairy or foods high in calcium and vitamin D every day.  When you look at your plate, a balanced meal would have one serving milk or food rich in calcium on your plate or in a cup.  The dairy represents the blue part of the My Plate or the Food Pyramid.

The exact amount of dairy that each of your family members need really depends on these factors:

  • your age
  • your gender  dairy group cheese portion sizes
  • how active you are

To find out how much foods your child needs, visit our meal planner tool or for a print the daily requirements for your child.


General Daily Dairy Needs

In general, the USDA My Plate has created these daily recommended guidelines:

See what counts as a dairy serving.*

Dairy Group Recommended Daily Servings
2-3 years old 2  cups
4-8 years old
2 - 1/2 cups
Girls 9-13 years old
3 cups
Girls 14-18 years old
3 cups
Boys 9-13 years old
3 cups
Boys 14-18 years old
3 cups
Women 19-30 years old 3 cups
Women 31-50 years old 3 cups
Women 51+ years old 3 cups
Men 19-30 years old 3  cups
Men 31-50 years old 3  cups
Men 51+ years old 3 cups


daily requirements of the milk food group from my plate










See All Our Nutrition Articles


Written by Maggie LaBarberaWritten on May 12, 2012Last updated on Oct 15, 2013




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