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Parents of toddlers getting facts about popular nut milks and dairy substitutes from nonmedical influencers and bloggers

soy milk
Credit: Pixabay/CC0 Public Domain

Parents of young children under age 5, interested in alternatives to dairy milk, like nut and rice milks, are finding information online, and almost half of the most popular bloggers on this topic were neither dieticians or medical professionals, according to research presented during the 2023 AAP National Conference & Exhibition at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.

Researchers of the abstract, "Milk Mania: Analyzing Online Information and Perception regarding Milk Alternatives for Toddlers," studied the 145 most popular blogs for parents of children under age 5 on the topic of milk alternatives. They found that while many parents are seeking information online on the topic of alternatives for milk, 47% of the most popular bloggers on this topic were laypersons without . Of the other bloggers, 32% were nutritionists or dieticians, 12% physicians or nurses, 5% holistic providers, and 4% Ph.D.s and scientists.

"The large number of online blogs discussing dairy milk alternatives for toddlers suggests that this is an issue of great interest to caregivers, who may turn to blogs that provide unsupported information and nutritional recommendations about milk substitutes," said lead author Kara Sangiuolo, a at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. "I think that there is a major opportunity for pediatricians and pediatric nutritionists to enter the online space and provide more accurate, consistent information to support caregivers looking to transition their toddlers away from dairy milk."

Of the popular blogs studied, bloggers were most likely to recommend soy milk (37%) and pea milk (17%) as the best milk alternatives, and the most common alternatives referenced were (84%), almond milk (79%), and rice milk (65%). However, 14 blogs recommended making homemade milks for toddlers, and two blogs claimed homemade milk as the best milk alternative.

"Several blogs included unsupported recommendations such as making unfortified homemade milks for growing toddlers. The lack of consistent information across blogs was concerning, and only half of all blogs discussed the nutrient compositions of dairy milk alternatives," Sangiuolo said.

"This reveals the need for greater dissemination of accurate nutritional recommendations regarding dairy milk alternatives from pediatricians and nutritionists. This information can be delivered online to reach caregivers and better promote the and nutrition of toddlers in early childhood."

More information: Abstract Title: Milk Mania: Analyzing Online Information and Perception regarding Milk Alternatives for Toddlers

Citation: Parents of toddlers getting facts about popular nut milks and dairy substitutes from nonmedical influencers and bloggers (2023, October 20) retrieved 26 May 2024 from https://medicalxpress.com/news/2023-10-parents-toddlers-facts-popular-nut.html
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