Calcium Needs For Children With Cow's Milk Allergy

Calcium Needs For Children With Cow's Milk Allergy

Is your child getting enough calcium? If your child has to avoid dairy products for their cow's milk allergy, make sure they are eating enough other foods containing calcium.


How much calcium does my child need each day?

Dairy products provide most people with their main source of calcium. If your child has to avoid dairy products because they are allergic to cow's milk, make sure they are eating enough other foods containing calcium to meet their daily needs.

Age mg/day
1 - 3 500
4 - 8 700
9 - 11 1000
12 - 18 1300

What dairy-free foods have calcium?

You can also check KidsHealth's top tips on how to include calcium foods

Alternative milks Calcium (mg)
Soy, oat, rice, almond, cashew milks, fortified with calcium 100mls 120
Alternative dairy products  
Angel Foods cheddar, mozzarella, smoked 30g 99
Alpro soy custard 100mls 120
Alpro soy dessert 125g 150
Little Island yoghurt - cashew based 100g 150
Dairy free Up and Go 100mls 120
Tofu (soy bean curd) 100g 186
Light 'n' Tasty (1 cup) (check labels) 450 - 650
Special K (1 cup) 200
Nutrigrain (1 cup) 80
Egg, boiled (size 7) 26
Fish & shellfish  
Salmon, canned in spring water 100g (including the bones) 320
Sardines, canned in spring water 90g 306
Green mussels, steamed, x 1 15
Dried figs x 2 64
Fresh fruit, 1 average serve 20 - 60
Rhubarb (1 cup) 282
Baked beans (½ cup) 50
Cannellini beans, canned (¼ cup) 26
Chia seeds (1 Tablespoon) 73
Poppy seeds (1 teaspoon) 43
LSA (ground linseed, sunflower, almond) (1 Tablespoon) 13
Tahini (2 Tablespoons) 106
Tree Nuts  
Almonds, raw, 10 23
Spinach, boiled (½ cup) 66
Kale, sauteed (½ cup) 125
Rocket leaves (1 cup) 75
Broccoli, boiled (½ cup) 26

Remember to check labels of all foods and fluid products to make sure they do not include allergens your child reacts to.

Should my child have a calcium supplement?

Your child may need a calcium supplement if they are only getting 50 percent or less of their calcium needs due to a lack of calcium-rich foods. You can buy a calcium supplement, or your doctor can prescribe one. Give your child a calcium supplement with meals. It is best not to take the supplement with iron rich foods. So, breakfast may be the best meal to take it with.

A multivitamin and mineral supplement will not provide enough calcium. You will need to give your child a separate calcium supplement. There are many options available. You can buy them online, at the supermarket, health shop or at your local pharmacy.

If you are buying a supplement, check the supplement is dairy-free, or free of any other ingredients your child may be allergic to. Ask your family doctor to refer you to a dietitian. A dietitian will check how much calcium your child is currently getting in food. They will give you advice about how much extra calcium your child will need.


The Concise NZ Food Composition Tables, 14th Edition, 2021.

Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand, Executive Summary, Ministry of Health, 2006.


The content on this page has been developed and approved by the National Child and Youth Allergy Clinical Network, Paediatric Society New Zealand.

This page last reviewed 08 December 2022.

Call Healthline on 0800 611 116 any time of the day or night for free health advice when you need it