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?

Alternative milks Calcium (mg)
Soy, rice, oat, almond milks, fortified with calcium, 100mls 120
Alternative dairy products  
Angel Foods cheddar, 30g 98

Kingland soy yoghurt, 100g

Alpro soy dessert, 125g 150
Alpro soy custard, 100mls 120
Tofu (soy bean curd), 1 cup 275
Light 'n' Tasty, 1 cup 400
Special K, 1 cup 320
Nutrigrain, 1 cup 110
Egg, 1 large 35
Fish & shellfish  
Salmon, canned in spring water, 100g (including the bones) 270
Sardines, 50g canned 250
Green mussels, steamed, x 1 14
Dried figs, x 2 64
Fresh fruit, 1 average serve 20
Rhubarb, 1 cup 230
Baked beans, ½ cup 50
Cannellini beans, canned, ¼ cup 28
Poppy seeds, 1 teaspoon 43

Sesame seeds, 2 tablespoons

Tahini, 2 tablespoons 106
Tree Nuts  
Almonds, raw, 10 34
Broccoli, boiled, 1 cup 52
Rocket leaves, 1 cup 75
Silverbeet, boiled, 1 cup 39
Spinach, boiled, 1 cup 130

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.

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 and 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, 12th edition, 2016.


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 17 February 2019.

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