Milk Matters is a public health education campaign to promote calcium consumption among tweens and teens, especially during the ages of 11 to 15, a time of critical bone growth.
Bones are growing their fastest during the tween and teen years, and adequate calcium intake during these years helps prevent osteoporosis later in life. But, studies show that most tweens and teens are not getting enough of it in their diets. Fewer than one in 10 girls and only one in four boys ages 9 to 13 are at or above their adequate intake of calcium.
Although the consequences of low calcium consumption may not be visible in childhood, the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) recognizes lack of calcium intake as a serious and growing threat to the health of young people later in life.
The NICHD started the Milk Matters campaign in 1997 to help increase calcium consumption among children and teens. At a time when they require more nutrients for their rapidly growing and developing bodies, tweens and teens who don't get enough calcium are putting themselves at increased risk for osteoporosis when they are older.
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