Livestream Highlights Dairy’s Role in a Healthy Diet

United Dairy Industry of Michigan

The United Dairy Industry of Michigan teamed up with NHL star Justin Abdelkader to fuel kids’ bodies and minds with a dairy-filled cooking demonstration and book reading.

More than 12,000 kids and parents tuned in to a recent United Dairy Industry of Michigan (UDIM) Facebook Live featuring a dairy-filled cooking demonstration and book reading by National Hockey League star Justin Abdelkader.

“Like Justin, dairy farmers are passionate about helping kids reach their goals. We know a nutritious diet including dairy is key to helping kids learn,” says Brianna Banka, UDIM Youth Wellness Manager. “Justin shares a passion for childhood nutrition and education, which made this partnership a natural fit. He leads by example in fueling his body and mind with nutritionally powerful meals, including calcium-rich milk.”



The professional hockey left wing whipped up a batch of his nutritious, overnight oats that include milk as a key ingredient while he explained how calcium-rich dairy is an important part of a healthy diet. Justin began a partnership with UDIM in early 2019, his leadership on and off the ice combined with this interest in good nutrition and child literacy makes him a great fit to represent Michigan’s dairy farmers.

“Just as nutrition is key to performance for professional athletes like Justin, nutrition is just as important for a student’s academic success,” says Banka. “Starting the day with a healthy breakfast can ensure students are ready to learn while school is in session at home.”

Following his recipe demonstration, Abdelkader treated viewers to a reading of his inspiring children’s book “Shoot for the Goal: The Justin Abdelkader Story.” It tells Abdelkader’s story of how hard work and determination helped make his childhood dreams of playing professional hockey and earning his college degree a reality.

The interactive event featured prizes, questions and dairy nutrition tips that were a big hit with participating parents, who shared:

  • “My son loved this! After eating his overnight oats and listening to the live, he ran outside and started practicing his hockey skills in the driveway. That way he, too, can be like Justin.”
  • “Thank you for doing the Facebook Live breakfast with Justin. We loved the oats recipe. We won the autographed book and puck!”
  • “We learned that you need three servings of milk daily.”

Watch a replay of the Live event here. Visit to learn more about UDIM and find more nutritious dairy recipes.

About the United Dairy Industry of Michigan

The United Dairy Industry of Michigan (UDIM) is dedicated to serving Michigan’s hard-working dairy farm families and promoting Michigan’s locally produced dairy products. UDIM is the umbrella organization for the American Dairy Association and Dairy Council of Michigan. These non-profit organizations provide dairy product promotion and nutrition education services on behalf of their funding members.



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