Vitamins and Your Child

Children can be a source of constant joy as well as a cause for worry. Most parents worry about what their child eats, whether it is enough and the adequacy of nutrition. If you listen to parents express their frustrations, more likely than not, it will revolve around whether their child has eaten enough. Honestly, the calorie need of a child is not that much. Most children probably end up eating much more than they need from healthy or unhealthy sources. Instead, perhaps you should consider whether they are getting adequate vitamins and minerals.

Vitamins and Minerals are best sourced from natural foods. Supplementation should be a last resort and only if you are unable to convince your child to eat a particular food type. Remember, many vitamins and minerals have an upper limit for their Daily Required Intake or DRI and leaving supplements lying around for a child to chug away at is not a good idea at all. In excess, they can be toxic to your child.

Some of the Vitamins you should be worrying about include Vitamin A which promotes good eyesight and skin. Think carrots. Vitamin B is essential for Red Blood Cells and metabolism. Think fish and milk. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and necessary for muscle and skin. Think citrus fruits and berries. Vitamin D is essential for healthy bones and absorption of calcium. Think sunshine but also dairy and egg. Finally, growing children need iron, necessary for the production of blood and building muscle. Low iron can lower immunity making them vulnerable to disease and infection. Think prunes. Finally, your child needs calcium for healthy bones. Think milk, cheese and yogurt.

You are unlikely to get it all right and ensure that your child eats everything he or so needs. If you are struggling, do consult a doctor to ask about what you should supplement and how.


Ritesh is a born again health enthusiast and holds a Certificate in Physiology from Harvard Medical School and a Certificate in Nutrition from Tufts University.