If you believe everything that you see on television, then you would believe that your child needs to take a least one multivitamin per day. However, are vitamins really that necessary for children? Shouldn’t kids get their vitamins from their meals?
The answer to all of these questions is yes. Kids really should be getting all of their essential nutrients from food, but if a child is a picky eater than a vitamin may be necessary.
Ideally, kids would eat a variety of foods including fruits, vegetables, dairy products, and lean meats. However, every mom knows that kids don’t live in an ideal world.
Most kids are extremely picky and aren’t great eaters. If your child is picky, then it is likely that they aren’t getting all the nutrients they need to grow strong and healthy.
A well-balanced diet for a child includes milk and dairy products such as yogurt and cheeses, multiple servings of fruits and vegetables per day, lean proteins such as chicken, fish and certain red meats, and whole grains. Whole grain foods include brown rice and oats.
Each day children should receive meals that incorporate these foods into their diets. Plus, they should be drinking plenty of water in order to stay hydrated.
However, if you are a mom, then you know how hard it can be to force your child to eat all of their vegetables, and maybe even their fruits. Mealtimes often turn into fights with small children, and after awhile, it might become more of an issue of food volume than quality.
If your child is super picky, then finding a multivitamin to supplement their diet could be a great idea.
Who Could Benefit from Vitamins
Whether your child is extremely picky, or you may not have time to make well-balanced meals each night, there is a certain population of children who could benefit from vitamins. For this reason, most pediatricians recommend a daily multivitamin for kids who:
– Don’t eat regular meals
– Don’t eat well-balanced meals
– Have chronic illnesses such as asthma or digestive issues such as celiac disease
– Take a lot of medications
– Eat a lot of fast food or convenience, processed foods
– Eat a vegetarian or vegan diet
– Drink a lot of soda or juice
If your child fits into any of these categories, then they may benefit from a multivitamin.
What Vitamins Should be Included in a Multivitamin?
If you take a stroll down the vitamin aisle, then you may actually get lost in the multitude of vitamins that available. Vitamins don’t have to be super complicated, and with a little help, you can choose the right multivitamin for your child.
First, look for the gummy or chewable section. Unless your child is great at swallowing pills, then you don’t want to buy a pill that they have to swallow each day. This may just turn into a fight each morning or night, and cause them to not want to take their daily vitamins.
Secondly, look for these vitamins to be included in your child’s multivitamin. The following vitamins can help your child grow strong and healthy.
Vitamin A is a vitamin that is often found in foods that are orange in color. Carrots, sweet potatoes, and squash are all perfect sources of this vitamin. However, most kids don’t eat much sweet potatoes and squash, but they may eat a lot of carrots. This vitamin helps your child grow and develop normally. It also is helpful in keeping their skin and eyes healthy. Plus, it can promote a healthy immune system.
The vitamin B family should also be included in your child’s multivitamin. The B vitamins include B2, B3, B6, and B12. This family of vitamins can help aid in a healthy metabolism and keep your child energetic and healthy. Plus, they can protect your child’s nervous system and circulatory system. The B vitamins can be found in nuts, eggs, milk, and beans. So, if your child is following a vegetarian or vegan diet, then it is especially important to look for B vitamins in your child’s vitamins.
Vitamin C is a wonderful vitamin that helps give your child a healthy immune system. It also promotes healthy muscles and skin. Good sources of this vitamin include citrus fruits, kiwi, tomatoes, and green vegetables.
Vitamin D is another wonderful vitamin that should be found in your child’s multivitamin. It is crucial for bone development and growth and can help your child grow strong bones as they get taller. It is especially important to take vitamin D and calcium together to promote bone health. Vitamin D can be found in many fatty fish such as salmon or can be derived from the sun.
Calcium is a great vitamin that also helps to promote healthy bone growth. As your child grows older, it is essential that they have enough calcium in their diets. Calcium is stored away in your body as you grow older, so if your child doesn’t receives enough calcium as a child, it is less likely that they will develop osteoporosis as an adult.
Iron is an essential vitamin that will help build red blood cells and keep your child’s energy levels high. It is especially important for girls to take an iron supplement once they begin menstruating to prevent iron deficiency anemia. Younger children and toddlers can also benefit from iron in order to keep their blood counts up and healthy. Good sources of iron include red meats, pork, beans, and spinach.
Choosing a multivitamin for your child can be difficult, but as long as you find a multivitamin that your child will actually take and that includes the above-mentioned vitamins, it will be a good choice.
Look for vitamins that are themed, and your child will love taking them. Today, there are many cartoon and movie-themed vitamins that will make your children eager to take them and make you happy to know that they are healthy.