What are Vitamins?
Finding the best vitamins for kids is the foremost duty of every parent.Vitamins are nutrients your body needs for growth and development, to boost immunity and fight against infections.
The human body cannot produce vitamins by itself. So you must obtain them through the food you eat daily or through vitamin supplements. There are 13 vitamins that are required for your body.
Probiotics and Prebiotics are also essential in the diet for boosting the immune system and to fight against infections. It has been observed that regular consumption of probiotics may positively influence our health.
Prebiotics are digestible food ingredients that can bring beneficial effects on health by stimulating the growth or activity of specific health-promoting bacteria in the colon.
Types Of Vitamins
Vitamins are of two types, fat-soluble and water-soluble. Vitamin A, D, E, and K are fat-soluble vitamins, that means they are not soluble in water and are only soluble in fats. They are present in foods containing fats and also require fat in order to be absorbed by the body.
Whereas Vitamin B1 (thiamine), Vitamin B2 (riboflavin), Vitamin B3 (niacin), Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid), Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine), Vitamin B7 (biotin), Vitamin B9 (folic acid), Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin) and Vitamin C are water-soluble vitamins. Water-soluble vitamins are not stored in the body, therefore, they need to be taken daily.
- Vitamin A: Vitamin A promotes the growth and development of the cells and tissues of the body, improves eyesight, repairs tissue, keeps skin healthy, and fights against infections. Yellow and orange pigmented fruits and vegetables, egg yolks, dairy products, fish oils and apricots contain Vitamin A.
Deficiency Symptoms: visual impairment and blindness, rashes all over the body, liver disorders, weakened immunity, retardation of growth and respiratory infections.
- Vitamin D: Regular exposure to the sun is the most natural way to get sufficient vitamin D. Vitamin D is essential for calcium absorption and for strong bones and teeth. Foods rich in vitamin D include milk, egg yolks, fish, meat and orange juice.
Deficiency Symptoms: muscle cramps, soft bones, skeletal diseases (rickets), bone fractures due to tender bones.
- Vitamin E: Vitamin E acts as an antioxidant, protects the cells and tissues from damage. Vitamin E is also needed for the production of red blood cells. Good sources of vitamin E include breast milk, vegetable oils, nuts, seeds, green leafy vegetables, and wheat germ.
Deficiency Symptoms: loss of coordination, difficulty in walking and standing, muscle weakness and slow reflexes.
- Vitamin K: Vitamin K is vital for blood clots. If a kid gets a wound and has severe bleeding from the wound and doesn’t clot, it indicates that the kid is having vitamin K deficiency. Foods rich in vitamin K are leafy green vegetables, fruits (blackberries, blueberries, figs, kiwi, and avocado), tomatoes, dairy products, soybean oil and broccoli.
Deficiency Symptoms: excessive bleeding from wound or cut, decrease bone strength and prone to osteoporosis.
- Vitamin B1 (thiamine): Vitamin B1 converts food into energy. Vitamin B1 is needed to stimulate healthy skin, hair, nails, muscles, brain and nerve function. Most nutritious foods like pork, seafood, brown rice, watermelon, ham and soya milk contain thiamin.
Deficiency Symptoms: loss of appetite, fatigue, tingling sensation in arms and legs, muscle weakness, blurred vision, alteration in the heart rate, shortness of breath, nausea and vomiting.
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin): Vitamin B2 converts food into energy. Vitamin B2 is needed for healthy skin, hair, blood, and brain. Foods rich in riboflavin are dairy products, green leafy vegetables, meats, whole and enriched grains and cereals.
Deficiency Symptoms: cracks in the skin at the corners of the mouth, inflamed, fissures on the lips and tongue colour changes to magenta.
- Vitamin B3 (niacin): Vitamin B3 is needed for healthy skin, blood cells, brain, and nervous system. Vitamin B3 converts food into energy. Meat, fish, poultry, soya milk, mushrooms, potatoes, pumpkin seeds, whole grains and peanut butter are rich sources of niacin.
Deficiency Symptoms: pellagra, headaches, swelling, vomiting, nausea, mood swing (anxiety or depression), memory problems, depression, diarrhoea, and constipation.
- Vitamin B5 (pantothenic acid): Wide variety of nourishing foods, such as chicken, egg yolk, broccoli, whole grains, peas, mushrooms, lentils, avocados, and tomatoes are rich sources of pantothenic acid. Pantothenic acid is required for making new blood cells, and it helps to convert the food into energy.
Deficiency Symptoms: headache, fatigue, memory problems, impaired muscle coordination and gastrointestinal problems.
- Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine): Vitamin B6 helps to reduce the risk of heart disease, to make lipids (fats), to make red blood cells, neurotransmitters, boost brain performance, steroid hormones, and haemoglobin. Vitamin B6 rich foods are bread, fish, eggs, vegetables, meat, legumes, tofu, potatoes, fruits (bananas, avocados, and watermelons) and other soya products.
Deficiency Symptoms: hypothyroidism, diabetes, anaemia, numbness, pain in the hands and feet, confusion, weaken the immune system, depression and headache.
- Vitamin B7 (biotin): Vitamin B7 is needed for healthy bones and hair. It converts food into energy and synthesizes glucose. It also helps to make and break down some fatty acids. Many foods, including whole grains, meats, egg yolks, seeds, nuts, soyabeans, fish and sweet potatoes are rich in biotin.
Deficiency Symptoms: red rash in the face, numbness, pain in the hands and feet, seizures, weaken immunity, susceptibility to microbial infections, hallucinations, loss of hair
- Vitamin B9 (folic acid): Vitamin B9 is vital for making new cells, making and repairing DNA, preventing brain and spine defects of the fetus when taken early in pregnancy, reducing heart disease, and reducing the risk for colon cancer. Best sources of vitamin B9 are citrus fruit juices and dark green vegetables.
Deficiency Symptoms: lead to severe neurological complications, grey hair, anaemia, birth defects, tongue swelling and mouth sores.
- Vitamin B12 (cyanocobalamin): Vitamin B12 is also known as Cyanocobalamin, which performs the biological functions for normal maintenance and optimal growth, therefore they have to be supplied in small amounts in the daily diet. Vitamin B12 is naturally found in animal-based foods, including meats, fish, poultry, eggs and dairy products. It plays an essential role in the production of RBC and DNA, as well as the proper functioning of the nervous system.
Deficiency Symptoms: gastritis, bacterial/parasite growth in the small intestine, low immunity, anaemia and disorder in the nervous system.
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C is vital for good health and development especially during winter for cold and flu. It helps the body to fight against infection in any cut or wound and helps the wound to heal faster. Vitamin C is important for keeping gums, bones, and blood vessels in good shape. Foods rich in vitamin C include all citrus fruits, tomatoes, cabbage, sweet red peppers, and broccoli.
Deficiency Symptoms: scurvy, cold, cough, poor wound healing, muscle weakness, and bleeding gums.
Why are Vitamins necessary for the kids?
Daily meals including green vegetables, grain food, fresh fruits, dairy products, chicken, eggs, meat, fish, and nuts are the best vitamins for kids for their growth, energy, and development. Essential vitamins include vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K which are vital for their growth, activity, learning, and behavior, to boost immunity and fight against diseases.
Lactating mothers provide most of the vitamins to their kids. Kids who do not get these essential vitamins lead to a serious ailment.
Many of the kids are picky food eaters and working parents are not having sufficient time to feed their child or he/she is suffering from chronic medical conditions such as asthma or digestive problems.
It is seen that picky eaters do not eat homemade food and eat a lot of convenience food, fast food, and processed food. As far as possible these fast foods, carbonated sodas, and fried foods should be avoided.
You can take your kid to a pediatrician if you think whether your kid is getting the recommended level of vitamins. The pediatrician will suggest a multivitamin designed for your kid’s age group.
Best Vitamins for kids
- Drops of Iron supplement: Alvitom Drops is a great tasting best vitamin for kids with Iron supplement in orange flavor for a picky eater. It helps to support the baby’s healthy growth, development, and immune system. This multivitamin container contains 30 ml of drops. It delivers 100% of the daily intake of essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B, and D.
- Probiotic Vitamin Gummies: This bite-sized multivitamin is packed with all the essential ingredients kiddos need in a delicious gummy, plus a boost of the good probiotic bacteria to help little bodies thrive. This multivitamin container contains 50 counts of delicious gummy. It is a blend of vitamins A, C, D, E, B’s, and zinc. Available in tropical mango flavor. Distributed by Olly Public Benefit Corporation.
- Prebiotic Vitamin Gummies: Smarty Pants gummies is the best vitamin for kids which comprises the highest quality essential nutrients required for the immune system, healthy brain and memory. It includes all-natural flavors derived from sources like spices, fruits, vegetables and herbs. No addition of synthetic colours, artificial flavors or artificial sweeteners. It is available in 3 delicious flavors, strawberry banana, orange, and lemon. It is a blend of vitamins D3 (for immunity), vitamin K (for bones), omega 3s, prebiotic fibre, beta carotene and the natural colours (organic turmeric, organic black carrot juice and annatto). This multivitamin container contains 120 counts of gummies.
- Drops of Calcium: Strong Calcium + K2 drops contain 100 mg calcium and 5 mcg Vitamin K2 per serving size (3 Dropper – 3 ml). The unique patented ratio of calcium and K2 vitamin helps to improve calcium absorption by the human body which leads to healthy bones and teeth and it also tastes great. Drops may be given directly into the mouth or mixed with fruit juice, or other foods.
- Soft gels of Vitamin E: Nature’s way EFA Blend, are the best vitamin for kids available in soft gels which are enriched with vitamin E, Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and fish oil. These soft gels are required for maintaining good vision & brain function of the kids. It is cut open and the contents are mixed with food or drink. The container contains 120 soft gels.
- Choco bites as Brain Boosters: 1 choco bite of Activkids Brain Boosters daily is the best vitamins for kids to develop a healthy brain, improves concentration, increases grasping power, builds stamina, and improves learning capacity. It contains milk compounds, almonds, minerals, flavors, vitamins with added flavors. This multivitamin container contains 30 counts of choco bite. Manufactured by Cipla Pharmaceuticals.
- Liquid Multivitamin: Liquid Multivitamin for kids strengthens your kid’s bones, maintains healthy muscle development, and helps support their immune system. One shot of drink is packed with herbs, essential vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and amino acids that are the best vitamin for kids designed to give maximum absorption for a full day’s worth of calcium, magnesium, and Vitamin D3. It is sugar-free, gluten-free, and has a great fruity taste.
- Mineral-rich Gummies: Happi Kidz Multi-Vitamin & Mineral Gummies are the best vitamins for kids with added minerals. Each gummy bear is packed with 16 essential Vitamins & Minerals. Vitamin A is for vision and eyes, Iodine improves IQ, vitamin B complex for cell metabolism and growth, vitamin C promotes immunity, zinc enhances immune system vitamin E and selenium acts as an antioxidant.
- Multivitamin soft candies: This supplement contains the best vitamin for kids. It contains vitamins A, C, D, E, and zinc. It is recommended for the kids who are of growing age. Their body is continuously changing, they are more physically active and thus, healthy bones and joints are required. This multivitamin container contains 30 gummies that are needed to build healthy bones and joints, healthy metabolism, growth and development, better eye health, boost the immune system, and to have balanced mental health and energy. Available in lemon and strawberry flavors. Manufactured by Meadbery Pharmaceutical Company.
- Cereal rich in Iron: Nestle Ceregrow is a nutrient-dense kids cereal with the goodness of multigrain, milk, and 5 fruits. It is rich in Iron for regular cognitive development, protein, 17 vitamins, and minerals. Vitamin A, C, D, and calcium that helps in growth and development. Manufactured by Nestle – nutrition.
- Milk Powder rich in Vitamins: Enfagrow A+ Nutritional milk powder is the best vitamins for kids that are available in the form of milk powder. The DHA in Enfagrow A+ is high quality, specifically approved for use in pediatric nutrition. DHA, which is a key building block of the brain, is difficult to get at adequate levels from a kids commonly consumed food like milk, wheat, rice, vegetables, fruits and chicken. Enfagrow A+ also helps to meet RDA levels for other brain-building micronutrients like Iron, zinc, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12, and folate. It is available in vanilla flavor.
- Biscuits of Mango & Kiwi: Toddler Mum-Mum organic rice biscuits of mango and kiwi are the best vitamins for kids available in the form of biscuits. These rich biscuits are simply delicious, they are organic, gluten-free, egg-free and peanut-free, without any artificial additives and preservatives and only lightly and naturally sweetened. Biscuits are oven-baked and individually wrapped for freshness. Toddler Mum-Mum is a perfect snack for home, daycare, playdates or for taking with you on-the-go!. Manufactured by Guangzhou Big Want Foods Ltd.
How Vitamins are an essential part of the diet?
Each of the vitamins listed above has an important function in the body. A vitamin deficiency occurs when you do not get enough of certain vitamins. Vitamin deficiency can cause serious health problems.
For healthy people, vitamin supplements may help to prevent vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
When the regular diet does not supply all the necessary nutrients.
In recent years, functional foods have gained popularity among kids and elders. This concept of functional foods was first developed in Japan in the 1980s when, faced with escalating health care costs.
The Ministry of Health and Welfare started a regulatory system to approve certain foods with documented health benefits.
In hope of improving the health of the nation’s aging population.
Functional foods are fortified, enriched or boosted foods that have health-promoting properties over and above their nutritional value. All foods are functional to some extent because they provide taste, aroma, and prevent vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
The level of consumption of the food that is required to achieve a beneficial effect on health is an important consideration.
Functional foods provide benefits in health terms, but should not be seen as an alternative to a varied and balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.
Functional foods do not provide a miracle solution to health problems but may be useful to some people as part of a healthy diet and lifestyle.