Do Kids Need Vitamins?
Regular meals including vegetables, grain food, fruits, dairy products, chicken, eggs, meat, fish, & nuts are the best source of essential vitamins for a kid’s growth, energy, and development.
Essential vitamins include vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K which are necessary for their energy, activity, learning, and behavior, to boost immunity and fight against infections.
Kids not having these essential vitamins may lead to serious health problems. Breastfeeding mothers supply most of the vitamins to their kids. The best vitamins for kids are –
1. Vitamin A:
Vitamin A is the best vitamin to promote the growth and development of the cells and tissues of the body, improves eyesight, repairs tissue, revitalizes skin, 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, loss of energy, retardation of growth and respiratory infections.
2. Vitamin B:
It includes – 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).
All these best vitamins actively contribute to the healthy nerves, production of red blood cells, digestion, muscle growth, energy production, brain development, and stimulates healthy skin, hair, and nails in kids.
Seafood, dairy products, leafy green vegetables, peas, beans, wheat, oats, eggs, poultry and meats are a rich source of vitamin B.
Deficiency Symptoms: epilepsy, delayed growth, loss of energy, diarrhoea, poor concentration, dermatitis, body weakness, nausea, muscle weakness, poor blood formation and abdominal pain.
3. Vitamin C:
Vitamin C is vital for a kid’s good health and development especially during winter for cold and flu.
It is the best vitamin that 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, loss of energy and bleeding gums.
4. Vitamin D:
Vitamin D is the best vitamin for calcium absorption and for strong bones and teeth.
Regular exposure to the sun is the most natural way to get sufficient vitamin D. 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.
5. Vitamin E:
It 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, nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, green leafy vegetables, and wheat germ.
Deficiency Symptoms: loss of coordination, loss of energy, difficulty in walking and standing, muscle weakness and slow reflexes.
6. Vitamin K:
Vitamin K is the best vitamin 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, kiwi, and avocado), tomatoes, figs, dairy products, soybean oil and broccoli.
Deficiency Symptoms: excessive bleeding from wound or cut, decrease bone strength and prone to osteoporosis.
Kids’ body needs Iron to make hemoglobin. Without Iron, the body will stop producing red blood cells (RBCs).
Hemoglobin is essential for the blood to carry oxygen and deliver to all the cells. Foods rich in iron include fortified cereals (oatmeal), red meats (beef, organ meats, and liver), chicken, green leafy vegetables, and beans.
Deficiency Symptoms: muscle weakness, anaemia, loss of energy, low immune system, slow learning skills, and delayed motor skills.
Kids need calcium to prevent a disease called rickets. Calcium is needed to build strong bones and to keep the nerves healthy.
Kids/children, who get enough calcium, start their adult lives with the strongest bones.
Tofu, soybeans, almonds, sesame seeds, white beans, broccoli, Chinese cabbage, chickpeas, milk, cheese, yogurt, and other green leafy vegetables are rich in calcium.
Deficiency Symptoms: rickets, bow legs, stunted growth and weak muscles
Do Kids Need Vitamin Supplements?
Vitamin supplements are not necessary for most healthy kids who are growing normally. Many kids are picky food eaters and may turn up his/her nose at mealtimes.
This is sometimes a real struggle for the parents to feed their kids at the right time. So what should the parents do…?
Don’t worry – your child will not starve herself! You should keep offering a variety of good or new foods with different recipes without pressurizing the kid to eat.
It is always good to plan a family meal, instead of feeding the kid while your kid is walking around, playing or watching television.
The meal should always be served from distractions like the television or computer.
Do not have toys at the dining table. You can make the food fun by arranging the food in eye-catching, creative ways (colourful sizes and shapes) which kids can recognize.
You can also try serving unfamiliar foods, or flavours (sour and bitter or sweet and salty), is a great combination for the taste buds.
Time is also important, kids should get enough time to eat the meal.
10 Best vitamin-rich recipes kids will love to eat….
1. Fruits bars: Blend, cashews, dates, raisins, and cocoa together to make ‘chocolate’ bars.
2. Coconut and mango Lollipops: Coconut water with coconut and frozen mango pieces are blended. Add 2 tablespoons of malt syrup and 2 – 3 big tablespoons of natural unsweetened yogurt. Pour into lollipops moulds.
3. Butterscotch candies: Boiling brown sugar and butter together in the water. Add some dried fruits.
4. Vegetables blended soups: Make vegetable (carrots, celery, cabbage, greens peas, beetroots) soup and add pulses like peas, chickpeas or lentils to bulk it up.
5. Tomato-based sauces: Homemade tomato-based sauces are the best in which you can blend vegetables along with tomatoes.
6. Sweet potato fries: Slice sweet potatoes into discs/sticks, toss with olive oil, and bake on a sheet until they are golden brown and crispy.
7. Serve fortified: cereal with fresh fruits like strawberries or mango to increase the iron absorption in the body.
8. Scrambled eggs – As egg yolks are a great source of iron
9. Quinoa soup – It is ideal iron-rich soups for vegetarians or kids who do not like meat.
10. Tofu Cube: Cut tofu into cubes and serve. Tofu is a good source of iron.
Sometimes it is seen that kids are picky food eaters and working parents are not having enough time to feed their child or he/she is suffering from chronic medical conditions such as asthma or digestive problems.
It is also seen that fussy eaters simply do not eat homemade food and eat a lot of fast food, convenience 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 best vitamins.
The pediatrician will recommend the best vitamin designed for your kid’s age group. Few of the multivitamin which is available in the market are as follows –
1. Children’s Multivitamins & Minerals:
The container contains 90 chewable multivitamins & mineral tablets which boost the immune system, protect cells from oxidative stress and maintain electrolyte balance.
It comes with Tutti frutti flavour. HealthAid has created the ideal supplement to ensure that your children are getting the best vitamins they need to stay healthy. Recommended for children age 2 and up.
2. Multivitamin and Mineral Gummy:
This is the best vitamin supplement which contains vitamin A, C, D, E, and zinc, and is for 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 vision, boost the immune system, and to have balanced mental health and energy.
Manufactured by Meadbery Pharmaceutical Company.
3. Activkids Brain Boosters:
1 choco bite daily helps to promote your kids’ healthy brain, improves concentration, energy, 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.
4. Multivitamin Alvitom Drops For Kids:
It is a great tasting multivitamin with an iron supplement in orange flavour for a picky eater.
It is the best vitamin which helps to support the kid’s healthy growth, development, increase energy levels, and boost the immune system.
This multivitamin container contains 30 ml drops. It delivers 100% of the daily intake of essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B, and D. Manufactured by Sherwell Biotech.
5. Kids Multi + 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 70 counts of delicious gummy. It is a blend of vitamins A, C, D, E, B’s and zinc.
Available in fruit punch and berry blast flavours. Distributed by Olly Public Benefit Corporation.
6. Smarty Pants:
Smarty Pants gummies include the best vitamins and essential nutrients required for your kid’s immune system, increase energy levels, healthy brain and memory.
It includes all-natural flavours derived from sources like spices, fruits, vegetables and herbs.
No addition of synthetic colours, artificial flavours or artificial sweeteners. It is available in 3 delicious flavours, strawberry banana, orange, and lemon.
It is a blend of vitamins D3 (for boosting immunity), vitamin K (for healthy bones), omega 3s, prebiotic fibre, beta carotene and the natural colours (organic turmeric, organic black, carrot juice and annatto).
This multivitamin container contains 90 counts of gummies.
7. Strong Calcium + K2:
This calcium drop contains 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.
8. EFA Blend for Children Eye & Brain Function:
These soft gels are enriched with vitamin E, Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and fish oil which is required for maintaining good vision, brain function and increase energy levels of the kids.
These soft gels can be cut open and the contents are mixed with food or drink. Container contains 120 soft gels.
Does Multivitamin have side effects?
The side effects of a multivitamin are usually temporary and may disappear as your body adjusts to this medicine.
Too much of vitamin C or zinc can cause nausea, loss of energy, dizziness, diarrhea, and stomach cramps.
Too much selenium could lead to loss of hair, gastrointestinal problem, fatigue, and mild nerve damage.