Definitive Guide: Best Vitamins For Kids
What Vitamins Do Kids Need?
According to the Mayo Clinic, healthy children who are growing well and don’t have physical, mental or developmental problems don’t usually need a multivitamin. Even if they seem to only eat carrots, turkey and cheese crackers, peanut butter sandwiches and diced chicken, children are likely getting enough vitamins and minerals.
Offering a multivitamin if your child doesn’t need it could overwhelm their system. Some vitamins can be toxic when taken in large doses. Others can interfere with your kid’s medications.
But a multivitamin can be useful for children with failure to thrive, developmental delays, specific chronic diseases, food allergies or intolerances and restrictive diets. Talk to your child’s doctor before administering a multivitamin. Make sure that it is designed for your child’s age so that you dose it properly. The best vitamins for kids do not contain nutrients that exceed 100 percent of the recommended daily value.
Sometimes called the sunshine vitamin, this nutrient is produced when the body is exposed to sunlight. Babies don’t get a lot of sun. Moreover, dark-skinned infants are at a greater risk of being deficient in D vitamin.
Although breastmilk is the best food to give to an infant until they’re ready for solids around 6 months of age, it may not provide enough D vitamin. But many pediatricians recommend that you supplement breastfed babies with this nutrient. Formula-fed infants may not need the supplement because infant formulas are fortified with this vitamin.
Doctors recommend that breastfed babies get 400 IU of vitamin D3 per day. The nutrient is available in liquid form, which is easy to administer using a dropper.
This omega-3 fatty acid, known as docosahexaenoic acid, is important for brain development. Although it’s not clear that this nutrient can make kids smarter or improve brain function, experts say that it makes sense to use it. This fatty acid does accumulate in the eyes, impacting vision development. It also influences neural development while the infant is in utero. Moreover, experts say that it is safe to give to kids.
Perhaps surprisingly, babies don’t need as much of this vitamin as adults do. But the nutrient still plays a vital role in sustaining a healthy immune system and producing collagen, a building block for tissues in the body.
This vitamin also improves iron absorption, which is important because many infants are iron deficient. Because the body can’t produce this vitamin on its own, children and adults need to get it from foods or supplements. Infant formula and breastmilk contain this vitamin.
Therefore, most infants don’t need C vitamin supplements. If they’re healthy and eating well, the majority of children get plenty of this nutrient from their diet. Overconsumption of this vitamin could cause stomach upset and kidney problems.
But some babies may be deficient. Talk to your child’s doctor if you suspect that this is the case. Babies with certain disorders, such as digestive dysfunction or neurodevelopmental conditions, may require C vitamin supplementation.
Also, pregnant and breastfeeding mothers should ensure that they’re getting enough of this vitamin in their diets. Plus, this vitamin makes an excellent skin treatment for women during pregnancy. It can plump your skin and combat dark spots that are caused by hyperpigmentation. C vitamin serum may also improve the acne that can crop up as your hormones change during and after pregnancy.
How to Administer the Best Vitamins for Kids
Babies and young children can’t swallow a pill. Although you may remember your parents crushing tablets and mixing them with juice to administer to you, doing that is not always the best idea. These days, you can find many of the best vitamins for kids in forms that are easy to consume.
Liquid Vitamins for Kids
Liquid vitamins are as easy to consume as breastmilk or formula. They’re ideal for people of any age. The body doesn’t have to break down a liquid as it might a gummy or soft gel. Therefore, liquid vitamins are readily absorbable.
Plus, liquids don’t pose a choking hazard, as capsules or gummies can. They’re perfect for babies, infants, and toddlers.
You can also disguise a liquid in a food or beverage. If your kiddo doesn’t like the taste of the vitamin, try mixing it with some juice. Certain liquid vitamins may be difficult to dose. Look for a product that has measurements on the dropper and provides adequate directions for administration.
Gummy Vitamins for Kids
Most picky kids love gummy vitamins. The fact that they taste like candy makes gummy vitamins enticing. But they’re not suitable for infants or young children that may have a hard time chewing and swallowing them.
Some parents don’t love the fact that gummy vitamins contain sugar. But, as Mary Poppins put it, a spoonful of sugar can help the medicine go down. Some kids won’t take their vitamins in any other form.
Capsules and Tablets
Taste is not usually an issue with capsules and tablets. If your child has gotten to an age where they can swallow pills, they may prefer this quick and easy method of taking vitamins.
Some vitamin tablets for kids are chewable. These are easy to administer, but they could taste chalky.
At Tastyganics, we offer a variety of wellness products, including organic kids vitamins and vegan kids vitamins. Our formulas also contain the nutrients that your little one needs to grow and thrive.
- Jennifer Akiyama