Thinking about giving your little nippers child's vitamins, but not sure if supplements are ultimately good for your kids?
Kids are often picky eaters, and this means they might not always get the well-rounded diet that is so important to their growth and development. Giving your kids child's vitamins is one way to ensure that any holes in their nutritional palate are provided for.
So what nutrients should you look for in child's vitamins? And at what age are supplements safe?
The important thing to remember about child's vitamins is that they are not meant to replace a healthy, balanced diet - only to support you kid's diet when deficiencies might occur. So supplements aren't a replacement for fruits and vegetables.
In the case of newborns, breast milk should provide them with all the nutrients they need - and this can be further ensured by the breast-feeding mother taking supplements herself so that her body will be nutritionally well stocked. If you don't breast-feed, be sure to select a doctor-recommended, nutritionally fortified formula.
For older kids, you can start introducing chewable supplement tablets. Check the age range on the bottle to be sure they're age appropriate. Some nutrients that are extremely important to a child's development, and therefore a crucial part of any supplement program include:
- Omega 3 fatty acids - these are found in oily fish, some fortified dairy products and flax seed products. They are extremely important for the development of the brain and nervous system.
- Vitamin C - This is important for a healthy immune system, and particularly important if your kids don't like fruits and vegetables.
- B Vitamins - These are involved in carbohydrate metabolism, so if you kids eat a lot of sweets and bread products they may have a deficiency.
If you're in doubt about the supplement you are considering for your children, consult your doctor. And remember - good health begins with a healthy, balanced diet.