The endless advertisements and promotion of child supplements may have compelled you to think if you should get some vitamins for your children. We heard a lot about how vitamins and mineral tablets are good for our bodies. While this is undeniably true, most children get sufficient amounts of nutrients from eating a balanced diet without the need to consume additional supplements. Those fancy pills, flavored gummy bears, and other nutrients supplements you often see are usually not necessary for healthy children who are having regular, well-balanced meals.

Nevertheless, supplements can still beneficial to some children and facilitate proper growth and development – especially for those with eating problems and/or existing medical conditions. Read on to find out whether your child needs them. 

My Child Won’t Eat 

Your child seems to pick at everything you feed them. Although you are perfectly aware that vegetables and fruits are a must to include in a balanced diet, your child avoids them like a plague. We understand that it can be really frustrating when you just can’t get your child to eat what’s best for them. 

Random Fun Fact: did you know that carbonated sodas leach on vitamins and minerals from human bodies? Well, now you do!

As children grow up, they need enough nutrients like calcium and Vitamin D to optimize bone health. It is also found that iron, iodine, choline, vitamins, B6, B12 and D are crucial for brain development in early life. Hence, if your child is an extremely picky-eater, they may lack certain nutrients that are essential for healthy growth and development.

Special Diets

Due to religious beliefs, ethical values, or sustainability, some parents may follow special diets. This includes Vegans, Vegetarians, and Pescatarian diets. 

Avoiding certain food groups would also mean that some nutrients are excluded from your child’s meals. For example, a child on a vegan diet may lack vitamin B12, vitamin D, iron, calcium, and zinc if they don’t consume enough through fortified foods. 

However, with careful considerations, children with special diets can still get enough nutrients with properly-planned meals. If you find it hard to do so, it is important to speak with your child’s doctor and discuss how to optimize your child’s nutritional intake. 

Existing Medical Conditions

Existing, or pre-existing medical conditions such as Cancer, Epilepsy, Asthma, and even food allergies may be a reason for your child to take additional supplements. 

The condition itself, its treatment plan, and side effects could cause certain nutrient-deficiency, compromise the immune system, and affect food diets.

For instance, children who suffer from Epilepsy and are taking anti-seizure medications commonly lack Vitamin D. And a child who is undergoing Chemotherapy may have a compromised diet and appetite, apart from a weakened immune system.

Besides, some children may need to avoid certain foods intentionally due to allergic reactions. 

In such cases, certain vitamins and probiotics may be necessary to strengthen your child’s immunity and ensure that they are getting enough nutrients while abiding by medical plans. 

Children who are healthy and eat well-balanced diets usually do not require additional supplements. However, if you feel that your child may need them, it is important to consult your child’s doctor and discuss what kinds of vitamins are suitable or beneficial. 

When deciding on the product, always look out for reputable brands that are recommended by pediatricians and contain the appropriate dosages of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals for your child. 

Reference List:

  1. Cervoni, Barbie. (2020, February 3). How to Raise Kids on a Special Diet. Verywell Family.
  2. Cusick, Sarah E, and Michael K Georgieff. (2016, June 3). The Role of Nutrition in Brain Development: The Golden Opportunity of the “First 1000 Days”. The Journal of Pediatrics vol. 175 (2016): 16-21. doi:10.1016/j.jpeds.2016.05.013 
  3. Golden, Neville H et al. Optimizing bone health in children and adolescents. Pediatricsvol. 134,4 (2014): e1229-43. doi:10.1542/peds.2014-2173 
  4. He’s Too Picky… Does He Need Vitamins? (2018, March 15). ChildrensMD. 
  5. Iannelli, Vincent. Vitamins and Supplements for Children. (2020, July 13). Verywell Family.
  6. Streit, Lizzie. (2019, March 22). Vitamins for Kids: Do They Need Them (And Which Ones)? Healthline.
  7. Vitamins for Kids: Do Healthy Kids Need Supplements? WebMD.