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Does My Child Need a Vitamin Supplement?

Vitamin supplements

We all know that growing children need a range of different vitamins and minerals to keep them as healthy as possible. In an ideal world, this would be provided by feeding them the right foods. A balanced diet, where all the food groups are represented in the right quantities should provide more than enough nutrition for your youngster.

This is great news, except when you have a fussy eater or a child that follows a specialized diet. Your best course of action is to carefully consider what your child does eat and see whether or not there are essential vitamins missing.

You can watch them for the signs of deficiency as well. We recommend that you check out the infographic below, brought to you by, and use that to gauge whether or not your kids are showing signs of deficiency.

When You Should Supplement

If you and your family are vegans or vegetarians, you should be taking a vitamin B12 supplement at the very least. This is a vitamin that is only found in animal-based products so it could be lacking in a vegan diet.

Children that have a condition like celiac disease and who have to follow a limited diet, as a result, may also need a supplement.

If your little one is a fussy eater – and let’s be honest, all kids go through that phase, they may need extra help as well. This is also true if they tend to eat a lot of junk food, are on medications that interfere with the absorption of nutrients, etc.

When it comes to minerals, most of us are magnesium-deficient and should probably take a supplement to make sure we’re getting enough of this essential mineral. You can take a magnesium deficiency test online to determine if you should be taking it.

Supplements Are No Substitute for Healthy Eating

While supplements can help to provide vital nutrients, they should never become a replacement for good eating habits. Ensuring that your child eats foods as close to their natural state as possible, without a bunch of nasty additives, or without the food being processed to death is a great place to start.

It also pays to remember that there is such a thing as too much of a good thing here. Water-soluble vitamins, like vitamin B, will not cause problems if you are taking a higher dose. Any excess will simply be washed out.

Fat-soluble vitamins, like vitamin A, for example, are another matter entirely. These are stored in the liver and fat cells in the body, and so if your child is taking too much, there is a chance of these vitamins building up to toxic levels.

I’m Still Not Sure

That’s just fine – as parents, we’re only human. We can’t possibly know everything. We’d recommend talking the matter over with your child’s doctor. They can check for signs of deficiency for you, and also give you guidelines regarding diet.

If the doctor feels a supplement is necessary, they will be able to recommend a good one that works well for kids.

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