Your child may not be meeting their nutritional requirements despite your hardest attempts to do so. Due to their increasingly stressful and hectic schedule, parents often fail to provide their children with a balanced diet, especially when kids are picky and fussy eaters. Supplementing your kid’s diet with children’s multivitamin is a step towards filling the gap in their nutrition. Let us understand more about how you can supplement your child’s diet with the best multivitamin for kids and fill their nutritional gap.
Over the last few decades, the nutritional value of various foods has taken a serious hit. The use of fertilizers, pesticides, and fungicides has caused a severe depletion in the content of micronutrients such as potassium, copper, and magnesium in the soil. As a result, it is likely that your child is not getting a healthy nutritional intake despite consuming a balanced diet.
Surveys have found that over 59% of toddlers, along with their mothers were deficient in one or the other nutrient, especially those like – potassium and zinc. About 70% of the children under the age of six were also observed to be suffering from anaemia – a condition caused by the deficiency of iron.
The average Indian diet often exceeds the nutritional recommendations for a lot of nutrients like carbohydrate, saturated fats, sodium and sugar, while lacking in essential nutrients like potassium, manganese and iron. So, while it may seem like your child is getting their daily share of nutrients, they are only consuming empty calories. Such a gap — called the ‘nutrition gap’ can cause a lot of health complications in the long run.
How Multivitamins are beneficial to your Child?
Adding the best multivitamin for kids to your child’s daily routine as a part of a balanced diet can do wonders for their growth and development. Some benefits are:
1. Boosts Energy – Toddlers often tire themselves out from engaging in a lot of activities. Multivitamins are rich in B-complex vitamins, which help in breaking down food into nutrients, and are a cleaner source of energy than sugars.
2. Improves Digestion – Multivitamins contain nutrients like zinc and phosphorus which regulate gut health and improve digestion by promoting the growth of intestinal flora.
3. Promotes Healthy Habits – Adults are just as prone to nutritional deficiencies as kids are. Consuming multivitamins on a daily basis at an early stage can develop into a very useful habit later in life — preventing various health complications.
4. Ensures Growth and Development – Multivitamins are a rich source of Vitamins A, D and E which are essential for the growth and development of bones and muscle fibre in children.
5. Improves Brain Power – Children whose diets were supplemented with multivitamins were recorded to have an improved learning capacity, cognitive recognition, and memory power.
6. Boosts Immune System – Children are often prone to falling sick due to a weak immune system. Multivitamins such as Vitamins C, D and E were actively linked with increasing the production of white blood cells – which help in fighting off any potential infections and boost the immune system.
It was also observed that a majority of Indians were suffering from at least one preventable chronic disease, which was often correlated to a lack of healthy eating habits and exercise. Conditions like Hypertension, Type-2 Diabetes. and Cardiovascular diseases were recorded to be preventable from an early age among those who had an adequate daily supply of nutrients by consuming the best multivitamin for kids.
Recommended Multivitamin Intake
The Food Nutrition Board of the Institute of Medicine has established a Dietary Reference Intake for various micronutrients and vitamins. Inadequate supply of micronutrients can cause severe disruptions in the growth and development of children. This was found to be a common occurrence in children who followed specific diets such as vegetarianism or veganism. In such cases, it is better to supplement their diet with the best multivitamin for kids in order to meet their nutritional requirements.
Given below is a chart that indicates the minimum recommended intake of multivitamins for kids:
|Nutrients||Recommended intake Per Day (RDA)|
|Vitamin A||400 mcg|
|Vitamin B6||600 mcg|
|Vitamin B12||1.2 mcg|
|Vitamin C||25 mcg|
|Vitamin D||15 mcg|
|Vitamin E||7 mcg|
|Vitamin K||55 mcg|
Studies have also recorded that our bodies are incapable of synthesizing certain micronutrients such as zinc and potassium on their own. Children who fail to maintain an adequate supply of these nutrients were recorded to experience certain symptoms, such as:
- Thinning of hair and nails, often with a brittle sensation.
- Minute lesions in and around the mouth, also known as canker sores.
- Discomfort or bleeding of gums.
- Poor night vision, with occasional white growth around the eyes.
- Loss of hair.
- Dandruff, combined with patches on the scalp.
- Reddish bumps on the skin often found with ingrown hair.
- Unpleasant sensation in the legs, often accompanied by the urge to keep moving them.
Sources of Vitamins
While children’s multivitamins are essential to meet your child’s nutritional requirements, they are only meant to be used as supplements. The majority of your kid’s nutrient intake must be sourced naturally. Here are a few good sources of the various nutrients required for the growth and development of your child:
Vitamin A – Carrots, sweet potatoes, and spinach
Vitamin B – Meat, eggs, and fish
Vitamin C – Lemons, tomatoes, and oranges
Vitamin D – Milk, cheese and yoghurts
Vitamin E – Seeds, nut, and vegetable oils
Vitamin K – Cabbage, eggs, and broccoli
Potassium – Grains, legumes, and fruits
Zinc – Meat, shellfish, and pulses
Iron – Red meat, poultry, and fortified foods
Manganese – Tea, whole grains and legumes
Consuming the best multivitamin for kids in combination with these food sources has been shown to bridge the nutritional gap in many children. While these multivitamins come in various fun colours and shapes, you must make sure that your child consumes these in moderation. Always check with a paediatrician before giving your child these supplements.