Though as parents we try our best to ensure our children obtain the best possible diet, the reality is sometimes vitamin supplementation is required for optimal health. HEALTH speaks to Professor and Pediatrician Dr. Mahmoud Elsaye Attia Shamseldeen who explains more…
The Top Vitamins and Minerals for Kids
- Vitamin A promotes normal growth and development with tissue and bone repair. Good sources include milk, cheese, eggs, and yellow-to-orange vegetables such as carrots, yams, and squash.
- Vitamin Bs. The family of B vitamins — B2, B3, B6, and B12 — aid metabolism, energy production, and healthy circulatory and nervous systems. Good sources include meat, chicken, fish, nuts, eggs, milk, cheese, beans, and soybeans.
- Vitamin C promotes healthy muscles, connective tissue, and skin. Good sources include citrus fruit, strawberries, kiwi, and green vegetables.
- Vitamin D promotes bone and tooth formation and helps the body absorb calcium. Good sources include milk, dairy products, and fish oil. The best source of vitamin D is sunlight.
- Calcium helps build strong bones as a child grows. Good sources include milk, cheese, yogurt, tofu, and calciumfortified orange juice.
- Omega 3 helps with brain development. It has other key benefits, including: improving visual/cognitive acuity, enhances the treatment of ADHD and depression, as well as ensures an adequate Omega 3 (DHA) storage in adults.
Who Needs Vitamins
According to Dr. Shamseldeen, vitamins are required in small quantities especially for kids. He recommends a daily multivitamin or mineral supplement for the following children:
- Kids who aren’t eating regular, well-balanced meals made from fresh, whole foods.
- Finicky eaters who simply aren’t eating enough.
- Kids with chronic medical conditions such as asthma or digestive problems, especially if they’re taking medications.
- Particularly active kids who play physically demanding sports.
- Kids consuming an excess of fast foods, convenience foods, and processed foods.
- Kids on a vegetarian diet (they may need an iron supplement), a dairy-free diet (they may need a calcium supplement), or other restricted diet.
- Kids who drink too many carbonated sodas, which can leach vitamins and minerals from their bodies.
Article Credit –
Dr. Mahmoud Elsaye Attia Shamseldeen
Consultant and Professor – Pediatrics Department