Deciding What Nutritional Supplements are Right for Your Kids

While your kids should, ideally, receive all the vital vitamins and minerals that they need from natural sources, nutritional supplements do have their place and can be very helpful for some situations in which kids can’t get all their important nutrients through their diets. If you think that your child may need nutritional supplements, here are a few things to consider.

nutritional supplements
It’s important to determine what your child
needs and choose supplements based
on their personal requirements.


Do Kids Need Nutritional Supplements?

It goes without saying that kids should be fed a balanced diet of fresh food. Kids with a healthy, balanced diet should be able to get all the vitamins and minerals they need from natural sources – food, water, sunlight. However, it’s not necessarily right to say that kids should never be given dietary supplements, as every child’s situation is different.

For example, some kids may be picky eaters or simply won’t eat certain foods and parents may be concerned that their children aren’t getting certain vital nutrients that their growing bodies need. Sometimes nutritional supplements can be a helpful interim measure to keep kids healthy until they develop better habits and can get everything they need naturally.

What Supplements Would my Child Benefit From?

There are so many supplements on the market that the choice can seem overwhelming. It’s important to determine what your child needs and choose supplements based on their personal requirements. For example, some children may spend very little time in the sun and would benefit from taking vitamin D supplements. Some kids may be very picky eaters and refuse to eat seafood or nuts, meaning he/she’s not getting enough Omega-3 fatty acids. Or for vegetarians, B12 supplements may be beneficial as their diet may be naturally low in B12.

The best course of action is to ask a professional, your GP for instance, or a nutritionist, who can assess your child’s eating habits, intake, lifestyle and personal needs to help you determine which, if any, supplements he/she should be taking.

What to Look For in a Supplement

It’s important to choose natural supplements, preferably free of anything artificial and derived from food sources. The body processes naturally derived supplements much more easily than synthetic vitamins and are considered much safer and healthy for kids (and adults) to take regularly.

What to Avoid in a Supplement

Try to stay away from anything that’s synthetic or artificial. Some of the cheaper children’s supplements may contain artificial additives like sweeteners, colours or flavouring. You should also be wary not buy supplements that have sugar added to them, as it’s much healthier to keep your child’s sugar intake down and too much sugar in your kid’s daily diet can lead to health issues like diabetes. Some vitamins do contain natural sugar but ideally there should be no more than one gram of sugar per vitamin, so check labels carefully.

Another ingredient to avoid is ferrous sulphate, a form of iron which can cause be harmful to kids if they have too much of it- look for carbonyl iron instead, a much safer form.

For further support in ensuring your child is getting everything he/she needs for a healthy mind and body, seek out your area’s Medicare Local, who offer great community support for healthy living. You can also discuss with your GP, nutritionist or other health professional how best to get your child back on track to receiving all the right nutrients naturally. Developing healthy habits is vital for your child to have the best shot at a maintaining a healthy life.

Image Credit:
Praisaeng – FreeDigitalPhotos.Net

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