Vitamins and Minerals That are Essential for Children
Minerals and vitamins are essential for a child’s health. Vitamins and minerals are important for the growth of bones, the expansion of the body as a whole, the right flow of blood, and many other things.
All children should be taking the right number of vitamins and minerals for their bodies. However, it’s not always easy.
Today, many children do not get the recommended amounts of vitamins and minerals due to an unhealthy, unbalanced diet. Typically, this is the point at which taking vitamin and mineral supplements becomes necessary. It may not be the best solution or the most recommended thing to do, but when there are dietary deficiencies, it is often necessary.
Unfortunately, many parents don’t have enough time to prepare healthy, balanced foods at home, which are the best sources of essential vitamins and minerals. Sometimes kids are picky food-eaters and eating the right amount of healthy and nutritious foods becomes problematic.
Here are some of the most important sources of vitamins and minerals for children, what they do in the body, and how much they should get every day to stay healthy.
What are the Best Vitamins and Minerals for Children?
This mineral is considered the major nutrient for a child’s teeth and bone development. Lack of calcium can slow a child’s growth and make it more likely that they will have bone problems as adults. The best sources of calcium are dairy products, green leafy vegetables, and legumes.
The recommended Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) for calcium is as follows:
- 1 to 3 years (700 mg per day)
- 4 to 8 years (1000 mg per day)
- 9 to 18 years (1300 mg per day)
Iron makes bones stronger by helping red blood cells carry oxygen to all parts of the body. A lack of iron in children may lead to health issues such as weak immunity and poor memory. Some good sources of iron are lean red meat, dried beans, egg yolks, and oysters.
The recommended Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) of iron is as follows:
- 1 to 3 years (7 mg per day)
- 4 to 8 years (10 mg per day)
Iron should be taken at a rate of 11 mg/day for teenage boys and 15 mg/day for teenage girls who have started having periods. In addition, vegetarian children may need an iron supplement to balance their dietary needs.
This is one of the most significant sources of antioxidants for our body to keep our immune system strong. Vitamin C can help a child avoid many health issues, such as fatigue, diseases, or infection. Good sources of vitamin C include spinach, broccoli, and citrus fruits.
The recommended dietary reference intake (DRI) for vitamin C is as follows:
- 1 to 3 years (15 mg per day)
- 4 to 8 years (25 mg per day)
Vitamin D is important for building strong bones and teeth because it helps the body absorb calcium. Children with an insufficient intake of vitamin D are more prone to chronic diseases.
Some of the foods that are rich in vitamin D are salmon, sardines, egg yolks, and fortified milk. Another good source is adequate exposure to sunlight.
The recommended dietary reference intake (DRI) for vitamin D is as follows:
- 1 to 3 years (600 IU or 15 mcg per day)
- 4 to 8 years (600 IU or 15 mcg per day)
No child can get out of taking in the right amounts of vitamins and minerals. For the best health, each child needs to get their daily recommended amounts (DRIs) of vitamins and minerals. Parents have the responsibility to know what their children’s dietary needs are, so they can help support their development.
A healthy diet containing essential vitamins and minerals is the basis of good health. Children who keep their health in good shape at all ages will have a strong mental and physical base on which to grow and develop in the future.