Personalized Vitamin Packs for Children: What to Pack and Why
  /   Dr. John Snow

Personalized Vitamin Packs for Children: What to Pack and Why

We’re a lot more self conscious now than we used to be. If you have memories of growing up in the 80’s or 90’s, you probably remember how much junk food and soda was marketed to children. 

Everything featured a Ninja Turtle, or Batman, or Flintstone on the packaging. That hasn’t changed much. You’ll still see these same characters being used to promote things to children.

Although food companies have heard the growing calls of parents to fortify their products, reduce added sugars, and use healthier ingredient substitutions, progress in that arena has been limited. Most “exciting” foods that your child is eager to eat aren’t likely to provide what they need in their daily diet. 

Personalized vitamin packs can help to assure your child is getting everything they might need to promote their growth and health. You can’t always rely on a cartoon character mascot to have the best judgement when it comes to matters of your child’s health.

Is a Personalized Vitamin Pack Really Necessary?

Ideally, no one would ever need a personalized vitamin pack. We’d all be able to get what we needed through a balanced diet. There are many situations, including absorption issues, food allergies, or plant-based diets, where many sources of valuable vitamins, minerals, and nutrients are off the table. 

Everyone has different nutritional needs based on their circumstances and health. There may be times where your child needs more of a certain nutrient. Children in puberty who begin menstruating might need more iron. Children with dairy allergies or severe lactose intolerance may be deficient in calcium or iron, especially because they aren’t keen to eat the leafy greens that serve as an alternative source. 

A personalized vitamin pack is sometimes necessary to address these special needs in both children and adults. The best way to determine vitamin, mineral, and nutrient deficiencies is to discuss them with your child’s pediatrician. If your child isn’t getting enough of key vitamins or nutrients, personalized packs might be the answer. 

The Vitamin and Minerals Needs of Growing Children

Children need all the same vitamins and minerals that adults need. It’s important to assure that children are meeting their minimum recommended values for a whole host of key vitamins and nutrients, as deficiencies in childhood might have long term consequences. 

Children are still developing, and they will continue to develop until they reach their early twenties. A growing body has a wealth of demands. It needs to be properly nourished in order to function in a way that promotes this growth and development process all the way up until the point where it’s concluded. 

Some studies link vitamin and nutrient deficiencies to conditions like diabetes, rickets, obesity, iron deficiency anemia, heart disease, and osteoporosis.

Children can be especially prone to deficiencies in things like magnesium, iron, vitamin B12, folic acid, phosphorus, calcium, and vitamin D. Every single vitamin and mineral plays a role in the maintenance and sustenance of the human body. 

Key Vitamins and Minerals for the Health and Growth of Youngsters

Every vitamin and mineral is important for the health and growth of youngsters, but some are slightly more important than others. 

Children have a tendency to be picky eaters, and in addition to their highly selective preferences, they have very small stomachs. They need a reliable source of each vitamin and mineral to promote their health and growth. 

These are the vitamins that should be on the dinner table. If they aren’t, they should be in your child’s vitamin supplement. 

Vitamin A

Crucial to the development of bone, muscle, and tissue, vitamin A also helps to support ocular health, promoting good eyesight. 

Vitamin A is abundant in naturally yellow or orange foods like carrots. It’s also abundant in dairy and eggs. Children with lactose intolerance or egg allergies may have a tough time getting a sufficient amount of vitamin A through diet alone. 

Vitamin B Group

There are many B vitamins, and they all serve important functions in the body. Vitamin B12 helps the body to create natural energy and produce blood cells, two processes that are very important in children that are actively growing. 

Vitamin B12 naturally occurs in animal products, like red meat and dairy.

Thiamin, or vitamin B1, is used by the body to support the health of the nervous system, regulate hunger cues, and convert food to energy. Dairy, poultry, eggs, seafood, beans, peas, lentils, seeds, and nuts contain vitamin B1. 

Riboflavin, also known as vitamin B2, supports metabolic health and cell respiration. Eggs, dairy, and green vegetables are naturally high in riboflavin. Riboflavin is also commonly added to fortified cereals and bread. 

Vitamin B9, often referred to as folate or folic acid, helps the body to create ideal red blood cells. A folate deficiency can lead to red blood cells that are harder for the body to use due to their increased size, causing a condition known as folate deficiency anemia. 

Folate is found in broccoli and leafy greens, which are two foods that parents often have a hard time convincing picky children to eat.  

Calcium and Vitamin D

Calcium and vitamin D work together to support bone and tooth health. Your child’s bones have a lot of growing to do, and their permanent teeth are on the way. 

Calcium is most prominent in dairy. 

Children with a lactose intolerance, dairy allergies, or plant-based households may have difficulty obtaining enough calcium and vitamin D through their diet. Calcium is found in dark leafy greens, but a salad a day won’t provide enough calcium to properly support your child’s nutritional needs.

Manganese

Manganese is a trace mineral that promotes brain health and nervous system health. The body uses it to produce hormones, connective tissues, bone, and blood clotting factors. 

This trace mineral plays a crucial role in many of the body’s vital processes, and manganese deficiency can delay growth. 

Manganese is found in substantial amounts in shellfish and coffee. In addition, whole grains, fortified products, and leafy greens contain modest amounts of manganese. 

Zinc

Zinc is an essential mineral that the body uses for growth, DNA synthesis, tissue maintenance, and immune system function. Poultry, meat, and shellfish are excellent sources of zinc. In addition, soy products, legumes, nuts, and beans also contain small amounts of zinc. 

Providing Your Child With the Proper Vitamins

If your pediatrician agrees that your child would benefit from the use of a vitamin supplement, some due diligence is in order. You need to be sure that the supplement is easy for your child to use, and that it contains high-quality bioavailable sources of each necessary vitamin.

Be wary of gummy vitamins. They’re often loaded with sugar and junk, like artificial flavors. 

They create an association between health and candy, which may not be the best way to introduce your child to healthy habits. It’s better to use a vitamin that is better identifiable as a supplement, and talk to your child about the importance of following a healthy diet. 

You’ll also want to look at the serving size. The label will display recommended daily values contained within one dose of the vitamin. One dose might be as many as four pieces. 

Also, be careful with added sugar. Gummy vitamins often contain high amounts of sugar and the effect of giving your child four sugary vitamins is essentially the same as giving your child four pieces of candy. 

Hiya Makes it Easy

Hiya’s children’s multivitamin was formulated under the advice of pediatricians who noticed what vitamins and minerals are lacking in the average child’s diet. Our special chewable tablet is easy for children to use, and is naturally sweetened with monk fruit.

Our vitamins are vegan, gluten-free, and environmentally friendly. They’re a perfect fit for every family looking to raise healthy children, no matter what their preferred diet may be. 

Talk to your pediatrician about the needs of your child, and pick up a bottle of Hiya

Sources:

When Your Daughter's Period Comes Early | Unity Point Health

Growth & Development: 12-21 Years | Riley Children's Health

Nutritional deficiencies in the pediatric age group in a multicultural developed country, Israel | National Library of Medicine

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