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to Supplement or not to supplement?

Are Supplements Necessary for my Child?

When nutritional values for your children are not being met in your home, the next step is usually vitamin and mineral supplementation to enhance your child’s growth and development. As we all know, it can be incredibly difficult to make sure children are getting proper nutrients. Although most kids are naturally picky eaters, consideration of supplements is also due to medical conditions like asthma, anemia, or digestive issues that result in malabsorption. In most cases, giving children multivitamins is unnecessary and resorting to food as their optimum way to retain proper nutrients is the best route to go. Also, overdosing on vitamins and minerals is easy to do and can be harmful if the supplement is randomly chosen or just meant to "prevent" health issues. Similar to processed foods, supplemental vitamins and minerals go through rigorous processes to be in the form of a clear liquid or chalky chewable tablet. When it is necessary to give your children supplements, it’s very important to look at all the ingredients that are added to the tablets that aren’t vitamins. Ingredients like: sorbitol, carrageenan, aspartame, sucralose, and artificial colors and flavors to name a few! The bottom line is to prioritize getting a full range of vitamin support in the foods we consume, and looking to supplements for extra support if needed. Hypersensitivity and attention deficit disorders went from 6 to 10% in the past two decades.* Luckily with proper nutrition and safe supplemental use, children can improve their cognitive skills, as well as have less sick days from school and a lower risk for anemia.

Here we list some common conditions in children and suggested food sources and supplements to help combat them.

Hyperactivity is the state in which children are abnormally active. Common traits include frequent conversation/interruption, physically moves around and fidgets constantly, has trouble concentrating, and experiences high anxiety levels. Consuming gelatin, protein, and zinc improves the immune function, improves learning and concentration levels, and balances hormone levels.

Food Sources:

Gelatin-rich foods like bone broths,  roasts, collagen powders, and agar agar.

Protein-rich foods like eggs, nuts, soy, fish, beans, and lean meats.

Zinc-rich foods like cashews, legumes, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, chickpeas, and lentils.

Supplements:

Yummi Bears Echinacea+C+Zinc , Smarty Pants Mineral Complete and Sambucus Gummies

Disobedience/Irritability occurs in children who experience high and low mood swings or have mood disorders. Common traits include inconsistent eating habits, insomnia, low energy, poor concentration, and experience depression and anxiety. B Vitamins and Omega 3’s improves coordination and brain development, as well as reduces depression and anxiety levels. The pair also enhances energy levels which activity helps to balance hormones levels, soothing out children's moods to reduce disruptive behavior.

Food Sources:

B Vitamin-rich foods like fish, brown rice, spinach, mushrooms, eggs, and beef.

Omega 3 rich foods like flax seeds, walnuts, fish, tofu, brussels sprouts, and cauliflower.

Probiotic-rich foods like kimchi, yogurt, tempeh, kombucha, miso, and microalgae like spirulina.

Supplements:

Coromega Omega 3’s, Nordic Naturals Omega 3’s, Garden of Life Raw Probiotics

Frequent Colds/Flu are common in children with weakened immune systems. Supporting your child's body with a plentiful diet full of immune boosters and strengthening nutrients will avoid frequent illnesses. Aside from staying hydrated and well rested, consuming Vitamin C and B is crucial for immune support. They also help aid the digestive tract, balance hormone levels, and strengthen the cardiovascular system.

Food Sources:

Vitamin C rich foods like papaya, bell pepper, broccoli, brussels sprouts, and citrus fruits like pineapples.

B Vitamin-rich foods like fish, brown rice, spinach, mushrooms, eggs, and beef.

Supplements:

Garden of Life Vitamin Code, Paleovalley C Complex, Nutristart Multi Powder

Anemia is a condition in which the amount of red blood cells in the body is decreased, and can cause iron deficiency. The red blood cells are filled with hemoglobin, a protein that makes it possible to transport oxygen to other cells in the body. Iron deficiency makes children feel irritable, have mild weakness, become tired easily and needs frequent naps. Consuming high iron foods and/or iron supplements helps manage fatigue, immune strength, and boosts the red blood cell count.

Food Sources:

Iron-rich foods include soybeans, lentils, spinach, sesame seeds, olives, chard, and chickpeas.

Supplements:

NovaFerrum Liquid Iron, Pediakid Iron+B Complex, Zarbee’s Naturals Iron