The UK Department of health recommends that all children between the age of 1 and 5 should take a vitamin supplement containing vitamin A, vitamin D and vitamin C, daily. This recommendation is mainly as a safe guard, as vitamin A and vitamin D are a little more difficult to get from a healthy balanced diet alone. Additionally, the limited access that toddlers have to the sun alongside changes in growth, their nutritional needs and their food likes and dislikes means that offering vitamin drops is a good safety net for your child’s nutrition. So if you are asking “Should My Fussy Toddler Be Taking A Nutrition Supplement?” then the answer is probably “Yes”!
If you’re concerned that your toddler is a fussy or a picky eater, it’s even more important to make sure that they are getting their vitamin drops to help boost their intake of vitamin A, vitamin D and vitamin C.
Vitamin Drops for Toddlers
Vitamin drops are the recommended form of supplementation for infants, toddlers and young children, as they are easy to administer (you can add a few drops onto their tongue or add them directly to cold foods such as cereals or milk), and they usually don’t contain any added sugars unlike some of the syrups and jelly vitamins that are available on the market.
There are many options for vitamin drops available, including the Healthy Start vitamin drops provided by the UK Government. These drops are free for families on Child Tax Credits or who qualify for Income-Based Jobseeker’s Allowance or Income-related Employment and Support Allowance. For families who don’t qualify for free healthy start vitamin drops, you can still buy them from some local authorities, pharmacies and supermarkets. For more information on where to get Healthy Start visit their website.
Vitamin Drops for Babies
On top of this, new vitamin D guidelines suggest that infants from 0-1 year of age, who are breastfeeding or mixed feeding should take a form of vitamin D supplement every day throughout the year. 8.5-10mcg is recommended for this age group. Children who are fully formula fed do not need a vitamin D supplement until they are having less than around 500 mls of formula a day.
Nutrient Recommendations for toddlers:
Healthy Start supplements contain the following:
- 233 micrograms of vitamin A
- 20 milligrams of vitamin C
- 7.5 micrograms of vitamin D3
So it’s a good idea to look for supplements that contain these amounts.
Children over 1 are recommended to have around 10 mcg of vitamin D, 400 mcg vitamin A and 30 mg vitamin C a day. The extra not provided by supplements should come directly from the food that your little one is eating.
So if you are still wondering “Should My Fussy Toddler Be Taking A Nutrition Supplement”, there are also other options, such as vitamin drops including Abidec or Dalivit or you can get fresh cow’s milk with added vitamin D and vitamin A in the form of Big Milk too. For any questions or for more advice on healthy eating for toddlers get in touch with Charlotte directly or have a read through her blog. Additionally, do take a look at the factsheets over at www.littlefoodie.org.