These tips for recognizing signs of nutritional deficiencies in children brought to you by SmartyPants Vitamins.
Kids don’t always want to eat the foods that are best for them. So as a parent, I’m definitely concerned about making sure my daughters get the vital nutrients they need for healthy growth and development.
Common Nutritional Deficiencies in Children & How to Spot Them
Nutritional deficiencies in children are much easier to remedy if caught early. That’s why I want to share four of the most common vitamins and minerals that your children might not get enough of without a little extra help.
Read to learn the symptoms to look for, as well as how to make sure your children get the nutrition they need to build strong bodies and healthy minds.
Note: This post contains ad links to products we love and use in our own home; read our full disclosure policy here.
Vitamin D Deficiency
Vitamin D is critical both in its own right, as well as for its role in the absorption of calcium. Both Vitamin D and calcium are vital in growing strong bones and teeth.
Our skin produces Vitamin D when exposed to natural sunlight. Children with little sun exposure or that live in higher latitudes might not get enough this way.
The earliest symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency are bone and muscle soreness. If the deficiency is not corrected, it can lead to serious skeletal deformities and a condition known as Rickets.
Iron Deficiency (Anemia)
Iron makes it possible for red blood cells to transport oxygen to our vital organs and throughout the body.
Symptoms of iron deficiency, or anemia, include: tiredness, pale skin (especially around the hands, nails, and eyelids), rapid heartbeat or a heart murmur, irritability, low appetite, dizziness, or even a condition known as pica (eating non-food items such as dirt).
B Vitamin Deficiency
The B Vitamins are needed in every area of our body and help maintain a strong immune system and optimal mental function.
Symptoms of B Vitamin deficiencies may include: nausea, abdominal pains, vomiting, loss of appetite, bad breath, indigestion and constipation. These symptoms are easily confused with other medical conditions. If you’re having trouble figuring out the cause of health issues, this could be the missing link.
Especially important for children, a diet that is lacking B vitamins can affect a child’s ability to learn and focus at school. (Source: The Recommended Daily at SmartyPants Vitamins)
Zinc is a trace mineral that is often forgotten in terms of discussions about nutritional needs. It usually takes a backseat to other well-known minerals like calcium and magnesium. However, zinc is equally important for growth and healthy development in children.
Symptoms of zinc deficiency include poor appetite, weight loss, and changes in the sense of taste and/or smell. If left unchecked, zinc deficiency can lead to stunted growth, poor wound healing, and hair loss.
A Healthy Diet Might Not be Enough
The first step in preventing nutritional deficiencies in children is to try to consume as many vitamin and mineral rich foods as possible. This list of child and baby-friendly foods that are high in nutrients has some great ideas to build your menu.
Our family strives to eat a balanced diet with lots of lean proteins and veggies. However, I would rather not take a chance with nutritional deficiencies in children. So I also give my girls a daily multivitamin to supplement their nutrient intake.
A serving of SmartyPants Kids Complete Multivitamins provides 11 vitamins and minerals that are crucial for development, as well as Omega 3 oils. I can rest a little easier knowing hat any gaps in my daughter’s diets are filled. This is especially reassuring while we’re in the “picky toddler” stage where my youngest tries to avoid vegetables!
My husband and I also take SmartyPants Vitamins: Women’s Complete for me, Men’s Complete for him. I love that Smarty Pants Vitamins are made with eco-friendly, non-GMO ingredients, and contain no artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. They’re also gluten free and dairy free, which is important for me and my sensitive tummy.
Oh, and I must mention that they taste fantastic! SmartyPants gummies are tangy and fruity, without the weird powdery aftertaste found in some multivitamins. My toddler is super picky and usually turns her nose at vitamins. However, she loves SmartyPants Vitamins — these are actually the only vitamins she’s ever eaten! I’m thrilled to find one she likes!
I’m excited to partner with SmartyPants Vitamins, because this is a product I truly love and use every day. (I’d tried them and shared with my family even before SmartyPants reached out to me for this collaboration).
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Disclaimer: This post is for entertainment purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any health condition. This is a sponsored post; all opinions are my own; I am not a medical professional, just a mom who is always looking for fun ways to keep our family healthy!