Far from the days of a few basic chewable kids’ vitamins, parents today can provide their children with options specific to their individual needs. Whether we’re looking for the best vitamins for kids or teens, at Carlson we have a variety to choose from.
Although we try to ensure our children get all of the nutrients they need through a healthy diet, picky eaters and busy lifestyles can make this difficult, which is why supplementing with key kids' vitamins can be beneficial. Vitamin D3 is important for babies and kids, omega-3s are beneficial for all ages, amino acids can support young athletes, and a multivitamin can help fill any nutritional gaps.
When selecting nutritional supplements for kids, we should be sure to choose products that are specially formulated for their age group. The American Academy of Pediatrics has recommendations on certain vitamins, but not all of them. Be sure to consult your child’s pediatrician with any questions.
What types of vitamins should teens take?
A balanced diet is on the minds of very few teens. If our teenagers don't consume a balanced diet full of fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and other nutrient-dense foods, they should consider adding a multivitamin supplement to their diet. However, there are also some specific vitamins they should consider to get them off to a healthy start.
More than 95% of teenage boys and girls don’t get enough omega-3 fatty acids from their diets, which are shown to promote heart, brain, vision, joint, and immune health. A great source of omega-3s is fish oil, and Carlson has a great selection for all ages.
For teens that don’t eat much meat, fish, or eggs, vitamin B12 supplements can be beneficial. Many teens also do not get enough vitamin D3. Not only does it support bone health, but it also promotes healthy immune and muscle function.
Many teens also lack vitamins A, E, and K; iron; magnesium; zinc; and folate. Look for a multivitamin that contains all of these important vitamins and minerals.
What types of vitamins should children take?
Kids' vitamins and supplements should be free from additives like sugar. Every child’s nutritional needs vary, but there are a few specific nutrients that every child should get daily.
Calcium is essential for bone and teeth health. The amount children should receive depends on their age.
1-3 years old: 700 mg
4-8 years old: 1,000 mg
9+ years old: 1,300 mg
The most important B vitamin is B12. The amount children should receive depends on their age.
Infants: 0.5 mcg
Toddlers: 0.9 mcg
4-8 years old: 1.2 mcg
9-13 years old: 1.8 mcg
14+ years old: 2.4 (or 2.6 if pregnant)
Vitamin E is important for healthy immune system function, and children ages 1-3 need 9 IUs daily, 4-8 year olds need 10.4 IUs daily, and those that are 9-13 years old need around 16.4 IUs daily. Additionally, babies should receive at least 400 IUs (10 mcgs) of vitamin D3 daily, and children 600 IUs (15 mcgs). For even more immune system support, we may want to consider looking at multivitamins with zinc, vitamin D3, and vitamin C. Choline and the omega-3 DHA also help support brain health.