SSM Health nurse practitioner talks vitamins for kids

MADISON, Wis. — It’s quite common for adults to supplement their diet with extra vitamins, but the habit sometimes has parents asking if they should be doing the same for their children.

SSM Health Nurse Practitioner Melissa Anderson says that for most healthy kids, a well-balanced diet will provide needed nutrients, but says there are some reasons why a child would still need a vitamin.

“When it comes to vitamins, we truly promote that children eat a well-balanced diet to get most of the vitamins and minerals they need,” said Anderson. “A lot of foods in America, here, are fortified with vitamins. So, as long as your child is getting different sources from different foods, they should be well covered with their vitamins. However, there are instances where children should be taking vitamins, such as erratic eating behaviors following special diets such as vegan, or diets for certain health conditions.”

In the Upper Midwest, a common needed vitamin is Vitamin-D, which Anderson says most could receive from dairy, milk, and orange juice, but a multivitamin can also be helpful in providing the important nutrient.

She also says that in combination with a healthy diet, multivitamins should be safe for your child to take long term, but if you have any questions, a consultation with your child’s primary care provider is the best course of action.

Our time for kids: recipe for health team is asking what you want to hear about. Let us know what health topics you’re interested in, or share your family’s health story with us, online at ssmhealth.com/timeforkids.