Acquiring vitamin D naturally can be a challenge, and vitamin D deficiency can cause various issues to do with bone health. It’s especially a concern in children. That’s why supplementation is a good idea for children, but how do you pick the right kind of vitamin D supplement for kids? We’re here to help.
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Product recommendation summary
Let’s address the elephant in the room: COVID-19. This coronavirus has hit every corner of the world and impacted every life, there has never been anything like it before.
But what does it have to do with vitamin D?
Vitamin D deficiency and COVID-19
It appears that nothing other than social distancing can stop someone catching the virus, but there is a big mystery in how it impacts people: some die, and some are totally asymptomatic. Many are in the middle of that spectrum.
There is some scientific evidence that vitamin D deficiency is related to having a severe reaction, in particular the high mortality rate.
“We believe, that we can advise vitamin D supplementation to protect against SARS-CoV2 infection.” - Ilie et al.
Note that although there is a link to vitamin D deficiency and COVID-19, it is thus far mostly apparent in the elderly. Children overall seem to be spared the worst effects of COVID-19, at least medically speaking.
Could COVID-19 cause Vitamin D deficiency?
But what about addressing the inverse question: does COVID-19 lead to vitamin D deficiency? This goes to the question of whether the cure is worse than the disease.
Lockdown policies are hugely controversial and are different across jurisdictions, but in general it is understandable that everyone is spending more time at home, and so less time outside.
It’s not clear at this point if there is a measurable increase in vitamin D deficiency across the population, but of course the role of the sun in preventing vitamin D deficiency is well known, so it seems a reasonable area for concern.Learn more about vitamin D deficiency ≫
Regardless of the specific effects of COVID-19, vitamin D supplementation is safe and generally recommended.
Are vitamin D supplements really necessary
Yes, we’ve all heard that supplements aren’t necessary and we all just need to eat healthy. Maybe some people are lucky enough to consistently get the nutrition they need. But even for those lucky or hyper disciplined people, vitamin D can be a challenge. That’s because vitamin D occurs naturally in only a few food sources. That’s why vitamin D supplements are often consumed even by people who don’t take any other supplements.
That’s especially the case for children who may not yet have developed consistently healthy eating habits.
Breastfeeding is one of the best things any baby can get. However, it’s important to bear in mind that breast milk can only transfer nutrients from mother to baby. It’s critical to maintain mother’s nutrition during breastfeeding but vitamin D deficiency is very common in many people, and especially recently pregnant women who may not be getting out in the sun as much as usual.
Formula is typically fortified with vitamin D, and this is one of the only aspects in which formula may have something over breast milk. But that isn’t to say that formula is better than breast milk; there are many reasons why breast milk is better than formula, and if one adds vitamin D supplements on top of breastfeeding then there is no reason to opt for formula over breast milk.
We’ve shortlisted the three best childrens vitamin D supplements on the market.
This is a simple no fuss option that works great for all young children, even newborns. The dropper is built into the bottle itself so you never have anything to clean up. However, it does mean that you can only dispense it from the bottle itself, which is typically fine, but if you have any special needs then this may not be a practical solution for you.Pricing and more info ≫
400 IU is the right amount for children under 12 months, according to the CDC. For older kids, just increase the dosage.
Mommy’s Bliss Vitamin D Organic Drops
This interesting option includes Vitamin E, which the manufacturer claims improves the “freshness” of the product. The standout feature of this product is that dispensing is by way of a separate dropper.Pricing and more info ≫
Once again, 400 IU is the right amount for children under 12 months, according to the CDC. For older kids, just increase the dosage.
Vitafusion Organic D3 Gummy Vitamins
You can’t have a kids vitamins roundup without gummies! But there’s a good reason for that: before children are old enough that you can reason with them about healthy eating choices, your job as a parent is just to get nutrition into them somehow. Gummies are viable, safe, and often stress-free way to get vitamins into fussy toddlers, and this option from Vitafusion provides a big dose of Vitamin D - 2000 IU - that your toddler will benefit from.Pricing and more info ≫
Of course, this isn’t a safe option for babies, since they won’t be ably to chew a gummy. We hope we didn’t have to clarify that?
Our bottom line recommendation
Vitamin D supplementation is a good idea for everyone, and children are not exempt - not even newborns! Our recommendations are as follows:
First, look at Baby Ddrops 400 IU; it’s a simple solution that will work well for newborns or older children.
If you really prefer having a separate dropper then Mommy’s Bliss Vitamin D Organic Drops are the way to go.
For a fussy toddler who refuses to take drops, Vitafusion Organic D3 Gummy Vitamins are worth a try. Heck if your child doesn’t want them you can take them because they taste great!
Here at Intrepid Wellbeing we prefer to source information from high quality, academically rigorous sources. These are the references we used to develop this article:
- Ilie PC1, Stefanescu S2, Smith L3. The role of vitamin D in the prevention of coronavirus disease 2019 infection and mortality.. Aging Clin Exp Res. 2020 May 6. doi: 10.1007/s40520-020-01570-8. [Epub ahead of print]