Baby Vitamins

Whether or not a baby needs extra vitamin supplements depends on a number of factors, whether the baby is breastfed or formula fed, whether or not he was full term and healthy and whether or not he his getting enough sunshine. If the baby was born prematurely or has some other type of illness, then a doctor should be consulted on vitamin supplementation and which type and how much of it is necessary. As the baby gets older his intake of solid food will determine his necessity for vitamin supplementation.

For many years the medical community has debated whether or not it’s important for a healthy and breastfed baby to take vitamin supplements. Currently it is recommended that a baby is given 400 IU of vitamin D everyday if he is exclusively breastfed or has less than 17 ounces of fortified formula a day. This is because the breast milk has a very small amount of vitamin D and although fortified formula has enough of it that is not the case if it is less then 17 ounces. Young babies are also less likely to get enough direct sunshine, which is of course one of the most popular vitamin d source!

Infant vitamins typically have 400 IU of vitamin D, which is the same amount found in 33 ounces of fortified formula. Babies can safely have about 1000 IU of vitamin d a day, so this amount is nothing to worry about. Once the baby is one year old and starts drinking whole milk and drinks at least 17 ounces of it a day, he will no longer need the supplements.

baby vitaminsAlways remember that a mother’s diet affects the quality of her breast milk. There for it is important to ensure that her nutrient level is not depleted. The mother should consider taking a multivitamin mineral supplement just to be on the safe side, especially if she is on a vegan diet, then she will need to take a reliable source of vitamin B12, which is something a vegan diet lacks. This way your toddlers vitamin need will be met.

Once your infant starts eating solid food, it might not be important for him to take baby vitamins if he eats nutritious food in the right amount. However if your baby is a finicky eater and you can not get him to eat enough for his age, then consult a doctor about giving him a multivitamin supplement. If your raising your baby to be a vegan then as mentioned already, this diet lacks vitamin B12 on it and there for you have to give the baby a reliable source of vitamin B12.

Another nutrient that your baby might not get enough of depending on what you feed him is omega 3 which is very important for babies. If you rarely eat fish in your household you might want to consider giving him some fish oil supplements but make sure you get some of the best fish oil supplement because one of the biggest fish oil benefits is how it helps your brain develop but heavy metals in fish oil can cause the opposite effect. Refined fish oil supplements or small fish (such as sardines) meals that do not have much mercury intake would be ideal.

Keep in mind that your baby might be getting more vitamins in his diet than you think. So consult a doctor before giving him any supplements that you think will fulfill all his need for baby vitamins which might already be being filled. If your baby is not yet born you might want to look at our page on the best prenatal vitamins.

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