Child Health
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Child Health

A healthy balanced diet with appropriate proportions of nutrients is necessary for all individuals, particularly for kids.  Children require vitamins and minerals for growth and development. The five food groups can fulfill all the needs. However, if a child is picky or has erratic eating patterns or a family has limited dietary choices, then it might affect a child’s vitamin and mineral intake, and eventually their health and overall development. Vitamin and mineral supplements can help in fulfilling the nutritional gaps and even boost a child's growth. These supplements are made with natural ingredients to support the health of children.

 

Child Nutrition

You want your child to eat healthy foods, but do you know which nutrients are necessary and in what amounts? Here's a quick overview.

Information

Nutrition for kids is based on the same principles as nutrition for adults. Everyone needs the same types of nutrients — such as vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, protein and fat. Children, however, need different amounts of specific nutrients at different ages.

  • From age 1 through the beginning of adolescence.
  • Growth in childhood slower than infancy.
  • Weight gain about 5 pounds and grow 2-3 inches annually.
  • Three groups on the basis of age and development
    • Toddlers (Age 1-3 years)
    • Preschoolers (Age 4-5 years)
    • School children (Age 6-10 years)


Energy & Proteins RDAs for children

Age (y)        Kcal/kg      Kcal/day       Proteins g/kg      Proteins g/day

1-3              102            1300            1.2                      16

4-6              90              1800            1.1                      24

7-10            70              2000            1.0                      28

On average 1 year old child requires 1000-1300 Kcal/day. This energy requirement doubles by 10 years age.

Vitamins & Minerals

  • With cooperation of healthy child a well planned diet provide most nutrients except iron.
  • RDA for iron during childhood (1-3 years) is 7 mg.
  • RDA for iron during childhood (4-8 years) is 10 mg.
  • As iron is low source of iron, so much consumption of milk contribute to low iron intake. Milk should be limited to 3-4 cups which allows room for diet rich in iron like lean meats, legumes, fish, poultry and cereals etc.
  • A child diet may also be deficient in other micronutrients like zinc, vitamin D & E. Those children who are on low fat diets i.e. low fat dairy products suffer more.
  • Outside influences such as TV viewing, affect children preferences for low nutrient density foods.

Nutritional concerns of childhood

  • Hunger
  • Malnutrition, Micronutrients and PEM.
  • Deficiencies of vitamins A, D, Zinc, Iron and proteins.
  • These result in illnesses, stunted growth, limited development and in case of vitamin A deficiency possibly permanent blindness.

Adolescence

  • It is the time between the onset of puberty and adulthood.
  • Boys grow about 8 inches, gain about 45 pounds and increase their lean body mass.
  • Girls grow about 6 inches, gain about 35 pounds and increase their body fat.
  • Growth through adolescence is hormone driven. Growth spurts for girls begin between ages 10.5 and 11 years with a peak in the rate of growth at around age 12. For boys growth spurts usually begin between ages 12.5 and 13 and peak at around age 14. This period of maximal growth lasts about 2 years.
  • Adolescence is an uncomfortable time for the teen who is concerned with body image or body changes or athletic activities.
  • Low nutrient snacks are a large part of the diet and adequate amounts of fruits and vegetables are missing.
  • Factors that determine food selection and consumption include the desire to be healthy, fitness goals, amount of discretionary income, social practices and peers.

Nutrient Needs of Adolescence

  • Growth not age should be ultimate indicator of nutrient needs.
  • Energy needs are greater during adolescence than at any other time of life with exception of pregnancy & lactation.
  • Energy & Proteins RDAs

Males

Age (yrs)         Kcal/kg         Kcal/day         Proteins g/kg         Proteins gm/day

11-14              55                 2500              1.0                           45

15-18              45                 3000              0.9                           59

Females

Age (yrs) Kcal/kg Kcal/day Proteins g/kg Proteins gm/day

11-14 47 2200 1.0 46

15-18 40 2200 0.9 44

  • Vitamins & Minerals
  • Higher vitamins and minerals needs.
  • Three nutrients of importance i.e. vitamin A, iron and calcium.
  • AI for calcium 1300 mg/day, for iron is 11 mg/day (boys) and 15 mg/day (girls).
  • Improving fruit & vegetable intake will help in obtaining adequate vitamin A.

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