Vitamin D for Babies I

As a new parent, it's normal to be concerned about your baby getting everything she needs nutritionally. After all, babies grow at an astounding rate, doubling their birth weights within the first four to six months of life, and proper nutrition is key to proper growth.

Vitamin D is vital to every aspect of that growth because it helps the body absorb the calcium it needs to build strong bones.

he challenge is that vitamin D isn't found naturally in very many foods, and while it may seem counterintuitive, breast milk doesn't contain enough to meet your baby's needs.

Why do babies need vitamin D?

Babies need vitamin D because it's necessary for bone development, helping a baby's body absorb calcium and build strong bones.

Babies with extremely low levels of vitamin D are at risk of having weak bones, which can lead to issues like rickets (a childhood disorder in which the bones soften, making them vulnerable to fractures). Plus, building strong bones early on helps protect them later in life.

Breastfed babies are at higher risk of deficiency than formula-fed infants because while breast milk is the ideal food for a baby, it doesn't contain enough vitamin D to meet your little one's daily needs. That's why your pediatrician will normally prescribe a supplement in droplet form.

Breastfed babies need vitamin D drops the entire time they're breastfeeding, even if they're supplementing with formula, until they start getting enough vitamin D from solids. Talk to your pediatrician about when exactly to transition off the vitamin D supplements.

How much vitamin D do babies need?

Both newborns and older babies need 400 IUs of vitamin D a day until they're 1, after which they'll need 600 IU daily, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

It's important to make sure that your little one gets enough vitamin D because (and it bears repeating), it's needed to help the body absorb calcium. Vitamin D also boosts cell growth, neuromuscular function and immune function.

But you can overdo it. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) previously released a warning regarding the risk of infants overdosing from liquid vitamin D supplements, especially when the dropper contained more than the daily allowance.

Too much vitamin D can cause a number of side effects including nausea, vomiting, confusion, loss of appetite, excessive thirst, muscle and joint aches, constipation and frequent urination.

Post time: Nov-17-2022