What is the Best Multivitamin for Kids?
Responsible parenting is not a task for the faint at heart. The fast-paced lifestyle of the modern world means that we have less time to devote to home-cooked meals, making it more difficult to ensure that our children get the recommended amounts of fresh vitamins and minerals to grow strong and healthy.
A multivitamin can help fill the gap, so I’ve compiled a list to help you find the best multivitamin for kids.
Who Needs a Multivitamin
There is no denying that in a perfect world kids would get all of their needed vitamins and minerals from a well-rounded diet that includes lean meats, fresh fruits and vegetables.
Unfortunately, in modern society, it’s often unrealistic to assume kids are getting this on any sort of regular basis. Highly processed snack cakes often have to suffice as breakfast and a delivered pizza is dinner.
Many parents may not have a clue what was served at school for lunch or how much of any nutritious foods were thrown out uneaten. Some children develop picky eating habits and the battle to get the right food into your child can turn mealtime into an all-out war.
Highly active children partaking in sports and daily play need a boost in vitamins and minerals that are not found in a standard diet. Nearly every child could benefit greatly from the use of a good multivitamin. You can read more about the importance of vitamins and minerals to kids here.
Essential Vitamins for Kids
Helps build muscles and create healthy red blood cells. Low iron causes anemia and weakness.
The B group of vitamins help transfer foods to energy in the body. They improve nervous and circulatory systems.
This vitamin is important for a healthy immune system, skin, muscles and connective tissue growth.
This vitamin is critical in good bones, teeth and helps the body absorb calcium.
Correct growth in children requires the right amount of calcium for bone health and development.
How Multivitamins Work
The great thing about using a multivitamin is that once it is introduced to the body your job is done. The body understands its own nutritional needs and will break the product down and use each component over the course of the day. Establishing a regular routine of use is all you need to do. Here are some great tips on safe limits for vitamins and minerals.
How to Pick the Perfect Multivitamin
The market is overflowing with a multitude of kids’ multivitamin products. The different types can leave your head spinning and you can feel lost when tryingto pick the best multivitamin for kids. Below are a few considerations to give before making this all-important choice.
What are the advantages and benefits of a multivitamin for kids?
Beginning to narrow down your options starts with understanding the benefits and advantages offered for the given products. The ideal multivitamin for kids is easy to swallow, tastes good and contains all of the important nutrients listed above. Look out for the following points when evaluating your choice of vitamins:
Avoid a multivitamin that packs more than 100% of daily allowances as the excess will just be flushed out of the body and wasted.
Make sure it is for kids
Multivitamins nowadays are marketed for specific lifestyles, genders and age groups. Ensure that you choose one that focuses on the nutritional needs of children. Adult multivitamins are built to fill the needs of larger individuals that have very different daily requirements.
Read nutrition labels and ingredients lists
To get the best value for money, you need to find a multivitamin with the ingredients that are most beneficial for your child. The label should clearly list all of the vitamins and nutrients included, along with the percentage of the daily recommendation. Take the time to research anything you are not familiar with and always avoid products that are unwilling to share this information.
Get professional advice on additives for chronic conditions and deficiencies
Always consult with your pediatrician before starting your child on a multivitamin that has high amounts of ingredients such as iron or calcium. Having more than 100% of the daily requirements might be fine if your child has a chronic condition like asthma or a deficiency in iron, but the average child will not benefit from consuming more than the recommended daily amounts.
Does the product pass the look, smell and taste test?
If you have trouble with the shape, smell or taste of the multivitamin, so will your child. Research other parents’ experiences online to save yourself a lot of hassle when offering the product to your child.
What's the best way to use this product?
The toughest part to starting a multivitamin routine is remembering to take it everyday. Make it a habit to take it right after eating breakfast or dinner. Already having food in the stomach will reduce any incidences of stomach upset or gas. Never double up on a missed dose.
Are Multivitamins really necessary?
The debates will always rage when it comes to the necessity of adding a multivitamin to the diets of children. Most of the experts do agree that a sensible addition of a standard multivitamin is not harmful when used as recommended. They all agree at some level that poor diets and a lack of proper vitamin and mineral sources can create the need for supplements in some children. Here is an excellent video that outlines this clearly.
5 of the Most Popular Multivitamin Products
Rainbow Light Nutristars are flavorful and sweet chewable vitamins. The chalky texture may be an issue for some picky eaters but the price is a tremendous value for the long list of positive ingredients.
It does contain soy and GMOs, which may be a drawback if you avoid GMOs or your child has allergies. The vitamin A content is a bit high, but it also includes natural aids for better digestion. It is the most comprehensive multivitamin I’ve found and I think it will be well-received by most children.
- Cute star shape
- Good flavor and smell
- Kids love to take this product
- Well-rounded vitamin and mineral content
- Incredible pricing
- Too high in vitamin A
- The stars sometimes break
- Taste is a little chalky and gritty
- Contains GMO’s
- Contains soy
This product is a gummy multivitamin that is soft, easy to chew and has a fruit taste that kids will enjoy. They are small, raspberry flavored and don’t have the medicinal smell that you’ll notice with some other vitamins. Some report a bitter aftertaste. I am impressed with the lineup of good ingredients, vitamins and minerals, but the product still contains an undisclosed amount of sugar and corn syrup.
- Taste great
- Contains iron
- Cute bear shape
- No artificial preservatives, gluten, soy or dairy
- Soft to chew
- Less medicinal smell and flavor than some similar products
- Packed with vitamins and minerals
- Concentrated enough to use once per day
- One flavor only
- Product sticks to teeth
- Bitter aftertaste
- Harder consistency than an actual gummy candy
- Contains corn syrup
These Disney Princess Complete Multivitamins will appeal more to most girls than boys, which is unfortunate because they have a great candy-like taste. The only problem is that your kids will want to eat too many of them, so be sure to keep them hidden. These tablets are also lacking in magnesium so you’ll need to make sure you child gets this in his or her diet.
- Great smell and fruity flavor
- Based on Disney characters that kids love
- Kids remind you they need their multivitamin
- Colorful and attractive
- Kids view them as candy
- Contains corn syrup
- May not appeal to boys
- Melt and clump together in heat
- Cost is a little high
- Lacking magnesium
Flintstones vitamins have been around for a long time. I remember the chewables as a child. The gummy version is a bit tastier, but lacks the full range of vitamins and minerals. It is missing copper, iron, calcium, niacin, riboflavin and thiamin. This makes it much less than “complete” but the kids love the taste.
I have to agree that they taste very good. Unfortunately they are packed with corn syrup and all sorts of artificial flavorings and color dyes. The product tends to melt after a while and stick together. The price is an amazing value if you can get past the bad ingredients list.
- The smell is good
- Tastes very fruity and sweet
- Packaging is very eye-catching for kids
- Unbeatable price if on a tight budget
- Missing some key vitamins and minerals
- Lots of corn syrup
- Packed with unhealthy artificial coloring and flavoring ingredients
- Extremely heat sensitive
- Not the healthiest choice
Older children can handle swallowing these pills, but this product is not designed for younger children as chewing them is not an option. Many users reported a bitter taste and the vitamin and mineral profile is not ideal.
- Contains a wide range of vitamins and minerals
- Free of artificial colors, preservatives and allergy-causing substances
- Strong smell
- The taste is very bitter
- Majorly difficult to swallow
- Choking hazard for small children
- Some vitamins are over 100% of daily recommendations
- Many essential vitamins and minerals are at low levels
- Very expensive for the limited value
The Winning Multivitamin
In my opinion, the clear winner is the Rainbow Light Nutristars Multivitamin. This product is not only very well-rounded in vitamin profile but also includes powerful antioxidants and digestive aids. The price is also great for those on a budget.
A little research and trial and error will lead you to the best multivitamin for kids that meet your budget as well as nutrition concerns. Boosting the health and wellness of your children does not have to be a battle or overly-expensive. When you find one that works make it a daily routine and stick with it!