Vitamin Series – How Vitamins K, C, E & A Affect Your Child’s Health

January is coming to a close (I can’t believe January is almost over!), so we will end our Vitamin Series with a run through of the vitamins we haven’t discussed yet. We have already covered Vitamin D, Calcium, and all of the B vitamins. (Calcium snuck its way into the Vitamin Series even though it is a mineral because it is very closely linked with Vitamin D).

As you may recall, the B vitamins are all water soluble. Vitamin C (also known as ascorbic acid) is also water soluble and acts as an antioxidant. In addition, vitamin C is important for wound healing. A deficiency in vitamin C, results in a disease called scurvy.

  • Good sources of vitamin C are colorful fruits and veggies such as red peppers, broccoli and strawberries.

You may notice lots of fruit juices out in the market have added vitamin C, as a result deficiencies in this vitamin are rare in today’s world.

Vitamins can be either water soluble or they can be fat soluble. Vitamins D, E, K, and A are all fat soluble vitamins. These vitamins are absorbed into the GI tract with the help of fat. They are also easier to accumulate in the body vs. the water soluble vitamins. Vitamin E and Vitamin A are both useful antioxidants. Vitamin A also plays an important role in eye sight.

  • Good sources of vitamin A are broccoli, carrots and most fruits or vegetables that are orange or yellow in color.
  • Good vitamin E sources are asparagus, avocado and eggs.

Lastly, we will discuss Vitamin K (also known as phylloquinone). This vitamin is interesting because it helps for wound clotting and coagulation. Any scab you may get is a result of vitamin K at work! It is rare to be deficient in this nutrient, unless there is significant damage to your intestine.

  • Good sources of vitamin K are leafy green vegetables.

When a child is on a restricted diet due to allergies, ensuring they are getting adequate amounts of each nutrient can be tricky. This vitamin series was developed to help families understand these nutrients and find ways to ensure your little one is getting the amounts they need to thrive. If your little one is on a very restricted diet, it may help to look for nutritionally complete amino acid-based formulas, like Neocate Infant or Neocate Junior, that will ensure these vitamins (along with minerals and macronutrients) are being taken in adequate amounts.

Do you often find it hard to ensure your little one is getting all the vitamins he/she needs? What have you done to help this?

Christine Graham-Garo

Published: 01/26/2010
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