Is Your Child Getting Enough Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is important for many things such as healthy teeth and bones, nervous system health, strengthening the immune system, and may improve lung and heart health. Vitamin D can easily be absorbed in the body through sunlight. In fact, your child can get all they need from 15-30 minutes of mid-day sun. If it's that easy, then why are some children deficient in vitamin D?
Unfortunately, sunscreen can reduce vitamin D production by 95-99%. Dr. Michael Levine, MD, Director of the Center for Bone Health at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia states, "We usually recommend that parents allow children to have 10 to 15 minutes of sun time before applying sunscreen. This allows them to have sufficient exposure of sunlight to meet their Vitamin D requirements" (Children's Hospital of Philadelphia).
Vitamin D can also be found in several foods, such as salmon, sardines, tuna, mackerel, shiitake mushrooms, and hard boiled eggs (milk and many cereals are also vitamin D fortified. Nope, not chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese, so this may also be a good time to work on varying your child's food repertoire LOL. If you do not have an adventurous eater, fear not, as most of the over-the-counter children's vitamins contain the 600 IU of vitamin D, which is the FDA daily allowance. *As always, please consult your pediatrician regarding the necessary requirements of vitamin D for your little one.
With the current quarantine situation, many children may be stuck indoors watching TV. Be sure to get them outside for their 30 minutes of vitamin D and fresh air. It's always more fun to play outside. The Our First Year backpack and Toddler Tote contain all the toys your little one needs to have some fun outside. They also contain the evidence-based activity cards so that you can have meaningful playtime with your child, while soaking up some of that vitamin D for your bone health as well.
Getting your daily dose of vitamin D is easy...it's all in the bag!