Does Your Child Really Need a Multivitamin?

If your kid is a picky eater, you might worry that she isn’t getting enough of the nutrients that she needs to grow.

Manny Alvarez, MD, senior managing health editor of, reminds parents that many kid-friendly foods like breakfast cereals, milk, and orange juice are fortified with important nutrients such as vitamin D and calcium. Additionally, since children don’t need large amounts of vitamins and minerals, your child should be getting a sufficient amount from the healthy meals that you serve.

However, you may want to consider giving your child a multivitamin if he has an eating disorder, follows a vegan or vegetarian diet, has been diagnosed with failure to thrive, or doesn’t eat regular or well-balanced meals. These vitamins are also a good idea for kids with a chronic disease or food allergies.

Always check with your doctor before giving your child vitamins or supplements. They can interact with medications that your child may be taking, and it is possible to give your child too much of a good thing. Mega-doses of even healthy vitamin and mineral supplements can be toxic.

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