Healthy & Beauty Tips


Children's Health : Nutrient Deficiency

Health Condition

Managing children's nutrition can be a bit of a juggling act. With many children overweight and getting less than their recommended dietary intake of essential vitamins and minerals, it's more important than ever to be aware of what kids need to start the year well.

While there is no simple test for identifying all nutrient deficiencies in children, fussy eaters and kids that often indulge in convenience/fast foods and snack foods would certainly be at risk. Your child's behavior may give you clues that they are not getting all they need.


It is hard to tell if your kids have nutrient deficiency. There are few symptoms to look out for include:

  • Any behavior that is out of character

  • Irritability

  • Sleep problems

  • Physical symptoms such as slow-healing wounds or frequent infections

  • Stunted growth


Is a fussy eater.
Doesn't eat regular or well-balanced meals.
Doesn't get enough vitamin D through diet or sunlight exposure.
Has a restrictive diet, such as a vegetarian or vegan diet.

Natural Therapies

Omega-3 essential fatty acids are important for the normal function of parts of the brain used for memory, learning and reasoning. Fish oil supplements are a source of omega-3s and may help to improve attention, sleep, and behaviour in children.

Zinc is essential for healthy growth and development and healthy immune system function. Zinc may assist with reducing hyperactivity, and inattention in children.

Iron is important for a healthy immune system, and to transport oxygen around the body. Low iron levels have been linked to problems with attention.

Multivitamin supplements help to ensure children are getting enough of the key nutrients they need which may be difficult to obtain from food.

Dietary & Lifestyle recommendations

Special tips for fussy eaters:

  • Be persistent – research has shown that you may need to offer a new food to your children up to 10 times before they will try it.

  • Be a good example – children learn to behave by watching their parents. Be a good example, eat a wide variety of healthy foods, and eat with your kids.

  • Establish a mealtime routine – try to eat meals at the same time each day.

  • Stay calm – try not to worry that your child might not be eating enough – kids will not starve themselves.

  • Make meals fun! Try cutting foods into fun shapes with cookie cutters. Serve vegetables with a favourite dip or sauce. Present a range of brightly coloured foods attractively on a plate, and let your little one choose what order to eat them in.

  • Be creative! If your child refuses eat vegetables – be sneaky and hide them in things like spaghetti sauce, meatballs, casseroles and soups.

  • Try not to yell, nag or threaten children around foods and eating. Make mealtimes enjoyable, and include the whole family.

  • Don’t use dessert, sweets/candies, chocolates or the promise of other treats as bribes to eat. If you need to resort to bribery – use non-food rewards

Other Information

Important considerations when choosing your child’s supplement:

  • Is it designed for your child's age group?

  • Does it contain artificial sweeteners, sugars or colours?

  • Is it based around the recommended daily intake (RDI) of vitamins and minerals?

  • Is it in a form your child will take easily (i.e. chewable)

  • Does it taste pleasant

For more information on products that are beneficial for kids health, please click on this link -

This health article is specially brought to you by our qualified naturopaths at Blackmores Malaysia.