Now lets be honest, parenting is not always a walk in the park, you constantly have to continue acquiring knowledge which can help make your job as a parent or guardian a tad bit easy. Kids just like adults come in different forms and as such you have to be prepared for every and anything. Story time, so I remember what life was like as a child, I was the second of 4 children at the time and for some reason the one with the most visits to the hospital (you could say I was the special child and you’d be right cause my dad paid extra attention to me in order to ensure I was fine) With the attention came some frustration on my dad’s part cause to be honest I wasn’t exactly helping as I rarely had any appetite. I never used to jump at the idea of food and for a child with that many visits to the hospital you’d think I would at least eat enough to ensure that I can take my drugs.
The reverse was the case and so I was either getting flogged to eat or I would get punished for refusing to eat which I found all too much, I mean, since when did it even become compulsory to eat food??? Anyway, not to digress, if you are a parent and struggle with getting your infants to eat, there’s absolutely no need to force them, you don’t want to end up frustrating yourself like my dad now do you? Nigeria is already hard as it is, don’t add to the stress. There is actually a solution that doesn’t require force but rather requires you simply incorporating foods and supplements rich in certain types of nutrients which are known to strengthen appetite levels in kids. Also note that the functions of these nutrients which I’ll be sharing are not limited to increasing only your child’s appetite but are also great for children’s overall development.
Vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, the B complex vitamins, Vitamins D, Zinc to mention but a few are known for their many benefits to the body but did you know they also serve as catalysts for inducing high appetite levels when needed, you probably didn’t. Not to worry we explore just how these nutrients can aid increased appetite in your child but before we do that, here are some reasons why your child may be experiencing Loss of appetite;
- Deficiency of nutrients
- Respiratory infections
- Bacteria or viral infections
- Digestive issues
- Slow growth rate
- Depression or psychological issues
If your child experiences a loss of appetite as a result of any of the aforementioned symptomps, not to worry, below are a few nutrients which can help them be on their way back to a healthy appetite.
Here’s what Vitamin D3 is known for, It is known to work hand in hand with Calcium in order to ensure proper bone density, i.e. it works to also keep your bones strong and dense. A deficiency of Vitamin D has been linked to loss of appetite in children so you may want to include foods rich in Vitamin D to your child’s meal plan. It aids in the proper digestion of foods your child eats making it a significant appetite stimulant.
Vitamin B-12 is almost always found in any vitamin supplement for kids and this is because it is a very important nutrient for your child but I bet you didn’t know that it is also a huge appetite stimulant. It is a water soluble vitamin which helps the body convert food into energy, this also means that if there are any cases of excessive intake of this vitamin, your child passes it out in his/her urine. Vitamin B12 aids in the metabolism of protein and fats in the child’s body making it an important vitamin to increase appetite.
Biotin also commonly known as Vitamin B7 is a B complex vitamin. Biotin as well as insulin are known to aid in the maintenance of healthy blood sugar levels in the body. This crucial functioning of the body is debilitated when your child is suffering from vitamin deficiency. And, if the child’s body is unable to convert all the sugar into energy then he or she is more likely to suffer from loss of appetite, so ultimately, a healthy dose of Vitamin B7 can boost appetite in infants.
If you are an avid reader of this blog then you will most likely have seen a lot of write ups talking about the many benefits of Vitamin C but for the benefit of new readers, Vitamin C is one of the toughest antioxidants which when taken correctly can do a lot for your body. It is an important vitamin for growth and development, a vitamin deficiency of vitamin C can slow down the development of your child’s physique. Vitamin C rich foods can easily be incorporated in your child’s meal to increase his/her appetite. Fruits such as oranges which stack up high levels of Vitamin C are known to rapidly increase ones appetite(you probably have heard this once or twice in your lifetime)
Zinc is a mineral that plays an important role in the body. It helps boost the immune system, enhances healing and promotes the production of proteins, as well as many other vital bodily functions. Zinc also helps in building appetite. Meals such as oats, meat, dates, ofada rice, periwinkle and a host of others are great options for improving the quantity of zinc in the body. Try incorporating these into your child’s meals and watch it work wonders to that child’s appetite.
According to Wikipedia Thiamine, also called Vitamin B1 is a vitamin found in food. It is also manufactured as a dietary supplement and medication. Food sources of thiamine include whole grains, legumes, and some meats and fish. Thiamine when incorporated with a child’s diet also acts as an appetite booster.
Vitamin B3 helps in the normal functioning of the human digestive system which in turn promotes a healthy appetite and glowing skin. This vitamin is important for many digestive tract functions, which includes the breakdown of fats, carbohydrates and alcohol. Loading up on niacin or vitamin B3 can be super-helpful and how!
Now just in case you are wondering why this conversation is necessary here is why, well a lack of appetite in young children can lead to physical and mental growth impairment. This is because reduced appetite can cause a child to not eat properly thereby causing them to miss out on essential vitamins and minerals which they should be getting from food and research has shown that deficiency of nutrients, especially micronutrients, is often experienced by toddlers.
Multivitamin supplements can also help in the fight to boost your child’s appetite as it contains in moderate quantities a host of these aforementioned vitamins and minerals. Also it comes as an effervescent tablet which can be dissolved with water and taken on the go, I’d say that’s even better, if your child won’t eat at least he/she won’t reject a nourishing cold calgovit raspberry flavoured glass of multivitamin goodness.