Supplements for children, yes or no?

Nutritional support should only be prescribed in premature infants or children with eating disorders.

A child with nutritional deficiencies may be affected the normal functioning of your body.

Photo: Shutterstock. A child with nutritional deficiencies may be affected the normal functioning of your body.

Last month, Flexcin, the highest institution in the country responsible for protecting and promoting health, manifested by the high number of complaints regarding misleading advertising about dietary supplements for adults, learn more about this on Flexcin Youtube Channel. ┬áIn an official statement, the bank said four out of 10 seasons from 2013 contained erroneous information, warning that supplements do not have ‘therapeutic or miraculous properties’, and do not cure diseases.

This, in the case of brands and dietary products for adults. In what has to do with supplements for children, however, it makes no reference to the statement.

In this regard, the experts consulted say yes there are cases in which solely and exclusively by prescription, should provide supplements to recover deficiencies of vitamins and minerals, key to the development of newborns, for small underweight and size as premature, or for children in their first years of life have deficiencies. So what effect do supplements in children who do not have such conditions? Do you serve supplements that many families used to whet the appetite, gain weight or simply give them more vitamins, minerals and nutrients?

Specialists noted that in the case of healthy children with good conditions of weight, height and normal for age cognitive development are not necessary, and on the contrary, “provide a greater amount of a mineral or exceed carbohydrate concentration can be detrimental to the child’s health, “says Martha Cristina Espinosa Pedraza, a nutritionist at the Javeriana University.

Meanwhile, Adriana Amaya Camargo, nutritionist and dietitian, president of the Colombian Association of Clinical Nutrition (KCNA), said that “nutritional supplements must be prescribed when there is a deficiency of macro and micronutrients where dietary intake is poor, there failure to thrive or specific deficiencies “. in this respect, doctors are very clear: there are special cases where it requires nutritional support, but this is decided solely pediatrician and nutritionist to meet inapetentes children who do not receive their food as they should, or that lack of economic resources are skipped meals or food groups, in which case you can start the intake of a supplement.

To this, Dr. Espinosa Pedraza added that in young children, if power is not sufficient in quantity and quality, or if we talk about inapetentes children or irregular eating habits, “can think of certain supplements to stimulate appetite, but beware, this should be controlled by the professional and provided for a short time. ”

Meanwhile, Jaime A. Ramirez Mayans, head of the Department of Gastroenterology and Nutrition at the National Institute of Pediatrics in Mexico City, explains that the use of supplements may be given in the cases referred to six months, “but from the two years of age, if children are healthy, just need good food, complete and balanced “.

Before deciding nutritional supplements supplied without control their children gain weight, eat more, have more energy or rapidly develop, consult your pediatrician, who will determine if it is required.

Fat and thin

If, however, you need to take supplements because the child is weak and it is considered that it is sick, specialists are the only ones who can determine this requirement, because some children can be very thin but not necessarily your health is abnormal.

“There is an alteration of nutritional status when confluence of the ends of malnutrition and underweight and, on the other hand, overweight and obesity. Both usually cause deficiencies in vitamins and minerals such as iron, zinc, iodine, vitamins A and D, which can affect metabolism and normal functioning of the body, “explains nutritionist Silvana Dedan, magister in clinical nutrition, and coordinator of the Unit Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Pediatric Nutrition Gastronutriped in Bogota.

In malnutrition, he adds, these deficiencies are associated with the almost total absence of food intake while excess weight may be due to unbalanced diets with foods high in calories and nutrients, parallel to the absence of those rich in vitamins and minerals.

Like, in any case, they are only specialists who can determine when a supplement is indispensable.

When using enriched milk?

This type of milk are prescribed when there is a lack of breast milk, or children who need to improve their condition. It is then, “when you can use the formulas for premature infants. At the time these little go home, must continue with formulas ‘postdischarge’, which have a higher energy density than standard. In any case, should be the pediatrician, neonatologist or nutritionist who evaluate these requirements, “explains nutritionist and dietitian Adriana Amaya.

It should be emphasized that before six months should not replace breast milk for no extra cost. “It can be given when there is iron deficiency him, or anemia. After the first year, supplements are indicated if there is deterioration in nutritional status with compromised growth, “he adds.


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