Nutrients Young Children Need to Grow Strong

Vitamin C, calcium, and protein are essential nutrients that young children need to grow strong. As parents, it’s important to make sure your child is getting enough of these nutrients to support their growth and development.

Vitamin C

Young children need vitamin C for their immune system to function properly. It helps protect against infections and illnesses and aids in the healing process. Some good sources of vitamin C for children include oranges, kiwi fruit, strawberries, and bell peppers. It’s important to note that vitamin C is easily destroyed by heat, so it’s best to serve fruits and vegetables raw or lightly cooked. It is also important to note that vitamin C cannot be stored in the body, so it must be eaten every day. Vitamin C helps the body absorb iron from food and aids in the production of collagen for healthy bones and teeth. It is an antioxidant that can help reduce inflammation and damage caused by free radicals.


Young children require calcium to develop strong bones. It’s important for building strong bones and teeth and for proper muscle and nerve function. Some good sources of calcium for children include milk, cheese, yogurt, tofu, and leafy green vegetables. Keep in mind that chocolate milk comes with a lot of added sugars. It’s important to choose plain milk or a milk alternative that is fortified with calcium. Vitamin D helps to absorb calcium, so it’s also important to make sure children get enough vitamin D from fortified milk, egg yolks, fish, and some types of mushrooms. Calcium-rich snacks for kids include almonds, broccoli, hummus with pretzels or crackers, and cheese sticks. Encouraging children to eat calcium-rich foods is an important part of helping them meet their daily needs. 


Young children need protein to grow strong. It helps build and repair tissues in the body and is especially important for growing muscles and bones. Some good sources of protein for children include lean meats, fish, eggs, beans, and nuts. It’s important to offer a variety of protein sources to ensure your child is getting all the essential amino acids they need.

In addition to these nutrients, it’s important for young children to eat a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats. Avoid offering too many processed and sugary foods, as these can displace more nutrient-dense options and contribute to a less healthy overall diet. Parents can also consider offering a daily multivitamin to ensure their child is getting all the essential vitamins and minerals they need. However, it’s important to note that a multivitamin should never replace a healthy and balanced diet.

Offering a diverse range of foods that are rich in vitamin C, calcium, and protein is crucial for promoting your child’s growth and development. You can establish healthy eating habits that will benefit your child in the long term by reducing their consumption of processed and sugary foods. Through a combination of a balanced diet and regular physical activity, your child will be able to grow strong and healthy.

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Simon Greenberg

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