Does your kid lack certain nutrients?

Follow our prime pointers to ensure your little one meets his nutritional needs so as to stay in the pink!

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Every parent’s goal is to raise a happy and healthy kid. Being free from nutritional problems ensures that your little one avoids suffering any immediate or long-term health issues, too.

If your kiddo has a nutritional deficiency, it’ll show up in different physical ways. Nature’s Farm’s nutritionists Cyrus Yeong and Yong Wai Chin list the symptoms of nutrient shortfall and relevant foods to add to your munchkin’s diet:

Iron deficiency       

PHYSICAL SIGNS Thin hair, pale skin all around his body and at the lips, sore or swollen tongue, ridged or spoon-shaped nails and bruises or skin is easily bruised.

SEVERE DEFICIENCY MAY LEAD TO… Anaemia. If your kewpie becomes anaemic, their blood is unable to supply their body with the necessary oxygen. It also increases your tot’s risk of suffering from infections and slows down his mental development.

EAT THESE FOODS Lean meats, fish, chicken, eggs and enriched or whole-grain products.

RECOMMENDED DIETARY ALLOWANCE 7mg per day.

Calcium deficiency

THE SIGNS Weak and brittle nails, tooth decay, insomnia and muscle cramps.

SEVERE DEFICIENCY MAY LEAD TO… Rickets. The disease will cause your child’s bones to soften, resulting in a change of shape. You’ll start to observe bowed legs, slowed growth and muscle pain and weakness. However, Yeong notes that calcium deficiency is rare in babies and newborns.

EAT THESE FOODS Milk and dairy products like cheese, yoghurt, orange juice, tofu, green leafy vegetables like kai lan, xiao bai cai.

RECOMMENDED DIETARY ALLOWANCE 500mg for children aged 1 to 3; 600mg for children between ages 4 and 6.

For children aged 4 years and above, 25 to 35 per cent of their daily calories should come from Omega-3 fatty foods.

Omega-3 fatty acid deficiency

THE SIGNS Dry flaky skin and dry hair and eyes, constant thirst.

SEVERE DEFICIENCY MAY LEAD TO… Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and other learning disabilities. Yeong cautions other long-term health issues like eczema and other allergies and constipation are also linked to a deficiency in Omega-3 fats.

EAT THESE FOODS “Fatty” fish like salmon, cod and mackerel, as well as walnuts

RECOMMENDED DIETARY ALLOWANCE There is no recommended dietary allowance for fatty acids, Yong points out, “Nutritionists typically recommend that a child around 1 to 3 years old consumes a fat intake that’s equivalent to 30 to 40 per cent of their daily energy or calorie limit.” For children aged 4 years and above, 25 to 35 per cent of their daily calories should come from Omega-3 fatty foods.

Vitamin A deficiency

THE SIGNS Dry eyes, skin and hair.

SEVERE DEFICIENCY MAY LEAD TO… Night blindness which can progressively lead to permanent blindness. Night blindness is a condition where your tot is unable to see at night or in low light conditions.

EAT THESE FOODS Eggs, dairy products, carrots, sweet potato, kale, spinach and broccoli.

RECOMMENDED DIETARY ALLOWANCE 250mcg for ages 1 to 3. 300mcg for ages 3 to 5.