Do you know that you can now ensure your child maintains a healthy and balanced weight by including fiber supplements in his/her diet? However, it is really important to know which of these supplements are a must in the early years for your child’s development.
It is a really difficult task to get children to eat all the fruits and vegetables you put on their plates. Children are fussy eaters and anything that is not sweet and mouth-savoring is hardly their favorite food. In such a situation, how can you ensure that your child gets sufficient fiber from his diet? Well, the answer to that is “fiber supplements”. More often than not, parents do not pay attention to this vital part of the food unless it becomes a painful experience for the child.
If your child does not get the daily amount of fiber necessary to ward off diseases, he may not only suffer now but also in the later years. Lack of fiber in the body causes irritable bowel movements, poor appetite, unhealthy weight gain/loss, high insulin levels, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes. If you notice your child being grumpy since few days, it is time for you to visit a pharmacy.
Fiber Supplements for Children
Fiber is an important part of the human diet. The body takes a longer time to process fiber, hence, it keeps the digestive system well-functioning. Apart from these supplements, some good high fiber foods for kids that should be made a part of their daily meals are probiotic food, oats, bran, legumes, granola, prunes, fruits, nuts, flaxseed and whole grain foods. A grumpy behavior and dullness is a sign that your child lacks much-needed fiber in his/her diet. If your child is not eating properly, it is not a wise move to feed him/her junk food. There are a number of supplements available in the healthcare market.
Some of these that have been tried, tested and suggested by concerned parents are:
A natural source of fiber is Psyllium husk that is one of the richest sources of fiber. It is a major ingredient in supplements such as Metamucil, Konsyl, Citruce and FiberChoice. Wheat Dextrin is derived from wheat starch and functions similarly to psyllium husk. It is easily absorbed into the blood and helps remove toxins from the body through fecal matter.
Wheat Dextrin is highly recommended for children who may have gluten intolerance. Benefiber is mostly made of wheat dextrin. You can even add whole psyllium husk or wheat dextrin to food, shakes, juices and even water instead of taking the supplements. However, children are generally more comfortable taking supplements that are absolutely tasteless. Another component found in Metamucil is Inulin. It is extracted from root vegetables and aids in digestion. As per the Institute of Medicine, a daily intake of 17 g to 25 g of fiber is recommended for children.
Since children are so picky with their food, they may not be thrilled with the idea of gulping down the supplements either. If your child is giving you such nightmares, here is an excellent solution to your problem, called fiber gummies! There are several brands of kid-friendly supplements available in the market that are formulated to suit the tastes of their little customers. These supplements are yummy and very effective. Many pharmaceutical companies are manufacturing these fiber gummies absolutely devoid of sugar and calories to make them a healthy choice of supplements. The part I love the most about these is that children can hardly tell that they are sugar-free. In fact, kids love them!
- Stool soiling is a sign that your child may need a more fibrous diet.
- Do not give high doses of supplements. It may cause flatulence.
- Always ensure that the diet is supplemented with adequate amount of liquids.
- Avoid mixing up supplements with multivitamins or other antibiotics.
- If other symptoms such as fever or vomiting accompany constipation or diarrhea, get your child checked up by a certified pediatrician.
Along with supplements, your child must also drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water in a day to keep the internal organs hydrated. If your child is not drinking enough water, he/she may become constipated for really long spells resulting in painful stomach cramps and without water, these supplements of fiber won’t give you the desired results. A person’s eating habits are majorly based on the kind of food he/she was served as a child.
While supplements are a good way to take care of your parental concerns, make sure your child also develops healthy food habits to prevent problems like obesity, cardiac problems and diabetes in adulthood. Firstly, you should never introduce fried and fatty foods in the early developmental years of a child’s life. In fact, it is really helpful to keep the diet as raw as possible. It is no secret that raw food is rich in fiber.
Although, fiber is essential for the growth of children, it is recommended that you first consult a pediatrician before introducing these supplements to your child’s diet. Some supplements may react with other antibiotics being administered to the child. It is also necessary to ascertain the correct dosage to be taken each day from the doctor.