The American Academy of Pediatrics has recently published new recommendations regarding vitamin D intake for infants, children and adolescents. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin involved in many processes in the body. Adequate intake not only prevents and treats rickets, but it is also implicated in the prevention of infections, cancer, osteoporosis and type 2 diabetes; it also helps de development of a healthy immune system.

Here are the new recommendations:

Any breastfeeding infant, regardless of whether he or she is being supplemented with formula, should be supplemented with 400 IU of vitamin D.

All formulas sold in the United States contain 400 IU of vitamin D per Liter. Any infant who receives less than 1 qt (or 1 L) of formula per day should get vitamin D supplement of 400 IU/day.

Older children and adolescents who do not obtain 400 IU of vitamin D per day through vit.D-fortified foods, such as fortified cereals and eggs, should receive a vitamin D supplement of 400 IU/day.

There are many over-the-counter preparations containing 400 IU of vitamin D, including infant drops, chewables and tablets. As your pharmacist which one is more appropriate for your child.

About the Author

Dr. Katalenas

Dr. Katalenas is a pediatrician and owner of The Pediatric Center of Round Rock and the author of the book "The Step Up Diet: From Scratch… The Quality, Quantity, and Timing Solution to Childhood Obesity", a guide to healthy cooking and eating for busy families.