Vitamin D is an important nutrient for people of all ages. You can get vitamin D from exposure to sunlight, which is helpful during the warm and sunny months. But people — especially babies — don't typically spend all that much time in direct sunlight, even in the warmer months. Because they're often shaded and probably don't yet take a daily multivitamin, vitamin D rich foods that are safe for babies can be an important component of their diet.
Vitamin D has always been important. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), it's a powerful, fat-soluble vitamin that helps boost calcium absorption, provides immune system support, promotes healthy cell growth, and helps reduce inflammation. Basically, it's essential. But it has gotten some more attention recently with the American Academy of Pediatrics noting the results of a recent study that found babies might not be getting enough vitamin D from their diet.
or infants, the AAP recommended daily liquid vitamin D supplements, particularly if they are breast-fed. But for babies who are a bit older, there are foods they can be fed that will help boost vitamin D intake. Adding the following baby-safe, vitamin D rich foods can mean healthier babies and healthier kids down the line.
If you're looking to up your baby's vitamin D intake and they're old enough for milk, vitamin D-fortified milk could be just what you're looking for. According to the NIH, nearly all milk sold in the U.S. is fortified with vitamin D. Milk is also extremely versatile. You can use instead of water in oatmeal or add a bit of chocolate syrup for something a little different.
Fortified yogurt is a good source of both vitamin D and calcium, according to Parents. Win-win. Additionally, Baby Center noted that many babies can begin to tolerate yogurt at about four to six months of age.
According to the Mayo Clinic, eggs are a good source of naturally occurring vitamin D. Babies can start eating egg yolks at around nine months, according to Parents. While egg yolk allergies aren't overly common, watch for any potential signs of allergy.
Many older babies and toddlers love snacking on ready-to-eat cereals. According to BabyCenter, vitamin D-fortified, ready-to-eat cereal can up your baby's intake of the essential vitamin.