Signs Of Nutritional Deficiencies In Children

Nutrients are inevitable during the growing stages of kids. If they become nutrient deficient, it will lead to severe health complications. Parents should be aware of the signs and symptoms of nutrient deficiencies which are common among kids. This will equip them to take adequate precautionary steps.

1.Signs Of Vitamin D Deficiency



Vitamin D has an important role to play in strengthening bones, hence its deficiency is often reflected in kid’s bone health. Moreover, vitamin D controls the level of calcium and phosphate which are essential for bone strength.

The most common signs of vitamin D deficiency are skeletal deformities, such as bow legs, thick wrists, and ankles. Another medical condition associated with low vitamin D status is rickets which is characterized by delayed growth, weakness, and pain in the spine and legs. Short stature and dental deformities are other warnings to enhance your kid’s vitamin D level. If your kid finds it difficult to reach normal developmental milestones, look for his vitamin D level.


To overcome the deficiency, include foods such as tuna, milk and dietary supplements in your diet as they are good sources of vitamin D. And do let them play outside to get more of vitamin D from sunlight exposure, the biggest source of the vitamin.

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2.Signs Of Calcium Deficiency


Besides keeping your bones and teeth strong, calcium facilitates muscle and nerve function and helps in blood clotting mechanism. Consequently, insufficient calcium can have an adverse effect on your kid’s health.


The behavioral changes in a kid can be linked with shortage of calcium. If a child exhibits depression, memory loss, insomnia, muscle aches and decreased appetite, then he might be running short of calcium. Tingling hands and feet are another sign of a calcium deficit child. Another symptom of calcium deficiency is seizure as it affects the neurological functions of the body. Like vitamin deficiency, lack of calcium will also result in rickets and impaired growth.

In case your kid is showing these signs, incorporate calcium-rich dairy products, dark leafy greens and seafood in your family’s diet.


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3.Signs of Iodine Deficiency



Iodine has a significant role in the production of thyroid hormones thereby facilitating the functioning of thyroid gland. The thyroid hormones regulate vital body functions such as breathing, heart rate, and body temperature.

The most common symptom of iodine deficiency, therefore, is the enlargement of thyroid gland known as goiter. It appears as a growth in the neck region. Lack of iodine will also lead to hypothyroidism, a medical condition tied to the thyroid gland’s inability to produce essential hormones. Tiredness, sudden weight gain, muscle pain, constipation, dry skin and brittle nails are symptoms of hypothyroidism.


Using iodized salt in the diet is one way to increase iodine level. Cheese, eggs, soy milk, ice creams are other sources of iodine.

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4.Signs of Magnesium deficiency


Magnesium is an important mineral which is responsible for over 300 metabolic processes, thus a major factor in producing energy.

When a kid suffers from nausea, vomiting, weakness, and loss of appetite, the insufficient level of magnesium may be a reason for that. Muscle tensions, cramps, and numbness are also related to lack of magnesium. When your kid shows excessive agony and anxiety, his low magnesium level might be playing a role in his behavior. Teeth grinding and restlessness in kids can also be traced back to magnesium deficiency.

Nuts, seeds, fish, and whole grains are few magnesium rich foods which can compensate the deficiency.

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5. Signs of Zinc Deficiency


Zinc is vital for proper functioning of immune system. It has a role to play in cell growth and wound healing.

Zinc deficiency comes with poor immunity resulting frequent infections and slow growth. If the deficiency becomes more, it may cause hair loss, wounds that take time to heal, and poor skin conditions.

Some of the highest dietary sources of magnesium are beef, pork, lamb, nuts, whole grains, and legumes.

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Many of the nutrient deficiencies, if left unchecked, can have serious side effects. As soon as you suspect your kid showing signs of deficiencies, it is always better to get advise from your pediatrician.