A Quick Pep Talk
If you’re reading this before the arrival of your little one, you are probably already being bombarded with advice about how to handle the remainder of your pregnancy, what decisions you should make with regard to labor, how to care for your child when you bring him/her home and what kind of day care is best when/if you go back to work. There isn’t a more prime target for unwanted advice than a pregnant mother.
I know that if you’re pregnant, you are being bombarded with the “breast is best” slogan from every mother you know who swore by breastfeeding (and probably your doctors and nurses too), but you’re probably also being told by friends who weren’t able to breastfeed that formula is just as good. Both are right. Breastfeeding is a great way to bond with your child and breast milk is great for them (not to mention a huge cost-saver), but you shouldn’t be harboring extra stress if you can’t breastfeed or don’t want to. You are (or will be) a great mom regardless of how you choose to feed your child--the most important thing is that you feed them.
Here's a Comparison Table on the Best Vitamins for Infants
No taste or odor
8 essential vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B and D
Naturally Sweetened Raspberry Grape Flavor
Free of flavor
9 essential vitamins including A, C, D, plus iron
Strong taste from Iron naturally but packed with organic-agave syrup and natural grape flavor
Breastmilk vs. Formula
This is the biggest factor in determining whether or not should use an infant multivitamin according to What to Expect, the most popular--and in my opinion, overwhelming--resource available to new moms/parents.
Breastmilk is the ideal food for newborns, but it lacks two very important nutrients: vitamin D and iron. Vitamin D (essential for building strong bones) and iron (helps the promotion of healthy blood cells and brain development, and helps prevent iron deficiency and iron deficiency anemia--which can leave you tired and short of breath due to lack of healthy red blood cells).
Most types of formula are fortified with Vitamin D, iron and a whole host of other nutrients. So if your little one is getting at least 32 ounces of formula a day, they are getting all the nutrients they need, so supplements aren’t really necessary until they start eating solid foods.
How much of these nutrients does my baby need?
What to Expect says that doctors recommend all breastfed babies get 400 IU per day of Vitamin D in supplement form (starting in the first few days of life).
Additionally, babies who were/are fully or partially breastfed should get 1 mg/kg oral iron supplements a day starting at four months until iron-rich solids like cereals, meat and green vegetables are introduced.
How should I get these nutrients into my little one?
These types of supplements are available over the counter and that is likely how your pediatrician would recommend you get them.
What are the best vitamins for infants?
We certainly suggest checking with your pediatrician before you give your infants multivitamins, but below are five vitamins for infants, we might suggest.
This vitamin d supplement for baby is a highly concentrated liquid that has no taste or odor and it provides a full 400IU dose of vitamin d and you can administer it by adding a drop of it to their food or drink (and we suggest you do for convenience sake).
These baby vitamin d drops don’t come with a dropper, but (according to the bottle) do contain 365 doses, so should last for at least a year if you give one drop per day as instructed.
This is a great-tasting, naturally sweetened, raspberry grape flavored, multivitamin with an iron supplement for infants and children younger than 4-years-old. It’s Kosher, vegan verified and free of sugar, alcohol, dye, soy, gluten, nuts, corn, eggs, lactose, dairy, parabens and artificial coloring.
What’s even better is it delivers 100% of the daily value of eight essential vitamins and minerals including vitamins A, B and D!
This vitamin D for babies is made with pure coconut oil (as opposed to a mixture of coconut oil and palm oil like the Carlson drops listed above). The dosage is just one drop applied where the baby feeds or onto a clean surface (such as a clean fingertip) and the supplement is tasteless and chemical free, just 400IU of pure vitamin D3.
It’s touted as being specifically designed for breastfed infants. Fantastically, the glass bottle design of these drops helps prevent contamination, they don’t need to be refrigerated and can be taken anywhere.
This 90-day supply of infant vitamin d supplement (for newborn infants to one-year-old) is made in the USA, contains only all natural vitamin D3 and fractionated coconut oil. It has no flavor, dye, color, sugar or preservatives; is natural, gluten free and non-GMO; and comes with an easy-to-use, traditional bulb dropper.
The product manufacturer does recommend washing the dropper after use with warm water (but only if you put the dropper directly into your baby’s mouth).
This supplement is for tiny tots two months and older. It has nine essential nutrients including 100% of the daily value of vitamins A, C, D, (that support good eyesight, bone health and the immune system). It also has iron (which helps carry oxygen on red blood cells throughout the body) and is made with an organic agave syrup-based formula, a grape flavor and no alcohol, dyes, gluten or preservatives.
It comes with a dispensing oral syringe. For infants older than two months, two milliliters per day can be administered directly into the mouth or mixed into food and/or drink.
So, you have several options when it comes to vitamins for infants. For sure, though, talk with your pediatrician or primary care physician before you go dosing your infant with toddlers. Likely, they will recommend it--especially if they’re breastfed or picky eaters--but you want to make sure you have the all clear before you start using anything.