How to make sure your children get enough Vitamin C

How to make sure your children get enough Vitamin C

Author -  Vicki Martin, Nutritionist and Naturopath

Naturopath Vicki Martin explains why Vitamin C is important for your children, and how to make sure they get enough

Why Vitamin C is so important for children 

Sometimes called “the immunity vitamin”, Vitamin C is a vital nutrient for children. It helps to strengthen their immune systems, which can keep them from coming down with all kinds of common infections. It can also help to reduce their recovery time if they do catch a cold or flu.

Children’s white blood cells (an important part of their immune system) need Vitamin C to function normally and help them fight off bacterial / viral infections. Plus, they need Vitamin C for collagen – a key protein that helps them form healthy skin, ligaments, tendons, bones and teeth as they grow.

So how can you make sure your children are getting enough Vitamin C?

Luckily for parents, Vitamin C is plentiful in all the fruits that most kids love. Great sources include:

  • Oranges
  • Strawberries
  • Grapes
  • Kiwifruit
  • Melons
  • Pineapple are all great sources.

Even “simple” fruit like apples, pears, and bananas are rich in this important vitamin. But what happens if your children are picky eaters who don’t like fresh fruit?

Sneaky suggestions for amping up children’s Vitamin C intake

If you have difficulties getting your children to eat fresh fruit, try “sneaking” Vitamin C into their diets by:

  • Making them smoothies with fresh (or frozen) strawberries or blueberries - just blend chilled yogurt, milk/soymilk, berries, ice, and maybe just a teaspoon of honey
  • Slicing and dicing a selection of fruit on a tray 
  • Freezing pure fruit juice into ice cube trays, and then dropping the cubes into sparkling water for a refreshingly fizzy summer drink
  • Adding hot water to pure apple juice for a warming fruit-flavoured drink in winter
  • Chopping fresh raw fruit into a tinned fruit salad for an after-dinner snack
  • Cutting up carrots, celery, cauliflower, capsicum and other vegetables around a bowl of hummus for an afternoon treat