Diet plays an important role in body growth, including bone development. So, nutrients helping in bone development are important to height. As the important components of bones are calcium, phosphorus, and protein in bone marrow, kids should get these nutrients in proper amount for their age so they won’t have calcium deficiency.
- Vitamin D
Helps in calcium and phosphorus absorption from food. If the body lack vitamin D, it will lead it a decrease of calcium and phosphorus absorption in the digestive tract and decreased bone mass. Children with severe vitamin D deficiency may experience rickets, leading to short body and bending legs.
Vitamin D deficiency can be prevented by doing activities under sunlight. Sunlight will turn cholesterol in the body into vitamin D. Also, eating high-vitamin D foods like salmon, mackerel, cod liver oil, egg yolks, and milk can prevent vitamin D deficiency.
Eating food with enough protein and energy is important to bone growth. Children with protein energy malnutrition will have a height, weight, and bone density less than normal. So, the proper amount of protein is significant to bone development.
Zinc is one of the nutrients affecting bone formation and growth. Children with zinc deficiency will grow less, get bored of food, have hair fall, and have chronic eczema. Zinc is commonly found in meat, especially red meat, egg yolks, liver, butter, oysters.
Calcium is very important to bone mass and bone formation, especially in growing child and is more important to teens with growth spurt. Only 30 percent of the calcium intake can be absorbed, so children of each age should consume enough calcium to meet their daily requirements.
The foods that contain the high calcium and are best absorbed are milk and dairy products. Other high-calcium foods are dried shrimp, small fish with edible bones, tofu, high-calcium vegetables such as ivy gourd, water mimosa, Thai copperpod, agasta, and neem.
Children with calcium deficiency should consult with a doctor to estimate their daily calcium intakes and consider taking calcium supplement.
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