We all tend to believe that mostly women suffer from Iron deficiency, due to their menstrual blood loss. But it’s important to note that even children suffer from anemia, and not only the underdeveloped countries, but even the developing and developed countries also are having Iron deficiency prevalent among their children.
So, how do we know that our child is suffering from Iron deficiency ??
Here are few symptoms:
1. Your child may be irritable, cranky, unable to focus and distracted all the time. Rather than thinking that it’s the mind stability issues, it’s important to consult a Doctor to rule out the iron deficiency and supplement the child with required Iron supplements.
2. The child may be having weird cravings like, eating chalk pieces, licking soap or even mud eating habits. Rather than restricting your child away from these, note that, these cravings are due to mineral deficiencies and Iron deficiency can be one of them.
3. Your child may be drowsy and sleeping most of the time. Their activity levels may be diminished compared to other normal children and rather trying to teach discipline through introducing strict schedules, find out whether your child is having low Iron, with the help of your Pediatrician.
4. Excess sweating and slow hair growth may also be a common sign of low Iron levels.
5. Delayed growth and developmental issues are another important sign that you have to be aware of, which may be due to low Iron levels , usually caused by simple nutritional deficiencies.
First it’s always important to consult your Pediatrician, to rule out the exact cause of these health and behavioural issues in your Child.
Including certain foods animal foods like meat, eggs, chicken, and plant based foods like green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, pulses, fruits, potatoes, tomatoes etc.. can help in preventing Iron deficiency in children.
It’s important to note that plant based sources of Iron cannot be absorbed as such, rather require support of Vitamin C rich foods to increase the absorption of Iron, So, all the vegetarians out there, don’t forget to include a lot of oranges, lemons, tomatoes, capsicum, amla, apple, watermelon etc, for complete Iron absorption from all the leafy veggies and other Iron food sources.
NOTE: In case you are giving your child a lot milk , which is more than required than their daily requirement , you gotta know that excess calcium , tend to inhibit Iron absorption. So, reduce the milk quantity, to restore the Iron reserves in your Child.