Childrenfrom birth to three years need special attention and care. It is thusnecessary that they receive a proper combination of minerals. Obesityhas been an epidemic which seems to have no cure, but with the properlifestyle, we can beat it before it even sprouts. Thus, obesity inadults can be prevented if we develop proper nutritional habits inchildhood.
Ireviewed two articles. One article stresses nutrition as an essentialarea of interest for pediatricians as they facilitate healthydevelopment and growth of young children (Aldous,1999).Thus, the article reviews nutritional issues in children, age-relatedchanges in diet composition of calories, eating patterns, theintroduction of solid foods and clinically relevant issues related toiron, vitamin D, calcium, fluoride, vitamin K and phosphorus (Aldous,1999).Furthermore, it reviews practical approach to nutritional screening.
Theother article addresses the question of who should be responsible forthe child obesity through court precedents of various case laws. Thearticle is specifically addressed to parents as it points out thatchildren are in their primary care (Darwin,2008).Thus, they are responsible for their children’s health. Byaddressing this question, the article puts to rest on whoseresponsibility it is to provide proper nutrition to children in thefight against obesity(Darwin, 2008).
Theanalysis of archival data and the survey have been used in the twoarticles. The first article is based on already collected data aboutnutrition levels in breast, cow milk, and baby supplements (Aldous,1999).The second article also utilizes survey of court precedents onobesity in children (Darwin,2008).The first article is objective in nature as it utilizes scientificstatistical tools to provide information about the composition ofminerals, which is based on evidence. On the other hand, the secondarticle fails to address who is responsible when the cause of obesityresults from genes. Also, the court rulings are objective in naturethere is no standard measure for the outcome(Darwin, 2008).One court might blame a parent another might exonerate the sameperson.
FeedingPatterns in Infants
Whenfeeding infants, it is recommended that you continue giving themfoods with high fats throughout the infancy period to ensuresufficient intake of calories and other nutrients (Aldous,1999).Low-fat milk is not recommended byAmerican Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)until the age of 2 years. When an infant reaches two years, a gradualintake of a low-fat diet can be incorporated. On the issue of solidfoods, AAP recommends a delay of 4 to 6 months. Fomon states that,spooning a baby who lacks the knowledge to know whether he/she ishungry or not, increases the likelihood of the baby to have anovereating habit, thus a high prevalence of obesity in children andadult (Aldous,1999).Furthermore, when you deprive children calories, there is likelihoodthat you have reduced the chances of obesity in adults andadolescents. It is sensible to introduce puree until an infant learnsto swallow. AAP recommends that four tablespoons be given to infantas you introduce solid foods.
Calcium,Phosphorus, and Vitamin D
RecommendedDaily Allowances (RDAs) for calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus hasnot been altered since 1989. An infant can receive these mineralsfrom milk and any other dairy products (Aldous,1999).Artificial formulas have high contents of the required RDAs, butbabies who breast feed usually absorb these minerals efficiently thanthose who use formulas. 22 ounces of cow’s milk can provide RDAsfor magnesium, calcium, and phosphorus. On the other hand, vitamin Dis insufficient in breastfed infants (Aldous,1999).Thus, it is recommended that supplements of 300 to 400 IU/d beadministered in breastfed infants (Aldous,1999).
Infantsare at higher risk of iron deficiency, mostly those who are breastfedcompared to those given formula (Aldous,1999).By 4 to 6 months, some infants have already depleted their stores ofiron. Without supplements, these infants might develop biochemicalevidence of iron deficiency. Thus, AAP recommends that 1mg/kg/d ofiron supplements be given to children daily. Early use of cow’smilk results in fecal blood loss in infants thus resulting in loss ofiron and may be anemic in some. Cow’s milk can be supplemented byiron fortified milk-based formula. The previous AAP had recommendeduniversal screening for iron deficiency in infants between 9 to 12months but currently due to the low prevalence of iron deficiency,only selective screening for some communities is recommended (Aldous,1999).
Breastmilk has a low quantity of vitamin K. It is for that reason thatVitamin K prophylaxis has been used in hospitals. Before its use,0.25 to 1.7% children were affected by a classic hemorrhagic disease(Aldous,1999).AAP had previously recommended the administration of supplementsevery 5 to 7 days for breastfed infants with prolonged diarrhea, butit no longer does (Aldous,1999).For formula fed children, it is not necessary for them to getsupplements because they receive the recommended levels of vitamin K.Children with malabsorptive states should receive regular vitamin Ksupplement (Aldous,1999)s.
Fluorideis necessary to prevent tooth decay. It should be given to childrenfrom the age of 3 years to 6 at 0.25mg/d if the water supply containsless than 0.3 ppm of fluoride (Aldous,1999).
NutritionalScreening in Clinical Practice
Accordingto Zlotkin nutritional, screening should first begin by a generalassessment of one’s health for nutritional vulnerability(Aldous, 1999).Then you should determine the dietary intake of the patient inreference to regular food groups. After that, you should measure thepatient’s head circumference, height and weight then compare itwith past details and finally do a thorough physical examination. Ahealthy person is one that is considered to have a normal growthrate, eats substantial diet and has no nutrient loss.
Thus,if parents became responsible and fed their children necessary diet,it would be possible to eliminate obesity. Also, if the issue ofearly feeding of children which has a likelihood of causing obesityin adults and adolescents is prevented from childhood, it can helpprevent these cases. Furthermore, reduction of calories in infantshas been associated with low cases of obesity. Thus, we can preventthe spread of obesity at early stages if we provide proper nutritionto children.
Aldous, M. B.(1999). Nutritional issues for infants and toddlers. PediatricAnnals, 28(2),101-105. doi:10.3928/0090-4481-19990201-06
Darwin, A.(2008). Childhood obesity: Is it abuse? Children`sVoice, 24-27. Retrieved fromhttp://www.ellennotbohm.com/JulyAug08_Voice_ChildhoodObesity.pdf