Like the name suggests, cod liver oil is extracted from the liver of the fish that is predominantly found in the colder regions. The Atlantic and Pacific cod are the variants from which the oil can be taken. The oil is packed with vitamins A and D, along with omega-3-fatty acids. In the case of low immunity, cod liver oil for kids has proven to improve their stamina and immune power on a prolonged consumption.
WHY DOES IT WORK?
Cod Liver Nutritional Value
Cod Liver Oil is an effective remedy to a wide range of health problems. The high content of vitamin D helps in preventing rickets that gives way to soft bones. Improper mineralization of the bones will make the bones more vulnerable and soft. This has been observed in babies from the colder regions(1) since they don’t soak in enough sunlight to facilitate vitamin D conversion in the body. Cod Liver Oil for children is a healthy option to choose because of the nutritional factors of the oil.
Nutritional Value Per 4.5 grams of Cod Liver Oil
|Monounsaturated Fatty Acids and Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids||3.2 grams|
|Saturated Fatty Acids||1 gram|
|Vitamin A||4,450 IU|
|Vitamin D||440 IU|
Omega-3-fatty acids present in Cod Liver Oil are important polyunsaturated fats that reduce the risk of cardiac disorders.
Benefits of Cod Liver Oil
[Read: Fish Oil for Kids]
Cod liver oil for kids has proven to be an effective remedy to a wide range of health problems. The high content of vitamin D helps in preventing rickets that gives way to soft bones. Improper mineralization of the bones makes them vulnerable and soft. This has been seen in babies from the colder regions(2) since they don’t soak in enough sunlight to facilitate vitamin D conversion in the body.
Did You Know!
|One of the most ancient cures for rickets(3) was cod liver oil, making it an important mention in the traditional folklore.|
Cod liver oil benefits for children do not stop there. This oil helps in boosting the immunity of the young ones and keeps them away from unwanted diseases. The oil helps enhance brain performance and improves memory. Omega-3-fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties and also reduce the risk of type- 1 diabetes in children. The high amount of vitamin A makes it the ideal choice for eye health too.
It is advisable to use cod liver oil for toddlers as it can prevent gastric ulcers, strengthen the bones, increase blood circulation to the eyes, and protect against glaucoma. The oil also helps in balancing the hormones and can prevent depression.
There is nothing wrong with giving cod liver oil to babies. However, you must have pediatric guidance while you do it.
When Can You Administer Cod Liver Oil for Kids?
- The mother can consume cod liver oil during the lactation period which will benefit her baby. She can have up to 1 -2 teaspoons of the oil.
- Toddlers who have stopped breastfeeding can be given cod liver oil mixed with some maple syrup.
What’s the Right Dosage of Cod Liver Oil for Kids?
- In the case of infants, half a teaspoon of the oil is enough to get the benefits.
- In older children, you can give 1 teaspoon of the oil and increase the dose to 2 teaspoons after that.
- Check the vitamin D levels of your child before administering the oil. If they have good vitamin D levels, half to one teaspoon will suffice.
- Children will instantly despise the taste and fishy smell of the oil. In that case, you can mix the oil with a delicious smoothie or juice to mask the smell and taste.
- There are chewable cod liver tablets available in the market. Their artificial flavoring masks the taste so that kids don’t find them too repulsive.
[Read: Iron Rich Foods for Kids]
Word of Caution
- You have to be careful while you administer the dose to infants as there is a risk of choking, if not done properly.
- While cod liver oil helps in preventing gastric ulcers, overdoing it can lead to gastric disturbances in children like nausea, vomiting, headache, and heartburn.
- The smell of the oil is nauseating and can lead to vomiting.
- Cod liver oil has blood-thinning properties. Overusing it or taking it along with anticoagulant medication can lead to increased bleeding.
- Usually, chemicals are used to extract the oil, and if not processed properly, they can alter the vitamin content of the oil. Therefore, organic cod liver oil should be purchased.
Cod liver oil provides a suite of benefits that can keep your kids get back on the right track toward a healthy life. Administering it well in time and being careful with the dosage can ensure your children reap the health rewards of cod liver oil. However, before you incorporate the oil into your child’s diet, consult a medical professional.
1. What Cod Liver Oil Is Best Used for Babies?
Ans – There is no special or separate cod liver oil used for babies. However, the dose differs and must be administered with their baby formula or a syringe.
2. What Age Can Babies Take Cod Liver Oil?
Ans – You can start giving babies cod liver oil from the time you start their fluid diet. That will be during the first two months. However, you should consult your doctor first before incorporating it into the baby’s food.
3. Does Cod Liver Oil Help You Lose Weight?
Ans – Yes, the omega-3-fatty acids are known to reduce the bad cholesterol of the body along with the unsaturated fats. So, it is possible.