Dad Central / Parenting Blog

Product Review: Emergen-C Vitamins for Kids

It’d be fantastic if children got 100% of the required vitamins and minerals from natural sources. It’d be wonderful if the adults in their life had and took the time to shop for fresh fruits and veggies, and to prepare school lunches instead of relying on plastic-wrapped trash like Lunchables. It’d be outstanding too if families sat down together for mealtimes and conversed.

Because some, if not all, of these ideal scenarios fail to occur in many American households for a variety of legitimate and illegitimate reasons, there exists products like the new Emergen-C vitamin supplements to help our children grow up healthy.

There is a trade off though, in the form of artificial sweetness – not a ton, but some. Yeah, those strawberries are sweet too but it’s different. Surely you know that…right?

There are other issues to consider before introducing a supplement such as Emergen-C Kids (I simply won’t use the ‘Z’) into your child’s daily routine too.  First is the fear of excess vitamin intake.  I know, this is pretty much the exact opposite of what I say above, but too much of a good thing ain’t a good thing, ya know.  While a lot of C should be fine since the body cannot store it, over-consumption of certain vitamins (hello A, D, and E!) can lead to health problems.  You gotta check dosages while also examining what your kiddos eat and drink throughout a normal day.  Put it all together to see what they are getting too much and too little of.  Yeah, there’s some work involved in doing this right.  Welcome to parenthood.

One more thing, and it’s something that has become pervasive in our consumer culture and in the way certain health products are marketed: the selling point of replacing electrolytes.  Unless your darling child is in the midst of Olympic training, they likely aren’t sweating enough to justify or require such replacement.  Plus, many of the foods they are already consuming contain enough electrolytes to adequately make them whole.  This is a good article for more information on this subject.

When I was first approached about the new Emergen-C Kids vitamins I was both curious and cautious.  I take my kids health and eating habits very seriously and while I was open to the idea of such a vitamin product for children, I was also dubious of its ingredients and its necessity for my daughters.   I gave the fruit punch version a chance and couldn’t finish even a diluted glass, finding it to have way too much Zing! for my taste – kind of like that of a carbonated beverage and it’s been years since I had one of those.  Both the Bear and the Mouse tried all the three flavors – Fruit Punch, Orange, Grape – dissolved in water (the standard deliver method into a body).  They were lukewarm to all of them, finding orange the most palatable, but were turned off by that same bite and fizzy feeling in their mouth.

After a quick analysis of their usual intake of food and beverage, we’ve decided not to give them Emergen-C on a regular basis.  Thanks to their steady balanced diet of fruit, vegetables, meats, and diary I know that they’re already getting what they need to grow all healthy and happy.  I recognize, without the slightest bit of pompousness, that our situation is only a dream for many American families.  My girls aren’t picky eaters; they love fruits and vegetables and try most everything I prepare or order out at restaurants.  But the fact is that many children are simply NOT getting the vitamins and antioxidants they require on a daily basis.  For them, Emergen-C may be the ticket to a healthier childhood.

There are plenty of ways to cleverly introduce Emergen-C into your kids diet – some of them very fun.  Check out this orange creamcicle idea for kids and a bounty of other recipes for adults (Emergen-C guacamole? heck yeah.)

Take the pledge to raise healthy, active children at the Emergen-C Facebook Page and receive a free sample to try it for yourself.  For every pledge (and for every box of Emergen-C Kids sold), the company will donate a quarter to Vitamin Angels to help provide annual vitamin A supplements for youngsters in need.

*Note: I wrote this review while participating in a campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Emergen-C and received samples to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

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