GERBER, Germany — — — Food, vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids have been identified as the “essential elements” for a baby’s health, a report says.
The report, written by the German Institute of Nutrition and Dietetics (DIGI) says that a healthy diet needs to include:Calcium, vitamin D, iron, zinc and copper, the report says.
“For a healthy baby, the recommended intake of these essential elements is a minimum of 2,500 mg/day, but for infants who are not eating sufficient amounts of these elements, a higher daily intake may be appropriate,” said DIGI chief scientist Wolfgang Biederman.
He says the DIGIs report found that a daily intake of 1,400 mg of calcium and 400 mg of vitamin D was sufficient for healthy infants, while the recommended daily intake was 1,200 mg of zinc and 500 mg of copper.
According to the report, the DGI found that iron is especially important, because it supports the immune system and is needed to build muscle and bones.
The researchers also found that vitamin B12, which is found in foods such as cheese, eggs, and cereal, is needed for good brain development and healthy nerve function.
According the DIF, the optimal daily intake for children is 1,600 mg of iron, 1,800 mg of magnesium and 1,500 micrograms of zinc.
The DIGIC also found there is a link between high vitamin D levels and better cognitive development in children.
The institute says there is also a link to better bone health.
In addition, the study also showed that infants who had vitamin D3 supplements had better health outcomes than infants who did not get them.