What is Children's DHA?

Christina Edwards

Children's DHA is a dietary supplement available specifically for children. The main ingredient — docosahexaeonic acid, or DHA for short — is an omega-3 fatty acid. It plays a crucial role in the proper development of infants and children. There are a number of DHA and omega-3 supplements available of the market today, including children's DHA and DHA for pregnant women.

Pregnant women are advised to consume the omega-3 fatty acid DHA to promote healthy neurological development in their babies.
Pregnant women are advised to consume the omega-3 fatty acid DHA to promote healthy neurological development in their babies.

During a person's fetal stage and childhood, the brain grows at a swift rate. Because more than half of the brain is made up of fat containing DHA, it is extremely important to get enough of this fatty acid in these early years. It can be found in such foods as algae, vegetable oils, and organ meats. Fish is probably the most common source of DHA though, especially cold water species, such as salmon and herring.

Flaxseed oil is a good source of DHA.
Flaxseed oil is a good source of DHA.

Many nutritionists believe that most people, adults and children alike, do not ingest the proper amount of DHA from food. To make up for the lack of DHA in the typical diet, DHA supplements are often used. Children's DHA supplements can come in many forms, such as chewable tablets, gummies, or liquids. Many of these are made to taste like fruit to get the child to take them.

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When looking for a children's DHA supplement, experts agree that quality and safety are the most important factors. Because there are so many brands available, choosing the right one can seem like a daunting task to some, and researching each brand is important. Some scientists believe that the best children's DHA supplements are derived from flaxseed oil, or wild freshwater fish. These typically contain less contaminates than other brands.

Before an infant is even born, however, it is important that he get enough DHA. In addition to the number of other vitamins, DHA during pregnancy is now recommended by many obstetricians. This is because DHA during pregnancy is considered to be a crucial component in the initial formation of the fetal brain, nervous system, and eyes. DHA supplements are available for pregnant woman, and some brands of prenatal vitamins have DHA already in them.

Some studies suggest that fetuses and children who get an adequate amount of DHA generally have better mental function and better vision. It is believed by some scientists that individuals who do not get enough DHA will eventually have mental and vision problems. In the future, some hope that DHA can be used to help children with certain mental disorders, such as ADHD and autism.

Salmon is a good source of dietary DHA.
Salmon is a good source of dietary DHA.

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