Poor Kids Missing Out on Multivitamins

Well-heeled kids take them, poor need them
By Kristina Loew,  Newser User
Posted Feb 5, 2009 6:45 AM CST
Centrum vitamins are offered for sale at a pharmacy in Chicago.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – Vitamin supplements can combat kids' dietary deficiencies, but tend to be taken by those who least need them, reports Time. A five-year study found that a third of US children take supplements—but those kids are much more likely to be white, with higher incomes, healthier diets, and better health insurance than children who don't take them.

More than half of infants born in the US are eligible for national feeding programs, but only for food—vitamins are not included. Health experts are re-thinking that approach, hoping to get more supplements to lower-income kids. Despite costs, “children who face poverty, food insecurity, and lack regular balanced meals have a high likelihood of benefiting from supplements," said one doctor.