Breast milk is by far the most superior food for your baby but since 80% of women are Vitamin D deficient, they are unable to give the proper amount through their breast milk to their baby. Finding the best vitamin D drops for your breastfed baby will ensure them having adequate Vitamin D levels to support bone health and their immune system.
(this post may contain affiliate links)
What does Vitamin D do for breastfed babies?
Vitamin D plays an important role in the absorption of the minerals calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D is essential for normal bone development, because it stimulates the absorption of these two minerals from food in your intestines. It also helps maintain levels of parathyroid hormone (PTH) and calcitonin, which regulate blood calcium levels by helping you turn dietary calcium into bone.
Another role of vitamin D in your baby’s body is to boost their immune system and give them strong bones. You want to make sure your baby’s Vitamin D levels are sufficient and this can easily be done with a daily Vitamin D supplement.
The best Vitamin D drops for breastfed babies
There are many brands that make Vitamin D supplements for your baby. The best thing to do is to ask your doctor what brand or type of Vitamin D drops they recommend. Some doctors may prescribe vitamin D liquid drops right in their office but most will give you a recommendation.
Since breastfed babies are more prone to low levels of vitamin D than formula-fed infants, Vitamin D drops for your baby will be best in liquid drops and need to contain 400 IU per serving. This is what most doctors recommend (one drop is equal to 400 IU of vitamin d or 10mcg).
The best vitamin D drops will be best to use if its Vitamin D3 in oil form rather than any other type of synthesized form. That is because Vitamin D3 natural vitamins are best for your baby’s immune system and bone health. They won’t have high amounts of fillers, additives or preservatives.
My top picks are Baby Ddrops, Mommy’s Bliss Organic Drops, and Nordic Naturals.
Does Vitamin D transfer through breast milk?
Breast milk is one of the best sources of nutrients but very small amounts of vitamin d are transferred through breast milk. Since mothers themselves are deficient in Vitamin D, they are unable to transfer enough vitamin d to their baby. This is why supplementing your breast milk with the best Vitamin D drops for babies is very important.
Vitamin D drops will provide the best form of vitamins to your baby’s body and immune system. To ensure sufficient Vitamin D levels, it’s best to supplement with Vitamin D drops.
Are Vitamin D drops necessary for a breastfed baby?
Yes. Being deficient in Vitamin D could put babies at risk of bone fractures. It is even considered malpractice if your doctor doesn’t advise you to give your baby a vitamin d drop supplement. They are best to use even when your baby goes out in the sun since they need to be protected from direct sunlight for the first 6 months and limited amount of sun exposure the first year of life.
How do Vitamin D drops work for breastfeeding babies?
Using liquid vitamin d drops for breastfeeding babies would be the best option because they can help your baby develop strong bone structure and teeth. They are also very helpful in boosting their immune system.
Being deficient in this essential vitamin can put your baby at risk with neurodevelopmental disorders such as ADHD and Rheumatoid arthritis.
What puts babies at risk for Vitamin D deficiency?
- Sunscreen use – Primarily we get vitamin d from sun exposure but since we use sunscreen to prevent skin cancer as well as extended periods of time indoors, most are deficient in this vitamin.
- Skin tone – Darker skin tones also need up to 4 times more sun exposure to get adequate levels of vitamin d.
- Location – Living in the northern hemisphere as well as the winter months makes it hard to get adequate amounts of sun exposure.
- Pollution – Living in areas with higher pollution levels. This makes it hard to get the UVB rays that are needed to get Vitamin D.
How do Vitamin D Drops work?
Vitamin d drops for breastfeeding mothers and breastfed babies are the best vitamins that help the body absorb the best calcium from food. Calcium is very important in building strong bone structure and teeth as well as boosting their immune system.
Can babies get an adequate amount of Vitamin D from sun exposure?
It is hard for babies to get an adequate amount of sun exposure. Babies have very sensitive skin and should be protected from long sun exposure. If your baby is under 6 months of age, sun exposure should be avoided. If they are older than 6 months, they should only be getting short amounts of exposure during non peak hours. Direct sunlight for a long time can have other risk factors such as skin cancer.
Foods that have Vitamin D
You and your baby can find vitamin d in some solid foods however the AAP recommends that your baby still take daily supplements of vitamin d unless they are drinking at least 32 ounces of formula since it is fortified with the recommended amount of vitamin d. If they are exclusively or primarily breastfeeding then your baby needs 400 IU vitamin d each day.
- Egg yolks – One egg yoke typically contains 37 IU of vitamin d.
- Salmon – Depending on whether the salmon is wild caught or farmed, it can contain 250 – 1300 IU per 3.5 ounces.
- Cod Liver Oil – This contains about 448 IU per teaspoon. However it also contains a high amount of vitamin A so be sure not to take too much.
- Mushrooms – Like humans, mushrooms can synthesize UV light into vitamin d. Depending on whether they are wild mushrooms or have been treated with a ultraviolet light, mushrooms can contain 130 – 2300 IU per 3.5 ounces!
Fortified foods such as:
- Orange juice – Typically fortified to contain 100 IU per cup
- Soy milk – Soy milk is often fortified with Vitamin D since most sources come from animal products. 1 cup contains 107-117 IU per cup.
- Cows milk – this naturally contains 115-130 IU of Vitamin D per cup but it is also fortified to ensure people are getting an adequate amount. Whole milk should not be used to feed your baby until they are at least 12 months of age.
When to start giving your baby vitamin d drops
You can start supplementing within the first few days of life. It is very easy to supplement. (AAP)
How to use vitamin d drops for baby
You can drop a single drop of the Vitamin D drop right onto your breast right before breastfeeding so when they latch on, they will get the supplement.
Baby Vitamin D drops can also just be dropped onto your finger and you have your baby suck on your finger to get the supplement.
Another way is to directly drop it into your baby’s mouth or on their bottle or pacifier.
You only need to do this once a day.
Check out some of the best nursing chairs to make it easier on you while breastfeeding your baby.
What to look for when buying Vitamin D drops
When choosing a Vitamin D supplement for your baby, be sure it doesn’t have any of the following:
- Natural flavors: This is a catch all term that doesn’t really mean “natural”. It is usually to hide additives that they don’t want to disclose.
- Certain oils: Sunflower seed oil and palm oil are both commonly added to Vitamin D drops and can cause inflammation and can be hard to digest.
- Polysorbate 80: This is an emulsifier commonly added into many cosmetics as well as processed foods. There is an increased risk of HSR’s such as anaphylaxis shock and should be avoided if possible. (source)
All infant Vitamin D drops should have 400 international units (IU) per serving.
Related Article: The Best Probiotics You Should Be Taking While Breastfeeding
Which Vitamin D is best for babies?
Baby D Drops
I’ve personally used this with all of my babies. These are the best vitamin d drops and have even won mom’s choice awards. It’s very easy to use. It’s easy to get just one drop onto your breast or finger. I love that it only has two ingredients, Vitamin D and fractionated coconut oil. It’s tasteless so your baby won’t notice a difference when they are breastfeeding. Baby ddrops are affordable and last a long time. My doctor recommended this one to me and I’ve continued to use it with all 3 of my kids.
Mommy’s Bliss Organic D Drops
This is another great option that is organic. These organic drops have only two ingredients: organic MCT oil and Vitamin D. They are tasteless drops and have no artificial colors. It comes in a squeeze bottle so if you are having a hard time using the dropper, this is a great option.
This Vitamin D supplement is made organic with extra virgin olive oil. It is non-GMO and is third party tested to ensure that it is completely clean of any nasty fillers. Some moms say the dropper can be a little tricky but once you get the hang of it, it’s easy.
Culturelle Baby Grow & Thrive
This is a probiotic as well as a Vitamin D supplement. It contains Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG, Bifidobacterium animalis subsp.lactis and Vitamin D. You will have to refrigerate it once it is opened to preserve it. It is 5 drops to get 400 IU of Vitamin D per serving instead of the typical 1 drop so I recommend doing a couple drops on each breast before breastfeeding or putting it onto a spoon or in their bottle.
Zarbee’s contains just MCT oil and Vitamin D so it has very clean ingredients. It comes with a small syringe so you can easily drop the supplement into your baby’s mouth.
This supplement also only has MCT oil and Vitamin D. I love that it has only two clean ingredients. The dropper is more of a traditional dropper that is on the bottle and dispenses one drop at a time. I personally really prefer this style when breastfeeding. It makes it a lot easier to dispense onto the nipple before I nurse.
Wellements Organic D Drops
This is a great organic option that doesn’t have any fillers or dyes. It comes with an easy dropper in the glass bottle. They recommend storing it in the fridge to preserve it so fortunately it won’t take up a lot of fridge space! Only 1 drop is needed to get the recommended amount.
Breastfed infants need their daily dose of Vitamin D. This important vitamin improves your baby’s health and bone density. Be sure to talk to your health care provider about which one will work best for your family.
Need to find the best protein powder while you are breastfeeding? Be sure to read this to make sure yours is safe.