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The Best Vitamins for a Teenage Boy

author image Jill Corleone, RDN, LD
Jill Corleone is a registered dietitian and health coach who has been writing and lecturing on diet and health for more than 15 years. Her work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Diabetes Self-Management and in the book "Noninvasive Mechanical Ventilation," edited by John R. Bach, M.D. Corleone holds a Bachelor of Science in nutrition.
The Best Vitamins for a Teenage Boy
Teen boys need to eat a healthy and balanced diet to get all their vitamin needs. Photo Credit: Thinkstock Images/Stockbyte/Getty Images

The teen years for a boy are marked by growth spurts, reproductive maturity and cognitive transformations. A teen boy needs all the vitamins to achieve full growth potential. A healthy diet that includes a variety of foods from all the food groups can help most teen boys get all the vitamins they need to support normal growth and development and is preferable to supplements, according to the Academy of Pediatrics. However, if your teen is skipping meals or you feel he's not eating a balanced diet, talk to his doctor about whether you should add a vitamin supplement to his daily regimen.

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Vitamins A and E

Vitamin A is an essential nutrient for normal growth, and vitamin E is an important antioxidant that protects cells from damage. Teen boys may not be getting enough vitamin A or E in their diet, according to the Linus Pauling Institute. They need 900 micrograms of vitamin A per day and 15 milligrams of vitamin E. Sweet potatoes, carrots and peaches as well as milk fortified with vitamin A are all good sources of vitamin A. Vegetable oils, leafy greens and nuts such as almonds can help your teen meet his vitamin E needs.

Vitamin D

If teens do not get enough vitamin D during puberty, they may not reach their full bone growth potential, according to the Linus Pauling Institute. While the body is able to manufacture vitamin D through sun exposure, if your teen uses sunblock or has limited sun time, manufacturing enough vitamin D may be difficult. The recommended dietary allowance for vitamin D for teenage boys is 600 international units per day. While fatty fish such as salmon are a naturally good source of vitamin D, most teen boys may have an easier time meeting their daily vitamin D needs with fortified foods such as milk, orange juice or soy milk.

Vitamin C

Teenage boys need adequate vitamin C for healthy teeth and bones and the formation of cartilage. Although information on vitamin C intake in teens is limited, some teen boys may not be getting enough, says the Linus Pauling Institute. Teen boys need 75 milligrams of vitamin C a day and can meet their needs by including foods such as oranges or orange juice, peppers, tomatoes and broccoli in their diet.

B Vitamins

The eight B vitamins help the body process food into energy. These vitamins are found in including leafy greens, whole grains, meats, beans and dairy products. As long as your teenager eats a variety of different foods, he should be able to get the Bs he needs for good health. However, if your teenage boy is on a strict vegan diet, meaning he does not eat any animal products such as meat or dairy, he may need to supplement his diet with vitamin B-12.

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