What food to give baby with constipation

Are There Baby Foods that Help with Constipation?

While parenting brings many surprises, one of them is likely how much you’ll think about poop, or lack thereof, especially during that first year. But here you are worrying about your baby’s digestive tract and convinced that they’re constipated.

If you’ve recently introduced your baby to solid food, then your worries may be on target: solid foods can put a strain on your baby’s developing digestive tract and cause constipation. But there are things you can do to help!

Before you begin treating constipation you should determine if there is really an issue at all. So here’s the scoop on poop and how to tell if your worries are founded and your baby is constipated.

Breastfed babies

During the first few weeks, you’ll find yourself changing diapers with alarming regularity. Figure in every feed or so.

But don’t despair, because by the time your baby reaches 6 weeks old, they may have a bowel movement only once or twice a day. On the other hand, they may have one only every 7–10 days. (Yep, the frequency really can vary that much.)

The poop is yellow, soft, runny and sometimes lumpy and the smell isn’t unpleasant.

Formula-fed babies

A newborn, formula-fed baby typically poops up to five times a day. At about 6 to 8 weeks, this may decrease to around once a day.

Formula-fed babies have poop that is a camel to brown color with a thicker consistency, more like paste. Most likely, the less-than-aromatic smell means you’ll hermetically seal soiled diapers before you toss them into the garbage.

Signs that your baby is constipated

You’ve noticed that your baby’s tummy isn’t following the schedule that you got used to. Could it be constipation? Here are the signs that could confirm your suspicions:

  • You notice that they cry or fuss while they’re trying to have a hard bowel movement.
  • The poop, when it does come, is like hard pellets.
  • You notice streaks of red blood in the hard poop.

While it’s not easy for a baby on a liquid diet to become constipated, trouble can start when you start introducing your baby to solid foods at around 6 months. Here’s why:

New food types

Think of it as a learning curve: Your baby’s body is learning how to cope with a new kind of food to digest as they move away from their full liquid diet and you need to soften the learning curve. (Pardon the irresistible pun.)

Changes to fluid intake

Decreased fluids will make your baby’s poop harder and more difficult to push out. If they’ve started solids, they may need to up their fluid intake to offset the solid food. And if your baby is teething or feeling unwell, it can also lead to them taking in less fluid than usual.

Lack of fiber

Even though they’re just starting out, babies’ tummies work like ours. While initially the move to solids that have fiber (from breast milk or formula, which don’t) can cause temporary constipation, their tummies will adjust.

Make sure to monitor your baby’s fiber intake and pair it with plenty of hydration for a smooth ride the same way that you monitor yours.

OK, so you’ve confirmed that your baby is constipated. The next step is helping to alleviate the strain on their developing digestive system.

Remember that you can keep offering these foods as your baby develops into a toddler and beyond. In fact, there is little research or evidence to support specific foods (including high fiber ones) in treating or preventing constipation in infants. Most of these recommendations are based on evidence for older adults and children.

Keep in mind that good practice when introducing solids is to introduce foods as single ingredients. That way, if your baby is allergic to certain foods, you’ll be able to more easily trace the source.

If your little one hasn’t tried these foods before, don’t rush the process. Test out one at a time and then introduce combinations once you’re confident they’re well tolerated.

  • Back to basics. Give your baby’s digestive tract a break by feeding them mashed avocado or sweet potato purée. These are easy to digest and may give your baby the kick start they need.
  • B vegetables. Think broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and beans. Purée these for a meal filled with fiber.
  • P fruits. Your grandmother was right — bring on the prunes for quick work. A purée that includes a mix of prunes plus pears, plums, or peaches should work magic. Try subbing the prunes with dates for a change.
  • Bring on the fiber. If your baby is over 8 months, you can offer them whole grains like oatmeal, fiber-rich cereals, whole wheat pasta, and brown rice.
  • Water intake. Until 6 months an exclusively breastfed or formula-fed baby doesn’t need to drink water. Above this age, you can introduce small amounts of water.

Plums and pears with cinnamon

Cut 2 or 3 pears and plums into small pieces. Place in a saucepan with a small amount of water and simmer until soft. Add in a sprinkle of cinnamon. Blend thoroughly.

Sweet potato with apple and peach

Cut half a sweet potato, one apple, and half a peach into small pieces. Place in steamer basket and cook until tender. Blend until smooth.

Spinach and apple purée

Chop two apples into small chunks and cook in saucepan with about 1/2 cup of water. When they’re tender, add about 1 cup of spinach and cook another 2 to 3 minutes. Purée until smooth. Can be seasoned with cinnamon and ginger.

Some sources suggest prune, pear, and apple juices help to increase the water content in poop and can ease constipation.

However, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends steering clear of fruit juice for children younger than 1 year old. You can stick with these fruits as purées for similar effects.

What is it about prune juice? The high levels of sorbitol and phenolic substances in prune juice and dried plums act as a laxative and diuretic properties. So if your child is over 1 year old, you can use small amounts of prune juice to encourage their system to run.

Some studies show that constipation may affect as much as 30 percent of children. If your child is part of the unlucky statistic, here are some foods that you may want to give them smaller amounts of until it passes:

  • bananas
  • dairy products such as cheese and yogurt
  • low fiber foods like white rice, white bread, and white pasta

If you’re like most parents, you’ll be up for whatever you can try to help your baby get comfortable fast. Here are a few tricks that you can use to ease your baby’s constipation:

  • Warm baths. These can relax those abdominal muscles and get them working.
  • Exercise. Lay your baby on their back and push their legs alternately as if they’re cycling a bike. Alternatively, hold their knees and feet together and push their feet towards their belly.
  • Massage. Use your fingertip to draw clockwise circles on your baby’s stomach.

If you see that despite your home remedies, your baby still is having hard stools or hasn’t pooped after 2 or 3 days from their last hard stool, then contact your pediatrician. Especially if you consistently notice blood in their poop or your baby is extremely irritable and appears to be in pain.

While dealing with your baby’s toilet issues may seem a tad unsavory, you’ll soon be so used to it, that you’ll find yourself sharing your insights over coffee with other parents. And don’t be shy about sharing the yummy food combinations you discover to keep things moving.

Baby foods that help with constipation

by Emmy Samtani

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Constipation in newborns is fairly uncommon and many parents confuse irregular bowel movements with constipation. Babies can poop anywhere from every feed to once a week. But rather than frequency, you want to look for consistency and whether they are hard or soft. Then once your baby starts on solid foods this can change as their little digestive systems adjust to their new diet and certain foods they eat can cause constipation. But there are also plenty of foods you can give your baby that will also help treat constipation and help keep them regular.

What foods help relieve constipation?

Once your baby is on solid foods their poop schedule might change drastically, again the most important thing is not how often they poop, but more so how hard or soft it is. A constipated baby will often show pain or discomfort or strain, and they may have a hard or bloated tummy. 

You want to make sure your baby is eating a high fibre diet to help keep their bowel movements regular. The top foods for managing and relieving constipation are:

The P-fruits

Pears, plums, peaches and prunes are seriously high in fibre and can work a treat to get things moving. Rotate these in your baby’s diet to help keep them regular, and then dose them up when they need a little extra help. Prunes can be particularly effective in getting things moving, so remember to start with small amounts and work up depending on your child’s needs.


An apple a day can help keep more than just the doctor away, they can help keep constipation at bay. Apples are high in fibre and are a great regular addition to your child’s diet and are sweet and most kids love them.


So broccoli might be a harder sell to your little one, especially as they get older, but broccoli is a great source of fibre (and not to mention a host of other nutrients) so keeping this as a regular staple in their diet is a great idea.

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Make sure you are giving your children whole grains, so wholemeal breads, pasta, oats, quinoa etc. Not only are these better for your children, but they are also higher in fibre and nutrients than white varieties that are low in fibre.

Chia seeds, flax seeds or LSA

All these are great particularly if you have a fussy eater as they can be snuck into cereal, porridge, smoothies or even baked into muffins or slices and they are high in both soluble and insoluble fibre helping keep bowel movements regular. These are best given to babies over nine months, but always speak with your doctor if you are unsure.


Once your child is over six months you should be making sure your child is getting plenty of water in their diet every day. They will get much of their daily water needs from food and milk but as they grow they will need more and it’s a good habit to get them into and enjoying from an early age.

Fruit juice

It’s good to avoid giving your child too much fruit juice as it is high in sugar, however when they are struggling to get a bowel movement a small amount of apple juice or prune juice can work a treat. Dilute it with water and just start with small amounts, as a little will go a long way. 

What foods cause constipation?


The most common food that causes constipation might just surprise you: bananas. Bananas are a staple in most children’s diet, they are a great first food and convenient on the go snack as your child grows. And not to mention most kids love them. However, if you notice your child is struggling then maybe cut back on their banana intake, and make sure you’re not giving them green or underripe ones as these will make it worse.


Dairy is another common culprit when it comes to constipation in children, especially because kids love it and their diets are often packed full of it. However, if you are worried it’s contributing to their constipation it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before cutting out dairy 

Rice and rice cereal

Rice cereal is often given to babies as a first food, and rice is a great addition to their diet as they grow, however, be mindful that too much rice can be difficult on a baby’s digestive system. Rice absorbs water in the gut, meaning it can make the stool firmer and harder to pass, leading to constipation. 

Just like us adults, baby’s will suffer from constipation from time to time and this is perfectly normal. When babies are being introduced to new foods, and as they go through fussy phases as they grow, they will likely experience bouts of constipation. Managing it through their diet with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables and wholegrains is the easiest way to stay on top of it. However, if you feel concerned or it is happening regularly you should always speak with your doctor about possible solutions.

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Emmy Samtani

Emmy is the founder of Kiindred and mother to 3 little ones.
Over the last 4 years, she has worked with some of the most credible experts in the parenting space and is a keen contributor on all things parenthood.

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Diet for constipation in a child | Mamovediya

Constipation is a fairly common problem among children of all ages from infants to teenagers.

One of the main causes of constipation in a child is improper or irrational nutrition. If the child has constipation, then in order to normalize the baby's stool, it is necessary to develop the habit of emptying the intestines at the same time, as well as to make the right diet.

When preparing a diet for a child who suffers from constipation, it is necessary to include in the diet foods that increase the volume of feces and improve intestinal motility, foods that have an enveloping effect and help food slide well into the lower sections, foods rich in potassium, necessary for a good the work of the intestinal muscles, as well as fermented milk products containing bifidobacteria, which contribute to the development of beneficial intestinal microflora. nine0003

Parents need to carefully review their baby's diet and avoid foods that may contribute to constipation.

Foods that may impede the process of emptying the intestines of a child include dried blueberries, foods that have a viscous consistency, rice and semolina, too hot dishes, as well as drinks such as cocoa and strong tea.

Also constipation can be promoted by muffins, fresh bread and other products made from white wheat flour dough, including dumplings, dumplings, yeast pies. nine0003

Bread with bran, buckwheat, oatmeal, raw vegetables and fruits, dried fruits, especially prunes, dried apricots and apricots are very helpful in the fight against constipation.

From vegetables and fruits with constipation, it is necessary to use carrots, pumpkins, beets, zucchini, cauliflower, greens, baked apples.

Also, in case of constipation, it is necessary to include in the diet low-fat varieties of meat and fish, dairy products, sour cream, jelly and fruit and berry compotes.

From dairy products, sour-milk products containing biocultures, one-day kefir, fermented baked milk and yogurt are best suited. nine0003

Since the diet for constipation in a child requires the restriction of sweets and starchy foods, instead of sweets, you can prepare a healthy and tasty dried fruit dessert for your child.

When compiling a diet for a child with constipation, it is necessary to try to increase the amount of ballast substances in the diet , which will swell in the intestines, and contribute to an increase in the volume of feces. These substances include fiber, pectin, seaweed, cellulose, bran.

If a child has bloating due to constipation, then in his diet it is necessary to exclude food that is rich in dietary fiber.

It is very important to avoid gas-producing foods while dieting . Such products include cabbage, beans, cucumbers, eggplants, pears, lingonberries, spinach, sorrel, apple and grape juice.

It is very important for a diet in case of constipation in a child to maintain an optimal drinking regimen and make sure your child is drinking enough fluids throughout the day. For drinking, mineral water without gas, juice with pulp, dried fruit compote, herbal tea are best suited.

If a child has a pronounced painful contraction of the intestines, then he should not be given coarse fiber for food. All fruits and vegetables should be given to the baby without the skin. Juices with pulp, mashed potatoes, sour-milk products, low-fat boiled meat and fish, honey, jams, jams can also help such a child very well. nine0003

For infants who are bottle-fed, it is necessary to choose a therapeutic mixture for constipation in a child .

If the baby is breastfed, then in this case, the nursing mother needs to consume a lot of fresh vegetables and fruits, as well as dairy products.

The introduction of complementary foods to a child with constipation is best to start with one-component vegetable puree and pumpkin, zucchini, carrots, beets are well suited for this. nine0003

It is not possible to choose one general diet for all children, since it is necessary to take into account the individual characteristics of the baby's body and his state of health.

It is very important to remember that constipation that does not go away for a long time in a child is a reason for immediate medical attention, because in such cases one diet is not enough.


Constipation in children. Diet and gymnastics of a child with constipation.

Constipation is a very common problem in children. Why?

With the start of complementary foods, stools in infants most often improve. This is due to the introduction of fiber into the child's diet, as well as an increase in the child's motor activity.
But after 1 year the number of children suffering from constipation starts to grow again. This is due to the refusal of breastfeeding, the transition to solid food, a decrease in the amount of water in the diet. Approximately every fifth child after a year suffers from constipation. How to deal with this problem? nine0003

For your health - the recommendations of the pediatrician of the clinic "Lor Plus", a doctor of the highest category Anna Gennadievna Marakulina .

What are the most common causes of constipation in children?

- Insufficient fluid volume.
- Diet, poor in fiber.
- Insufficient physical activity.

How to avoid constipation in a child?

To prevent constipation, the child must drink enough fluids. Be sure to teach your child to drink ordinary water. A child over 3 years of age is required to drink at least 2 glasses of water a day. nine0003

— It is not recommended to give your child sweet and carbonated drinks, strong tea and coffee. They have a diuretic effect, contribute to the development of dehydration and constipation.
- Cold water stimulates peristalsis. And warm water has a relaxing effect on the muscles of the gastrointestinal tract and is quickly absorbed. Therefore, in case of constipation, it is recommended to give a child up to 3 years old 1/2 cup, and over 3 years old - 1 glass of cool water in the morning on an empty stomach. Start with water at room temperature. If the effect is not achieved and the state of health permits, the water temperature is gradually lowered. It should be pleasantly cool. In this case, peristalsis is stimulated by rapid filling and irritation of the stomach, and then the intestines. nine0075 - There are drinks that have a laxative effect. Dairy products, plum and beet juice, dried fruit compote (prunes, dried apricots, raisins), chamomile decoction, children's teas with fennel and dill. By including these drinks in your baby's diet, regular stools can be achieved. But this should be done gradually, starting with small amounts, so as not to cause a digestive breakdown in the child.

Does diet help with constipation?

Everyone knows that a diet for constipation should include a lot of fiber-rich foods, and these are vegetables and fruits. But not everyone knows how much and what kind of fruits and vegetables a child needs. nine0104 200 gr Dry fruits 10-15 grams 200 g 200-300 gr

Yes, most children to normalize the chair and regularly be a drinking regime and ghost according to age. But not for everyone.

Some people need to supplement their diet with laxative foods. These include: plums, beets, prunes, raisins, figs, dates, dried apricots, legumes, nuts. They should be present in the diet of a child prone to constipation. Include them in the diet should be gradually. For some, it will be enough to consume one of the listed products daily, while others will need to include several in the diet. nine0003

Cereal porridges with shells (buckwheat, oatmeal, pearl barley, wheat) and wholemeal bread are also useful.

Fermented milk products (kefir, curdled milk, fermented baked milk, biolact) are best consumed before going to bed. 1 glass a day is enough. You can increase the daily intake of kefir to 2 glasses per day.

Refined rice, blueberries, pears, sweets and buns, flour products from premium flour, strong tea, animal fats have a fixing effect. It is better for children prone to constipation to abstain or significantly limit their use. nine0003

I recommend trying several recipes for constipation tested by me and my patients:

— Take equal amounts of dried fruits: figs, dates, dried apricots, prunes, wash well, pour over with boiling water, destone, turn through a meat grinder or chop in a blender . Take daily in the morning on an empty stomach (30 minutes before meals) 1-2 teaspoons with 1 glass of water with lemon. Children under 3 years old - 1/2 cup of water.

This recipe can be used by children from 1 year old, but be sure to first test how the child tolerates each dried fruit separately, and then prepare the mixture. nine0003

— Sour milk + prunes for the night: 10-20 pieces of prunes are well washed, brewed with boiling water for 5-10 minutes, a small child can be mashed. Eat before going to bed with 1 glass of kefir, biolact, fermented baked milk, curdled milk.

Wheat bran is a very useful product, because contain approximately 50% fiber, as well as many vitamins and minerals. You can buy them at a pharmacy.
Wheat bran can be included in the diet of children after 1 year as a remedy for constipation. Start with a daily amount of 1 teaspoon, gradually, every 2-3 days, increasing the dose until a regular stool is achieved. The maximum dose for children is up to 2 tablespoons per day. nine0075 The daily dose of bran is brewed with a small amount of boiling water. It is kept under the lid for 30-40 minutes, then the excess water is drained, and the swollen bran is added to the child's food, most often to porridge. You can add them to kefir, cottage cheese, vegetable and fruit puree. You can add the entire daily dose of bran in one serving of food, can be divided evenly into breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Exercises for constipation. Helps or not?

In my experience, it helps a lot! Active and mobile children are less likely to suffer from constipation. For the prevention of constipation, sports are useful: running, swimming, gymnastics, squats, tilts, exercises to strengthen the abdominal press. nine0003

A child suffering from constipation, in addition to following a diet and drinking regimen, is recommended to do a few simple things in the morning:

- Get up early so that there is enough time for all morning activities, including going to the toilet, water (possible with a mixture of dried fruits),
- Perform the following exercises - Starting position standing: take a deep breath, then a deep exhale, then draw in the stomach as much as possible and stick it out. Repeat the exercises several times. nine0075 There is a good chance that the child will want to go to the toilet afterwards.
Abdominal massage is also useful.

Is constipation so dangerous?

The causes, and hence the consequences of constipation can be different:
• stress - you need to create a calm environment for the child,
• rectal fissures - you need to contact the surgeon,
• arbitrary retention of stool - you need to talk with the child, try to work out from him morning defecation schedule.
And the consequences can be different. It is always better to find out the causes of the disease with your pediatrician. So you can avoid dangerous consequences. nine0075 It is not recommended to give a child laxatives and suppositories on their own, as well as frequently repeat cleansing enemas. If for a long time (more than 1 month) it is not possible to establish a regular chair for a child, you need to see a doctor. Diet

Let your baby be always healthy!
And the pediatricians of the clinic "Lor Plus" are ready to answer the questions of mothers and fathers about the well-being of the child and the prevention of childhood diseases.
Come to our clinic!

Experienced pediatricians see children in our clinics:
Marakulina Anna Gennadievna (pediatrician, doctor of the highest qualification category, experience 29 years)
Fedoseeva Olesya Andreevna (pediatrician).
Our doctors:
- They will pick up the key to the crying baby,
- They will calm the worried mom,
- They will quickly make the correct diagnosis,
- They will prescribe an effective treatment.

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