Bananas, rice cereal and applesauce all tend to produce firmer
stools. Carrots and squash are constipating for some babies. Pears, peaches,
plums, apricots, peas and prunes make stools softer. By balancing the diet, you
can often keep the stools comfortably mid-range. If the stools are still too
firm, juice is the gentlest medicine to soften them up. Apple juice twice a day
is a good bet. If this doesn't work, prune juice is even better. Also, when
your son is straining you might want to put him in a tub of warm water. This
will relax his muscles and make the stool easier to pass.
Babies will strain from time to time to move the stool along
through the intestines. If you want to do something when babies grunt, push, or
strain, try picking them up to get gravity to help them in their efforts, or
try holding the knees against the chest to help them "squat" -- the
natural poop position. Straining is usually normal. Crying while straining may
be a sign of constipation.
age 1 should not eat honey because of the risk of infant botulism. Today, corn
syrups are manufactured under sanitary conditions to prevent this, but the
manufacturers do not make any guarantees.
Switch from rice
cereal to barley or oat cereal, or add pureed fruits or vegetables to the
regular cereal, once your baby is ready for them.
Once your baby is eating a variety of solid
foods, ask her pediatrician, if you can boost your baby's fiber intake by adding a
teaspoon of bran to her cereal. Cut down on constipating foods like rice,
bananas, and cooked carrots, and try mixing her cereal with a little bit of
apple or prune juice or a few tablespoons of pureed prunes, apricots, or pears
to help loosen her bowel movements.
Increase the amount of fluid your baby drinks to
help keep her stools soft. If your baby is older than 2 months, start by giving
her 1 ounce of prune juice diluted with 1 ounce of water, twice a day. As her
constipation improves, you can cut back.
The BRAT diet is used for the treatment of diarrhea in infants - BRAT stands for Bananas, Rice, Applesauce and Toast. An easy and natural way to remember how to alleviate
baby's constipation is to cut out the foods that contribute to it - rice
cereals, bananas, and applesauce. If you ever forget which foods to cut out,
Barley or oatmeal cereals,
prunes, peaches, plums, apricots and most vegetables are preferred when baby
has constipation. Juices are helpful,
especially apple or prune, but use in moderation, as they are not as nutritious
for babies as formula or breast milk. Try strained foods that contain high
fiber such as: apricots, prunes, peaches, plums, pears, peas, spinach.
When it comes to
bowel regularity, apples contain two types of fiber; insoluble and soluble. The
insoluble fiber works like roughage, while the soluble fiber (pectin), which is
found primarily in the skin, acts as a stool softener by drawing water into the
stool and increasing stool bulk. Because pectin firms up an excessively loose
stool, itís also used to treat diarrhea. Pectin in apple fiber apparently is the
reason that whole apples will firm up bowel movements. Think of Kaopectate - a
popular over-the-counter diarrhea remedy. Kaopectate, actually contains an
oxidized form of pectin.
As vegetables do
not contain soluble fiber unlike fruits do, your baby will find it harsh and
hard to adapt to insoluble fiber first. It may a good idea to introduce soluble
fiber first, and avoid white bread and bread with wheat flower. Whole grain bread and whole wheat breads slowly and gradually, taking into consideration of diverticulitis at later stages. Whole wheat is
the key since it contains complex carbohydrates good for gastrointestinal
function and insulin sensitivity. Limited bacterial fermentation in the colon
restricts the fermentation of carbohydrates and fat to smaller fatty acids,
which are good for intestinal function. Probiotic (such as the carbohydrate
inulin) containing yogurt and, yogurt, in general, are good; Beneficial
bacteria such as Bifidus, Lactobacillus, etc. are good for intestinal health.