What Foods Will Help A Child Poop?

What Is Constipation?

High fiber foods like fruits, vegetables and whole grains can help children relieve constipation.
High fiber foods like fruits, vegetables and whole grains can help children relieve constipation.

Constipation is a common problem in children and occurs when a child has:

  • Fewer than two bowel movements per week
  • Stools that are dry, hard, or lumpy
  • Stools that are difficult or painful to pass
  • A feeling their bowel movements are incomplete

What Foods Will Help A Child Poop?

High-fiber foods can help relieve constipation and help children stay regular. To help a child poop, try the following foods: 

  • Pears, plums, and apples 
    • Eat with the skin for added fiber
    • Look for baby foods with pears to help infants with constipation
  • Berries
    • Raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries are great fiber-rich snacks
    • They can also be pureed and frozen as a dessert 
  • Kiwi fruit
    • Is a type of berry 
    • Promotes regular bowel movements 
  • Dried fruits
    • Contains more fiber per serving than fresh fruit 
    • Prunes, raisins, figs, apricots are excellent sources of fiber
    • Prunes in particular are often called “nature’s laxative” 
    • Prune juice may help relieve constipation in babies
    • Add to cereal or bake into muffins
    • If it’s hard for the child to chew, soak in water to soften
    • Though they contain more fiber, dried fruits also contain more calories so consume sparingly in children who are overweight
  • Popcorn
    • Air-popped popcorn is high in fiber and low in calories
    • Avoid popcorn with butter, as the fat can cause constipation
  • Beans and legumes
    • Beans are an excellent source of fiber and can be added to pasta, soups, salads, and casseroles
    • Lentils, black beans, kidney beans, soybeans, and chickpeas
    • There are also black bean brownie recipes that use beans in lieu of flour, so even children who dislike beans may like the dessert
  • Whole grains
    • Whole grains are packed with fiber
    • Rye bread is better than whole wheat bread for constipation 
    • Ezekiel bread made of sprouted whole grains and legumes provides a good dose of fiber
    • Oatmeal and bran flake cereals are great breakfast choices – top with fruit for added fiber and sweetness
  • Sweet potatoes
    • The high fiber content in sweet potatoes helps prevent constipation
    • Leave on the skin, which contains most of the fiber 
    • Regular baked potatoes with skin are also a good source of fiber
    • Leave off high-fat toppings such as butter or sour cream because they may add to constipation 
  • Nuts and seeds
    • Almonds, pecans, and walnuts have more fiber than other nuts and make a great snack food
    • Seeds such as sesame seeds and pumpkin seeds can be sprinkled on salads for added fiber 
    • Choose nuts and seeds that are raw or dry roasted, rather than roasted in oil
    • Seeds and nuts are also high in calories, so keep portions small
  • Vegetables 
    • Carrots, broccoli, and green peas
    • Carrots are an easy snack
    • Try serving veggies raw with hummus 

In addition to eating high fiber foods, children should drink plenty of water to help the fiber work better. 

Medscape Medical Reference