What Helps Constipation? What To Eat When Constipated?

Nutrition

What Helps Constipation? What To Eat When Constipated?

I find too many kids nowadays eat too much processed food, too little fiber, and way too little water. In fact many adults do the same.

Constipation isn’t just about how often you stool, but about the consistency as well.

Constipation isn’t just about how often you stool, but about the consistency as well. Your child should ideally stool at least once per day, it should be soft, should not hurt to push out, and it should take less than a few minutes. Many adults and kids are used to sitting on the toilet for long periods of time and pushing out hard, large volume or marble-like stools. This is not normal.

 

What helps constipation?

WHAT TO EAT WHEN CONSTIPATED

This involves more fruits, vegetables, and trying more brown pasta, rice, bread than white versions.

Some veg and fruit are lowered fiber than you may think!

Kids less than 3 years of age need about 20 g of fiber a day and kids 4-10 need about 25-30 g.

Teens and adults need 30-40g/day.

Choose high fiber versus low fiber choices more often (adapted from AboutKidsHealth.ca):

Low Fiber

Medium Fiber

High Fiber

Peaches Oranges Pear and apple with skin
Melons Peeled apples and pears Mangoes
Grapes Pineapple Berries
Cucumber Banana Dried fruits
Fruit juices String beans Green pees
Tomato Broccoli Snow peas
Cauliflower Carrots Legumes
Creamed corn Corn on the cob Air popped popcorn
Potato with no skin Potato with skin (white or sweet)  
Squash    
Spinach and lettuce    
Cabbage

DRINK LOTS OF FLUIDS

Most children require a liter to 2 of water per day!

Some kids drink too much pop and other caffeinated beverages. These act as diuretics, opposite to water.

BOWEL ROUTINE

I suggest putting a child on the toilet/potty after every meal. Yes, after breakfast, lunch and dinner. This makes it so you don’t have to battle about going to the washroom. It’s routine. Happy to chat more about my toilet training method.

ALREADY CONSTIPATED?

Once constipated, the bowel starts to stretch out, and this can take a number of months to go back to normal. Therefore, treating constipation is not a quick fix. In addition to starting more fluids and fiber, I often use medication that brings fluid into the stool, called Peg 3350. We can chat about if your child would benefit from this.

Don’t forget to watch my handy video on foods that can help with constipation!

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Quick Tips:

  • Prevention is key

  • Drink up!

  • Fill up on fiber

  • Make pooing part of your routine!

The general information provided on the Website is for informational purposes and is not medical advice.

Do NOT use this Website for medical emergencies.

If you have a medical emergency, call a physician or qualified healthcare provider, or CALL 911 immediately. Under no circumstances should you attempt self-treatment based on anything you have seen or read on this Website. Always seek the advice of your physician or other licensed and qualified health provider in your jurisdiction concerning any questions you may have regarding any information obtained from this Website and any medical condition you believe may be relevant to you or to someone else. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this Website.

Dina M. Kulik, MD, FRCPC, PEM

About Dina M. Kulik, MD, FRCPC, PEM

Dina is a wife, mother of 4, and adrenaline junky. She loves to share children’s health information from her professional and personal experience. More About Dr Dina.

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