How To Prevent Constipation In Infants, Toddlers And Adults

how to prevent constipation

Are you or your children fighting with digestive problems? Do you want to help yourself or someone you know get rid of constipation? Thus, you need to read this article. By following tips in this article, you will have useful experience in changing your diet routine and your baby’s diet to resolve constipation effectively. I’m Hang Pham, an author from the site, and I made this article to show you the top 21 tips on how to prevent constipation in infants, children and adults.

How To Prevent Constipation – Discover Top 21 Tips And Advice On How To Prevent Constipation In Infants, Toddlers And Adults

1.  Eating High-Fiber Foods eating high-fiber foods

  • Pears: Pears include fiber, which is very useful for treating constipation. Remember that you should eat the peel to receive the fiber entirely in pears. In the skin of pears, there are 5 to 6 grams of dietary fiber that can help you regulate digestive system.
  • Rye Bread: a researcher suggests that you should eat cereals and whole grain breads to relieve constipation. She says “Whole grains have lots of fiber, which is good not only for the bowels but also the heart,” Researchers at the University of Finland in Helsinki found that whole grain rye bread is better than wheat bread, as well as laxatives for easing constipation. Those findings were reported in the Journal of Nutrition in 2024. You should intake enough slices (for 12.3 grams) to achieve 30 grams of fiber per day. However, you should not eat that too much. Kings, a nutritionist, says that the primary component of dietary fiber in rye is arabinoxylan, which can keep foods going through your intestine.
  • Kiwi: Doctors also usually order this kind of fruit. Average one kiwi will provide a lot of vitamins, nutrients, and for 2.5 grams of fiber that are very good for your health, containing your intestines. A kiwi is like a berry, which is useful seed. Although people like to eat flesh, you can eat the peel. A study released in 2024 in Advances in Food and Nutrition Research implied that eating kiwi can improve bowel movements very well. In a previous study in Taipei, researchers also found that eating two kiwis per day could increase the bowel movement number in adults.
  • Beans: If you serve a cup of beans, you will get 10 grams of fiber. This is a rich source of fiber for human beings, to wipe out constipation. T. Stephanie, a nutritionist says, “Beans have a great mixture of soluble and insoluble fiber, which helps the food keep moving through your intestines, “You can use one of these kinds of beans such as pinto beans, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, lima beans, baked beans, or black-eyed peas with pasta, soups, salads, or casseroles.
  • Prunes: These fruits are considered as grandma’s remedy. Dr. Kim says. “Prunes and prune juice have been used for many years to help relieve constipation,” and they are yours, as well. Researchers at the University of Iowa also tested pitted, dried plums (prunes) against psyllium (laxative) for 40 constipated adults. The people given plums were measured higher bowel movements than those given laxative. They concluded “Prunes are high in insoluble fiber as well as the natural laxative sorbitol. That combination will for sure make you go!”

Learn more: Constipation Help book

2. Avoiding Foods That Can Cause Constipation avoiding foods that can cause constipation

  • Dairy Products: Almost dairy products such as cheese, milk can make you more constipated, especially for infant. According to Kings, “It is unknown if it is dairy itself says “or if it’s a combination of things. However, the lactose in dairy can cause increased gas and bloating. That can make you feel even worse if things aren’t moving through properly.” A study about Iranian children at the ages of 1 to 13 reported that dairy products contribute to their constipation. Almost children (for 80 %) who reduced milk from daily diets have more bowel movements.
  • Chocolate: Chocolate is one of the most factors that can cause constipation, therefore, it is forbidden for people who have irritable bowel syndrome. Doctors say, “The exact mechanism isn’t known, but it is thought that the large amount of fat in chocolate can slow the digestion process. It is thought to slow down muscle contractions (peristalsis) and thus foods moving through the bowel.” In a study, German researchers already requested constipated people list the foods that can cause constipation and chocolate was one of the top of list.
  • Red Meat: Whenever talking about red meat, you will list a lot of reasons that people should not use red meat every day. Red meat can cause constipation significantly. Studies indicate that red meat includes high fat that can lower the process of digestion. This kind of meat also has tough fibers that can become triggers for digesting. Moreover, red meat also includes iron, which can cause constipation. Nutritionists suggest that you should limit consuming red meat if you do not want to get constipated.
  • Caffeine: Caffeine can make you have more bowel movements; therefore, it is listed in the drinks that you should avoid for constipation. However, you can find dehydrated in caffeine in black tea, coffee, while chocolate can make you more constipated.
  • Bananas: Like caffeine, bananas are the fruits that you should avoid if you want to treat constipation. But, ripe bananas can help you reduce constipation, unripe bananas can make you more constipated, and green bananas will make you have constipation because they have starch, which will limit the digestion process in your stomach. Bananas also include pectin (fiber) that can carry water to the stool. Doctors say, “So, if someone is already dehydrated, this can only [worsen] the problem.”

Keep reading this article to get more details about tips on how to prevent constipation naturally.

3. Making Some Simple Changes To Improve Your Diet As Well As Help Prevent Constipation making some simple changes to improve your diet as well as help prevent constipation

  • Stay hydrated: If you use more fibers in your daily diets with supplements or foods, you should drink more fluids to stimulate digestion. Let drink 8 glasses per day with low or no-calorie beverages, while drinking fruit or sugary soda can supply you unnecessary calories.
  • Consider a fiber supplement: If you have troubles in getting fiber from foods, you can use some fiber supplements such as Metamucil, Fibercon, and Citrucel. Fiber supplements are considered as forming laxatives, they are non-habit forming and very safe. But you should ask your doctor before using those supplements because they may not be suitable for someone.
  • Add fiber gradually: Do not be panic when adding fiber, you can slowly add fiber for weeks, and increasing fiber quickly can lead to gas or bloating. In this case, you should be patient because your body needs time to adjust.
  • Go for grains: If you want to add fiber, let use brown rice, whole-wheat pasta, and whole-grain bread replacing white rice, white bread, and pasta. You can use more whole-wheat cracker, multi-grain cereals, and whole oats with low-sugar and low-fat options. You can replace chips by snack on air-popped popcorn. When you use cereal, you should choose the brands that can supply you at least 5 grams of fiber in a serving.
  • Add veggies: When adding fiber, you do not need to count it every day. But you can use 2 ½ cups of vegetables and 2 cups of fruit per day for best result. In addition, you can use roasted veggies with sandwiches, salad in your daily meals, and use pre-cut vegetables, use fruit bowl full for healthy and handy snack, and add dried, chopped fruit to cereal and oatmeal.

Learn more: 26 Best And Worst Foods For Digestion Problems

4. Consult Your Doctor Before Taking Laxatives

You can use laxatives to make your digestive system good. They can help you get bowel movements naturally when you do not use pills. However, you should check with your doctor if you want to take laxatives for sure.

5. Give Yourself Time And Get Enough Exercise give yourself time and get enough exercise

Let ignore your hurry time and perform daily exercises, do not concern about your body’s need, exercises can help you get a bowel movement. Do not be busy with works, let take it easy with your toilet, you will relieve your constipation difficulties.

Daily exercises will make your digestive system stay healthy and active. You do not need to be a professional athlete, just spending 20 or 30 minutes walking every day, you will see positive change.

You should create a schedule about your activities, just need 30 minutes per day to walk, but have to stick to it. Living active will help you stay healthy and help the gut work effectively. According to studies, exercise can increase nitric oxide levels, which can reduce constipation efficiently. With elderly and pregnant women, low nitric oxide levels can cause hypertension and constipation.

Learn more: 18 Health Benefits Of Walking Everyday

6. Do Not Overeat And Cut Down On Caffeine And Alcohol

Alcohol and caffeine can dehydrate you, so let turn to decaffeinated coffee immediately. If you want to give up constipation, do not overeat, let eat small meals to help your digestive system work easier. You can try to use three meals per day and feel your change. You also should avoid eating late, especially at night because your body will have troubles in digesting, your body needs to sleep. In addition, you will need to limit or stop drinking alcohol. If you want to discover other tips on how to prevent constipation, continue reading this article.

Learn more: How to Give Up Alcohol book

7. Limit Eating Cookies And Chips In Toddlers limit eating cookies and chips in toddlers

Lyssie Lakatos, RD, a registered dietician says that cookies and other sources such as crackers, cakes, and pastries have three strikes when you are in constipation phase. They are low in fluid, high in fat, and low in fiber. She adds that you should use snack choices such as fresh fruit that can relieve risk of constipation, and higher-fiber dessert also can reduce constipation risk.

Some kinds of snacks such as potato chips can be listed in the most foods that cause constipation. By replacing them, you can use other foods that are rich in fiber. Spielmann says, “High-fat foods like potato chips cause delayed digestion, leading to a ‘too-full’ feeling that mirrors constipation,” In order to reduce constipation, you should intake low-fat snack foods that include whole grains to help you intake more fiber.

8. Do Not Allow Toddlers To Eat Fried Foods

Some kinds of foods can slow movement through digestive system are fishes, fried foods such as onion rings, doughnuts, and so on. Those foods can cause constipation. Spielmann says, “Just like potato chips, other deep-fried foods are greasy and take a long time to digest” and “This can slow your normal gastrointestinal movement.” By changing cooking methods such as broiling and steaming, you can relieve constipation very effectively.

Learn more: 23 Foods That Cause Acid Reflux, Heartburn, Indigestion, And Gas

9. Improve Bowel Habits Of Toddlers

Each day, you should encourage your children using bathroom regularly, the best time is after meals, or whenever they need to go, your toddler should sit at list 10 minutes per time. You can put a small stool under the feet of your children; the leverage will help them push easily. Sometimes, you can have award for your children if they use toilet every day.

10. Take Probiotics: Support The Digestive System With Friendly Bacteria take probiotics support the digestive system with friendly bacteria

It is very necessary to have healthy bacteria and probiotics in your body. You can try to use HLC Mindlinx Probiotics of Pharmax. This formula is suitable for children over 2 years, who get constipation or other symptoms such as sensitivities to foods, diarrhea, indigestion, vomiting spit up, acid reflux. You can use this powder in water or milk. During and after antibiotic treatment, taking probiotics is very important for you. After treatment, keep probiotics for your child at least 6 months for the best effect.

11. Remove Processed Carbohydrates

If your child is constipated, do not feed refined or processed foods or any foods including corn syrup or sugar anymore. Those foods can imbalance bacteria in digestive system, which can bring troubles for your bowel and constipation.

Learn more: 27 Healthy Snack Ideas For Kids & Adults

12. Lubricate Intestines With Healthy Fats

In each meal, you can add 1 spoon of coconut oil ghee, pastured butter, or sour cream. For example, you can add 1 spoon of coconut oil to your pancakes, yogurt, sour cream to omelet, or big spoon butter onto veggies or rice, and a big spoon of sour cream onto soup or beans in the dinner.

13. Cook With Plenty Of Fats From Healthy Animals cook with plenty of fats from healthy animals

For example, birds on grass-fed meats, ducks, pasture, beef, chicken, pork, geese and poultry

Those fats are safe because in high temperature cooking, they are still stable. For low temperature cooking, you can use virgin coconut oil, olive oil, or butter, which are burned easily. Burned oil has negative impact to it is crucial if you do not burn them. Besides, Omega 3 is very useful and critical in healing inflammation and lubricating the intestines in GI, which makes you constipated. Your children should use cold liver oil every day; you can try Kid’s DHA Fruit Punch or Arctic Cod Liver Oil. Especially, Homemade Bone made from fish or chicken are very good for treating constipation. You can use a big batch and feed your children a cup a day or use the water to make veggie puree, quinoa, or brown rice. You will discover other tips on how to prevent constipation with the next part of this article.

Recommended reading: Alkaline Cook Book

14. Give Your Child Enemas

If your children get constipation, you should prepare for them an enema before going to sleep. Dr Natasha Campbell McBride advises you to use enemas because it can supply:

  • Effective relief for constipation
  • Friendly bacteria, the removal compaction in the bowel, toxins reduction produced by putrefaction accumulated.
  • Probiotics that can help you get friendly bacteria that can be damaged by acid in stomach when you intake foods.
  • The filling motion and colon empty rise up peristaltic that colon can turn the material out of digestive tract.
  • Frequency and quality for bowel movements.

During the enema, your children should lie on their right side. This position can help them flow the probiotics pas the colon descended, around the splenic flexure corner, release better for toxic feces, and into the transverse colon. You should be sure to supply 3-4 probiotics capsules to the enema. This activity can increase friendly bacteria number.

You can use FLEET if you cannot do enema for your children. This suppository can lubricate the bowels and it is easier for bowel movement. It is very useful if your child is afraid of BM and pain.

15. Give Your Child Ginger, Mint, Or Chamomile Tea With A Little Raw Honey Between Meals In Your Child’s Sippy Cup give your child ginger, mint, or chamomile tea with a little raw honey between meals in your child’s sippy cup

Put some frozen ginger root or fresh ginger root into chamomile herbs, fresh mint, or teapot. Use additional boiling water, cover, steep for 3-5 minutes, pour it and ready to use when tea is cool enough.

By using this method, you can provide the natural treatment for constipation for your children. It will help your digestive system work normally and regulate bowel movements. It is very important to change diets and give time for children’s body to react to what you are try to change, particularly, for serious problems.

16. Watch Out The Baby For Signs Of Constipation And Note Changes In The Frequency Of Bowel Movements

If babies are constipated, they will have inconvenience and pain during bowel movements. Though frequency is not a trustable pointer of constipation, immediate changes in eliminating schedule can make your babies diarrheal or constipation. Healthy babies can go up between bowel movements, but fed babies can have 1-3 days and usually have difficulties while passing a stool, they will get higher rate of constipation.

17. Keep The Baby Adequately Hydrated keep the baby adequately hydrated

Staying hydrated is one of the best tips on how to prevent constipation in babies.

One of the reasons can make your children constipated is dehydration.

  • Let encourage your children drinking enough water or fluid, especially when the weather is warm or hot.
  • Keep the baby at a comfortable temperature to reduce fluid loss through perspiration. Have convenient temperature to decrease loss of fluid via perspiration. Do not over dress the baby, and do not allow them to play or sleep in hot room. Also, you do not let them go out if it is warm or hot.

Learn more: Eat, Drink And Shrink Book

18. Switch The Type Of Formula You Use

For infants, they can get worse with specific ingredients.

  • If your baby is older than 4 months, let supply him or her juice or water including 2 to 4 oz. (60 to 120 ml) of pear or apple juice, prune, or fresh water.
  • Before making change, you should have switching formula with pediatrician of infants. The doctors will have some certain recommendations based on symptoms and medical history of infants.

19. Adjust The Baby’s Solid Food Diet

Do you know how to prevent constipation by adjusting the daily diet? Some kinds of foods can become triggers to constipation, whereas other foods can prevent infant from constipation.

  • Bananas and cooked carrots can make your children worse with constipation. Therefore, you should reduce the amount of those foods.
  • You can move to the foods that contain more fiber or use barley infant cereal.
  • If your doctor advises that you should use cereal with bran for your children, let supply them for your kids.
  • For reducing constipation risk, you can add apricots, pears, or prunes to baby’s diets. You can use these foods in mix purees or purees only into the cereal of baby.
  • Enrich your baby diets by adding variety of foods.

Learn more: 27 Easy And Healthy Baby Food Ideas

20. Keep The Baby Active And Massage The Baby’s Stomach keep the baby active and massage the baby's stomach

Another reason for constipation is low activity, so how to prevent constipation? You can follow some following simple techniques:

  • You can hold lower feet of your baby and move his legs gently in bicycling if your infant is not crawling yet.
  • You can use toys, move and roll that can help your baby crawl more usually, and increase the activity level for your baby.
  • You can encourage your baby moving by playing with them. This method is very helpful, so let try it.

In the fact, massaging gently can reduce constipation.

  • Place your hand across the baby’s stomach, 3 finger widths below the navel. Lay your hand across the stomach of your baby, with 3 fingers that are wide under the navel.

Gently massage your baby.

21. Ask The Baby’s Pediatrician For Advice

Pediatricians will give you advice on how to prevent constipation in infants, toddlers or treat it effectively. If you cannot treat constipation for your baby by yourself, you can require the doctor’s help. He can help you identify the root cause of constipation, which is very popular in babies. Some infants may get constipation with some symptoms such as allergic with foods, hypothyroidism, or other conditions.

To see all of our tips and advice on how to prevent constipation and other conditions, go to our main Home Health page.

After reading my overview about how to prevent constipation, I hope that it helps find out the best way for you or your children to stop constipation. This post is a part of a series about tips and methods for preventing or treating common conditions. Got a question? Need answers? Leave a comment below. Now are you ready to try to learn how to prevent constipation in infants, toddlers and adults?

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