Via Parenting Nation: 10 Fiber rich foods that will relieve constipation in kids more effectively

Constipation is extremely common in both kids and adults. Unhealthy eating habits take a toll on the digestive system which in turn upset the bowel movements. When we talk of constipation in kids, then it generally occurs once they reach the age of toilet training i.e. their toddlerhood (1-3 year old) and soon after they hit school in kindergarten.

Though constipation can be treated via medication or laxative, but to make sure that it’s fully uprooted, you must encourage your kids to have healthy food eating habits. Including fiber rich foods in their diet can play a major role in curbing constipation and smoothing the bowel movements. Adding fiber rich foods to your diet is the best home remedy for constipation and it also helps in avoiding many many health issues like obesity, blood presure, skin problems etc.

How Fiber Rich Foods Help?

Fiber happens to be the prime nutritive agent present in our food that aids digestion and helps in flushing out the waste in a painless way. Lesser intake of fiber results in constipation, both in kids and adults. Let us here find out what are the major fiber rich foods that can help curb constipation in kids.

Fiber Rich Foods For Treating Constipation in Kids


It can be a great substitute to make some healthy snacks for your kids. If your child is fond of pasta, ditch the regular one and switch to the wheat pasta. It’s not just healthy but is also great in taste. For sandwiches also, avoid using the white bread and instead opt for the whole wheat bread. This helps in reducing the dullness which often is caused by white bread.

2. Breakfast Cereals

Refrain from serving choco-chips and rather pick the multi-grain cookie for a healthy and yummy breakfast choice. Encourage your child to have oatmeal in place of corn flakes. Make sure that the cereal brands you buy have ‘bran’ and ‘whole-wheat’ as prime ingredients.

3. Fruits with Edible Skin

Fruits are great sources of fiber and the fruits with edible skin can be a great choice for curbing constipation in kids. Apples, pears etc. have edible skin and can be given to kids in abundance. Papaya is another fruit which is not just rich in fiber but is a great source of vitamin A too. Also, papaya has digestive properties that makes it an ideal choice for treating constipation.

4. Beans

Be it the chick peas, the kidney beans or the black beans, all are rich in fiber and protein. You can cook them in a variety of ways. Roll them up in a wrap, serve as a puree or feed as soup, whatever the form be, beans provide complete nourishment.

5. Brown Rice

Health experts have been stating this since long, and it’s time you pay some heed to their advice. Put away that pack of white rice, and bring in the brown rice. White rice contains lowest of fiber and does no good to your body. On the contrary, brown rice is abundantly rich in fiber and is way too healthier.

6. Green Peas

Green peas are also rich in fiber. Whether you use the fresh one or the frozen lot, richness of fiber remains intact. You can prepare a soup of it adding little pepper and salt. Cooking it with potatoes is also a great choice.

7. Dried Nuts

Raisins, almonds, etc. not just make for a perfect snack or add on to your dishes, but are even rich in fiber. Most kids love nuts, and if you want to offer a distinct taste every time, try mixing it with other dishes.

8. Popcorn

As compared to the highly popular French Fries and potato chips, which are decked with carbohydrate, popcorn provide the right amount of fiber for treating constipation in kids. If you want to keep it healthy, avoid using butter or cheese. Just keep it plain, simple and healthy!

9. Soya Beans

Soya milk is quite similar to the regular milk except for the fact that it has no fat or lactose like the latter. It makes for a great choice for the lactose intolerant and ones who swear by vegetarian diet.

10. Sprouts

They are not just fiber rich foods, but have good amount of Vitamin B complex and Vitamin C, known to boost immunity. The longer they are sprouted, the more healthy and nutritious they turn out to be.

Including these fiber rich foods in your child’s daily diet can control constipation to a greater extent. Regular intake will surely help your kids get rid of constipation!

Via The Asian Parent: Prebiotics, an answer to your child’s constipation woes!

How many of you spend days on end worrying about your child’s constipation or just hardstools? You may have tried many different things. The problem is, most of the things available over the counter in the pharmacy are for adults.

But, there is a solution that can help children — with Prebiotics

What are prebiotics?

Prebiotics are carbohydrates that are not digested by the human body but help in making the stools softer and bulkier. They are, in fact, acted upon by beneficial bacteria that reside in our intestines to help in the formation of soft, bulky stools.

One of the most researched prebiotic mixture is GOS/lcFOS (9:1). This is an answer to your child’s bowel movement woes! In fact, this particular prebiotic has been studied for over 20 years and there is strong evidence that this works!

The process of digestion

Before we begin demystifying the scientific jargon, let us take a moment to understand how digestion works.

When your child has her favourite mashed peas, the digestion begins right from the mouth. The saliva starts breaking down the carbohydrates in the food. The food then passes through the digestive track-the food pipe, stomach, intestines and is then thrown out in the form of stools.

Barring a few exceptions, there is an absorption of nutrients and/or water throughout the alimentary canal. Organs like liver, pancreas and gall bladder help in the digestion of food. As the food matter traverses the intestines, it becomes more solid, as more and more water is absorbed from it.

Hard stools are formed when the absorption of the water is more than desired. This often happens when there is inadequate roughage in the food. Roughage is dietary fibres, like the oligosaccharides, that retain water and give the stools a form. Now you can guess why addition of this to the formula is a good idea!

Prebiotics GOS/lcFOS (9:1) mixture

The health benefits of 9:1 mixture of galcto-oligosaccharides with long chain Fructo-oligosaccharides is a validated by over 20 years of research. It forms a base for the normal soft stools to be formed. But in addition, it helps the good bacteria grow in the intestine of your child. This in turn, inhibits the growth of harmful bacteria that cause infections.

Thus it helps in three main ways

  1. By strengthening the gut protective barrier and making it difficult for harmful bacteria from entering the blood via the gut
  2. Promoting good bacterial colonies, essential for normal health and wellbeing
  3. Providing necessary roughage leading to formation of soft stools

Would it work if child has hard stools?

If your child suffers from hard stools, prebiotics would help change the consistency of the stools. They pass undigested to the intestine where they are acted upon by beneficial bacteria. The result: formation if short chain fatty acids. They play an active role in the movement of the bowel.

The bacteria in the stools at this point cause two things. Firstly, as a process of digesting the prebiotics, they release gas. This gas gets trapped, causing lighter stools. The digested fibres and the bacterial cells absorb and retain water in the stools causing the stools to soften. Thus, the quality of bowel movement improves with consumption of prebiotics.

Here is an illustration of how prebiotics Gos/lcFOS (9:1) works.

Result? Reduction in FGIDs

By definition, Functional Gastrointestinal disturbances (FGIDs) are gastrointestinal disorders that include chronic or recurrent symptoms that cannot be explained by obvious structural or biochemical abnormalities1. In children, these are mainly spitting up, colic, and constipation.

Research indicates that 50% of children experience at least one form of FGID early on in life2,3. This causes significant distress to the child, not to mention the emotional and financial distress to the family.

Proper diet, teamed with the regular intake of these oligosaccharides have shown to reduce the symptoms of FGIDs. The softer stools also reduce the abdominal discomfort that usually accompanies constipation.

Reason enough to try it out, right?