It is every parent’s dream to provide the best of everything for their infants. They ensure that their babies have the best-quality food, and never miss a well-baby visit during that crucial first year. From buying prune juice for babies with digestive ailments to maintaining a strict diet to ensure the required vitamins, minerals, and essential ingredients are provided to them, parents leave no stone unturned in nurturing the infants.
Is Prune Juice Safe for Babies?
A common problem that most infants between 0 and a few months old face is constipation. It gives them sleepless nights, and, by default, the parents too have to stay awake trying to relieve constipation and soothe the irritable baby. As a concerned and caring parent, every mother or father strives to find a solution to this prevalent problem.
Many turn to medicines or traditional diet ingredients that could help relieve the baby of this discomfort, which is also painful. Prunes are known to fight constipation in adults, and prunes are often recommended in juice form to infants. But, is prune juice safe for babies? Read on to know more.
What Makes Prune Juice Good for Constipation in Babies?
1. Sorbitol as a Natural Laxative
Dried plums are known as prunes. The juice extracted from these dried plums is called prune juice, and is known to have a wonderful effect in curing constipation among babies. It acts as a natural laxative, and is considered safe for small babies. And, it is known to treat bowel issues effectively.
The high proportion of sorbitol in prunes is what eases bowel movement, making it a regular and daily occurrence. And, it is especially critical for babies to eject the unwanted substances in their digestive tracts. Other vital nutrients present in prune juice such as potassium, iron, and dietary fiber also help provide the baby’s daily required nutrients. Also, the natural laxative properties of prunes help make the stool soft, and promote easy bowel movements.
The components in prune juice are considered to have a direct or indirect effect in improving the overall gastrointestinal health of those who consume it on a regular basis. So, giving prune juice to babies in addition to their regular diet of formula milk or mother’s milk, helps give them the necessary fiber, sorbitol, and other components, which act as a natural laxative to cure constipation in babies as well as adults.
2. Phenolic Acids as Antibacterial Agents
The characteristic phenolic compounds and their metabolites may also act as antibacterial agents in both gastrointestinal and urinary tracts, thus improving the overall health and the strength of the digestive system. When given to babies in small quantities, constipation is often relieved.
Prune juice acts as a natural laxative and home remedy to cure constipation in infants. From 0 to 6 months, the juice intake should be limited to one or two tablespoons, diluted with water. If the baby continues to have irritable and improper bowel movements, a daily dose of prune juice may be recommended. The dosage can be increased as the infant grows older.
Do not overdo the dosage, as it may induce a laxative diarrhea and watery bowel movements in your baby. To determine the exact amount, it is best to consult with your doctor. He or she can determine the right dosage depending on the baby’s health and other features such as weight and age.
Healthy Prune Juice Recipe
Here is a quick and easy prune juice or puree for babies that you can make.
“Dried” Prune Puree or Juice
- 1 bag of dried prunes (approximately 500 grams)
Soak dried prunes in warm water until they are plump again. Once plump and tender, peel the skin and remove the pits.
Blend in a blender and puree if needed. Then, add water as needed to make it a consistency that the baby can consume.
For the first time, you can mix this into the baby’s favorite food so that the baby has the required dosage.
How Much & How Fast Does Prune Juice Help Babies with Constipation?
So, How Much Prune Juice Should You Give Your Baby?
It is recommended to give four to six ounces of prune juice to children between one and six years old. Unfiltered prune juice is best, and works best when consumed on an empty stomach. Give prune juice 24 hours to start working.
How Frequently Should You Give It to Your Baby?
Prune juice can be offered occasionally when the baby has difficulty passing stools. But, if the constipation tends to be an ongoing problem, prune juice can be also be taken daily for prevention in the suggested dosage. Just be sure to get the okay from your baby’s pediatrician first.
Certain Side Effects of Prune Juice for Babies
Prune juice works as a laxative. The sorbitol in prunes can aid in treating irregular bowel movements. However, if taken in large quantities, it tends to cause diarrhea.
If you see these symptoms or your baby starts having watery stools, reduce or stop the prune juice immediately. In the case where watery stools persist for more than a day or the baby appears dull and malnourished, consult your doctor immediately.
A Final Word on Prune Juice for Treating Constipation in Babies
Managing a constipated baby can be a really challenging task. And finding a safe and effective remedy to this problem is a goal of all parents. Try out these homemade recipes that will help the baby by adding prune juice in their daily diet.
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Ria, S., “Prune Juice For Baby Constipation – Everything You Need To Know About,” Mom Junction, December 3, 2016; http://www.momjunction.com/articles/prune-juice-for-baby-constipation_00372061/#gref, last accessed August 30, 2017
Bishop, K., “Relief for Constipation in Formula-Fed Babies,” LIVESTRONG, August 14, 2017; http://www.livestrong.com/article/526588-relief-for-constipation-in-formula-fed-babies/, last accessed August 30, 2017
“5 Facts About Prune Juice For Baby Constipation” FollowMuM, March 29, 2016; https://www.followmum.com/prune-juice-for-baby-constipation/, last accessed August 30, 2017