When babies gets constipated parents often feel helpless, not knowing how they can give them some relief. Nothing is worse than seeing your baby uncomfortable or in pain due to constipation. If you need some help to move things along and you want to try a homemade remedy, you can actually make prune juice for babies. Prunes act as a natural laxative and can help bring relief to your baby as well as peace of mind to parents.
If your baby has been fussy lately and you’ve noticed that she hasn’t had regular bowel movements or she’s struggling when she does, she may be suffering from constipation, which is quite common in children under the age of five. The good news is that prune juice is a natural solution that’s quick and easy to make at home.
Prune juice is considered safe for babies over the age of one. The natural sugar sorbitol in prunes is what acts as a laxative, but that’s not where the health benefits of prunes for your child ends. According to WebMD prunes are not only a good source of energy but also a good source of fiber and are high in vitamins like potassium, vitamin K, vitamin A, niacin, riboflavin, and vitamin B6.
That depends on who you ask. While some experts recommend that you don’t give your three-month-old prune juice, others suggest it can be safe when given diluted in small amounts. Others feel that while prune juice, given in small quantities is generally considered safe for children over the age of 1, should only be given on the advice of your pediatrician to babies who haven’t yet reached their first birthday.
If you’ve spoken to your pediatrician and they agree that you can give your baby prune juice they will most likely give you a recommended serving amount as well. Healthline notes that “a good rule of thumb is 1 ounce of prune juice per month of life with a max daily dose of four ounces.” They also warn that you shouldn’t give the prune juice more than two times a day. However, the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) writes that prune juice can be given safely to babies as long as you follow some guidelines. They recommend one ounce of prune juice in one ounce of water, one or two times a day for babies younger than four months, and adding in some high-fiber foods if your baby is between four months to a year. Once your baby starts solids you can introduce mashed or pureed prunes as well to help with bowel movements.
Generally, it’s not recommended to give babies any juice before their first birthday, which is why some experts suggest holding off on the prune juice until your baby turns one. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says that babies under six months should only be fed formula or breast milk which is why some experts warn against giving prune juice to babies unless you consult with your pediatrician first to see if some diluted prune juice may be effective in relieving your baby’s constipation. Better Health Channel warns that prune juice given to babies under six months of age could actually irritate the bowel so it’s always best to consult a medical professional if you’re concerned.
Although prune juice may not work for every child, it can be a natural remedy to help your little one feel a bit better. You’ll always want to start with giving your baby a small amount first to ensure there are no allergies to the juice or adverse reactions. While you can buy prune juice at most grocery stores (make sure you get the pasteurized version as per Healthline) it’s pretty simple to make at home, and cost-effective, especially if you only want a small amount. To make prune juice at home you only need two ingredients — prunes and water. This recipe from The Toddle walks you through the step-by-step process of how to make your own prune juice with just water and prunes and how to store it once you’re done. After soaking your prunes for 12 to 24 hours you then blend them with the water in a blender, strain them, and voila! You have your own prune juice. You will definitely want to pay attention when straining the prune mixture to ensure no clumps of the prunes make it into the juice.
If you’re concerned your little one may be suffering from constipation you may want to try some homemade prune juice. If constipation persists and your child is uncomfortable you shouldn’t hesitate to consult your doctor.
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