27 answers

Whole Milk + Constipation

I recently switched my one year old to whole milk. She is having a horrible time with constipation. The poor thing strains and cries when she goes to the bathroom, but not EVERY time. She is eating solid foods and I make sure she eats apples, prunes, etc. and even gave her apple/prune juice. Can whole milk cause this? Should I switch to soy milk? She has been on whole milk for about two weeks. Any advice is greatly appreciated!

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Yes, whole milk can cause this. But don't resort to soy - it is NOT a healthy food for anyone to ingest, children or adults, learn more about it here http://www.westonaprice.org/soy/index.html It is NOT the health food companies have told us soy is, as a matter of fact it's toxic.

Don't forget... plain water is also necessary daily, it keeps the body from becoming dehydrated (when you're dehydrated stools can become hard and dry.

Also, cheese can cause constipation.

I'd try goat's milk. It's closer to human milk and much easier to digest.

Hope this helps,
E.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter went thru the same thing and my pediatrican told me she could drink 2%. Switching to the 2% has helped and she is now pretty regular. He said that if I was concerned with her getting enough nutrition that I could give the Polyvysol (?) and put it in with her milk, juice or whatever. The pediatrician also said to give her some apple juice which should help with constipation; however, bananas will possible constipate her some.

1 mom found this helpful

More Answers

Hi M.,

Almond milk or rice milk would be better or even organic whole milk. Sometimes it's not the milk that's the problem but the chemicals used to process it. Milk does however, leave a residue in the intestines that can build up so that it makes it difficult to get everything out. If she's been on a milk based formula that could have already begun.

Extra fiber, grains, etc would help a lot and whole fruits not just juices. (However 6 oz of prune juice daily will help.)I would dodge the soy as the jury is still out whether it's good for little ones or not, especially if it's a regular thing.

It's so painful for us when our little ones hurt! God bless!

M.

P.S. I know corn syrup works for some but it can be fatal in little ones who can't digest it. It can contain botulism spores just like honey and really shouldn't be tried until over the age of two.

2 moms found this helpful

We had that problem too. I had it as a child and my daughter has it since I switched her too. We tried all the milk and finally we can drink skim milk. Talk to your doctor and see what he recommends, but the skim milk works for us. There is something with the pasturizing and the fat in the whole milk that can bind some people up. It happend to us. Who knows, it may be she can't handle cows milk. You just have to try different things. Also, corn syrup in the milk a teaspoon per bottle, will help keep her going.

Good luck.

E.

2 moms found this helpful

Yes, it happened to my daughter. It's not serious and it's temporary. Don't stop giving her milk but be sure the rest of her diet has fiber in it. Watch out for apple juice, it gives these kids toddler diahrea. We learned our lesson and now use white grape juice at 4 oz a day. Wouldn't hurt to call her pediatrician.

1 mom found this helpful

Be sure that she is getting a lot of water, that will help. My daughter had this same problem when she was that age. Try massaging her tummy and we played a game called "bicycle" where she would lay on her back and I would move her feet in a bicycle motion (knees bending toward the chest) and sing a little song about "bicycle, bicycle...la,la,la"... the bicycle motion helps sometime to get things moving and she just thought it was a fun game. Good luck!

1 mom found this helpful

hi my name is Kay i am a mother of 2 a grandmother of 3 but almost every kid i know calls me either A. or Meme honey this is normal apple juice worked for my girls . the doctor told my oldest daughter to give her kids a little Kyroe suryp in their bottles that worked wonders for her

1 mom found this helpful

Do NOT swicth to soy milk. It is loaded with hormones and your growing child does NOT need that! Yes, whole milk can cause constipation, but the first thing you should do is up her water and juice consumption. If you fear her not getting enough calcium get her started on a multi vitamin. Soy is NOT a good food for growing children although the media and health nuts would have you beleive otherwise. Research soy yourself before you introduce it to your diet or your family's in such high amounts as with replacing milk.

1 mom found this helpful

I do not know if the whole milk causes the constipation. I would guess that her body is going through a transition and adjusting to the change. Do not start soy milk, that is not a good reason to change milk. Try 2% milk AND increasing her water intake. My 18 month old daughter does not like milk and gets very little of it everyday but she does eat cheese and yogurt a lot. So cutting back on milk and increasing water and other dairy might help. I don't like soy because of the incredible amount of hormones in it especially for little girls. Also try tummy massage and doing bicycles with her legs. good luck, constipation is no fun!

1 mom found this helpful

The same thing happened when I switched my youngest to whole milk from breast milk. My doctor suggested juice (the sugar helps it go right through them). I continued to give her whole milk as much as possible, but gave her a cup of Pear juice 1-2 times a day. I read online that the pear juice helps constipation --vs. Apple which was said to not help it and can contribute to it. Other good food items that help: canned pears, canned mandarin oranges. Best to avoid: bananas.

1 mom found this helpful

yes it can. we would switch back and forth from day to day. apple juice all day one day and milk all day the next... it worked great... however she still hates milk and wont drink it... (but who could blame her yuck!)

1 mom found this helpful

Milk causes constipation for my toddler. He did OK on Gentle Ease formula and so I kept him on that in the Toddler version until 2 and then moved him to Rice Milk. He is able to eat Cheese and yogurt ok, but plain milk really gives him issues. Hope you can find a solution that worked for you.
J.

1 mom found this helpful

Did she also quit using a bottle at the same time? When kids wean from bottle to cup, they usually drink LESS, so that could be the culprit (if that's the case). Try pouring HOT water into her potty when she 'goes' to help relax her bottom (sphincter muscles). Also, try not to show any angst about her problem. If she can sense YOUR stress, it could cause her to 'hold it in'.

I see you got some conflicting advice about apple juice. Some things (including bananas) will cause constipation in one kids and diarrhea in another. It's a 'trial and error/case-by-case' thing. Just notice if something helps loosen her bowels and give her THAT!

Good luck and God bless!

1 mom found this helpful

First of all do not give your daughter apple juice or apple when she is constipated. Apple juice makes you constipated. Prune juice can stop constipation but apple juice is a big no no. The best thing for you to do is switch her back to the milk she used to drink. Remember, if your child has diarrhea, that is the time you give her apple juice.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter went thru the same thing and my pediatrican told me she could drink 2%. Switching to the 2% has helped and she is now pretty regular. He said that if I was concerned with her getting enough nutrition that I could give the Polyvysol (?) and put it in with her milk, juice or whatever. The pediatrician also said to give her some apple juice which should help with constipation; however, bananas will possible constipate her some.

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter had the same problem for at least a few weeks when she started drinking whole milk. For some reason, when I completely stopped breastfeeding, she was fine. No more constipation. Perhaps she started drinking more water and juice when she stopped nursing. Anyway, if the timing was coincidence, her body finally got used the the whole milk and she hasn't had any problems since. I've gradually increased the amount of milk she gets just to make sure she doesn't have problems. Try less milk and more yogurt and other dairy so that she'll still get enough calcium. Plain yogurt is so nutritious.

1 mom found this helpful

Yes, whole milk can cause this. But don't resort to soy - it is NOT a healthy food for anyone to ingest, children or adults, learn more about it here http://www.westonaprice.org/soy/index.html It is NOT the health food companies have told us soy is, as a matter of fact it's toxic.

Don't forget... plain water is also necessary daily, it keeps the body from becoming dehydrated (when you're dehydrated stools can become hard and dry.

Also, cheese can cause constipation.

I'd try goat's milk. It's closer to human milk and much easier to digest.

Hope this helps,
E.

1 mom found this helpful

I would stop giving her milk for a week and see if it clears up, then you have a clean answer. If I did it wouldn't be much, there are plenty of chewable supplements nowadays. When you give her milk make sure it is organic, if not, conventional milk has RbgH in it. I give my kids organic broccoli at dinner, as a substitute for milk/ calcium. Or find the equivalent in magnesium citrate.
I would go to Whole Foods and let an assistant educate you to these natural remedies and nutrition, that DO WORK. My doctor when we had your same problem put my 1 yr old on Miralax. Nutrition, a change in diet, or supplements were never discussed. I at the time knew nothing to ask,so I complied. Here is a link to an interesting site that will illuminate some of the things "added" to food.
http://www.responsibletechnology.org/GMFree/Home/index.cfm
http://www.responsibletechnology.org/GMFree/Home/index.cfm

1 mom found this helpful

I would try stopping the milk and see if that helps with the constipation. I would also limit her intake of dairy products. If you do this for about a week then you should be able to tell if that is whats causing the constipation. If she eats bananas,rice, applesauce/apples on a daily basis that could be causing constipation as well. Most drs. recommend the BRAT diet after someone has had diarreha. The BRAT diet consist of Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, Tea. These are foods that can constipate.

1 mom found this helpful

Try 2% milk for a few days to see if that is better with the constipation. Alot of time switching from formula straight to whole milk can wreak havoc on their tummies and cause constipation. Switch to 2% and see if it gets better. Soy milk can make constipation worse so I wouldn't give her soy milk either. And with soy you have to really watch closely for allergies. I had my son on soy and noticed that his face kept breaking out. When I took him off of it his face cleared up. So he had an allergy to the soy. Also, if she does continue to get constipated on milk put a little bit of kayro syrup in one bottle a day to get her moving until her little body gets adjusted to taking milk. Cow's milk is extremely rough on the digestive system. In fact as long as she's eating cheese and yogurt and other sources of dairy she may not even need milk. Also, make sure she is drinking water too. Good luck and I hope this helps.

1 mom found this helpful

My son couldn't digest lactose in milk and he use to get really constipated. You could try the lactose free milk or give her lactaid tablets, before she drinks milk and see if the constipation goes away. The tablets are over the counter and available at the pharmacy without prescription.

Pears, mandarin oranges, melon, peas, oatmeal, and a ton of water. I would cut out the juice and the apples. She probably just needs to adjust to the milk and solid foods and you should be able to balance things out with different foods. I hope this helps!

M.,
My son who is 3yrs old had the same problem and i couldnt figure it out i asked his dr she said it wasnt the milk the gave him medicine to mix up in water to help him go but it didnt work later i switched drs and his new dr is amazing she told me to try 2% helped some not alot so hes drinking 1% and goes great now im so thankful my nephew had the exact same problem and now that my other son is turning 1 saturday instead of trying the others hes going straight to 1% now i was allergic to cow milk as a child i was raised on goat milk if 1% dont work you may wan to try goat milk it taste alot diffrent though good luck
Tear

stay away from apple juice it is constipating,i wouldn't do soy, unless there's an allergy, try a little karo syrup in his milk it is an lod remedy but works ,white or dark will work, hope this helps, also if little one will drink prune juice warm it a little that works too.

Yes whole milk can cause this. My daughter has the same problem. I switched her to soy milk lactose free as her Dr said and she does a whole lot better. Ask the Dr maybe they have some advice. When my girl wants icecream i give her a lacsotive before she eats it.

I don't know if this is standard or not but your child is like mine, she was even constipated on the soy also. She is constipated no matter how much apple, prune, pear or any other juice that I give her OR no matter what kind of milk that she drinks. In fact, I stopped all milk products period for a week and there was no change. The dr told me to put Miralax in her juice and I started doing that. It is supposed to be alright for every day use because it is not a laxative, it is a softener only. So we had trouble regulating it. Everyday and it was runny and often. Every other day seemed to do the trick but then you have to figure out what is a good dose for your child. If you get too much you will find you are running to the bathroom with her every 15 minutes.
I have the same constipation problems. I think maybe it has more to do with heredity and the make up of the child myself rather than what they eat or drink. But this is what has seemed to work with me.
She is now going to the potty on a regular basis for the last 2 weeks... YEAY! Let's hope it lasts.
Good luck!

I have this same problem...and I am going to try 2% and see if that works but I have tried mixing aloe vera juice and apple...also more fiber and prune juice with apple...she used to eat a prune every day and this helped...

are you feeding her iron fortified cereals and biscuits? I find that these are the cause of constipation. You can switch her to a 12m+ formula and see if this helps...but it is probably the iron. I wouldn't personally put her on soymilk, just because of the added estrogen...rice dream, almond milk??

First off let me say hello
i have three children my oldest is 17 and when he was a baby he had the exact same problem.I found that soy milk was perfect for him. He quit hurting and wasn't constipated anymore and besides that he became alot more healthier and also, whole milk is harder for a little to digest and bad for their teeth if given too much.I'd say try it and see what happens or talk to your babies dr.

Required Fields

Our records show that we already have a Mamapedia or Mamasource account created for you under the email address you entered.

Please enter your Mamapedia or Mamasource password to continue signing in.

Required Fields

, you’re almost done...

Since this is the first time you are logging in to Mamapedia with Facebook Connect, please provide the following information so you can participate in the Mamapedia community.

As a member, you’ll receive optional email newsletters and community updates sent to you from Mamapedia, and your email address will never be shared with third parties.

By clicking "Continue to Mamapedia", I agree to the Mamapedia Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.