Safe Foods for a Toddler With an Upset Stomach
An upset stomach can make your toddler miserable. Symptoms might include vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pain, which can cause your toddler to become fussy and unable to sleep. In most cases, you must wait until the upset stomach has passed, but certain foods might help soothe his tummy and ease his discomfort. If your toddler's upset stomach doesn't begin to get better or gets worse, call his pediatrician right away.
Clear broth helps prevent dehydration. When your toddler has an upset stomach, she might vomit of have diarrhea several times a day. Repeated bouts of vomiting or diarrhea can lead to dehydration. Serve your toddler warm chicken broth and encourage her to sip it slowly. The broth will ensure that your child gets plenty of liquids but will also help soothe her irritated stomach so she feels better.
Foods that don't contain a lot of fiber act as binding agents to help firm up your toddler's stool so her diarrhea eases, the American Academy of Family Physician notes on its Family Doctor website. High-fiber foods soften the stool so it passes through the intestines efficiently. If your toddler doesn't get enough fiber in his diet when he isn't sick, he can develop constipation because the stool becomes hard. Serving low-fiber foods with diarrhea helps your toddler's stool firm up so his symptoms ease. White pasta is a toddler-friendly food that can help ease diarrhea. A 1/4-cup serving of cooked noodles is an appropriate size for a toddler. Two or three saltine crackers, a slice of white toast and a small bowl of unsweetened breakfast cereal without milk are additional low-fiber foods that can help reduce the severity of your child's diarrhea.
When your toddler vomits or has diarrhea with her upset stomach, she loses electrolytes that help balance the fluids in her body. Replace electrolytes by offering her bananas. If your toddler is unable to eat, her doctor might recommend oral rehydration solutions, which replace potassium and other electrolytes lost through vomiting and diarrhea. Ask your child's pediatrician before offering oral rehydration solutions to be sure they are an appropriate treatment for her.
Bland foods can help settle your toddler's stomach. Plain baked potatoes and white rice are safe foods, which are bland enough that they won't irritate her tummy. Applesauce, gelatin and toast are also safe for your child to eat while she is recovering from an upset stomach.
Foods to Avoid
Don't offer your toddler fatty or greasy foods because they can make vomiting and diarrhea worse by irritating her stomach. Highly seasoned foods can also make your child's symptoms worse. Don't serve your toddler milk or other dairy foods. Foods or beverages with caffeine, such as chocolate or soda, can cause your child's symptoms to worsen. Sugary foods decrease your child's immune system, making it harder for her to fight off an upset stomach; avoid them.