How To Introduce Banana and Does It Cause Constipation in Babies?

How to introduce bananas article by Starting Solids Australia

When you think of baby foods….you often think banana! One of the most widely consumed foods in the world and an easy safe food to offer to bub when they are starting their solids journey. It’s not hard to see why bananas are so beloved- they are sweet, flavoursome, come with their own sturdy packaging and that’s before we even get to the nutrition side of things! 

Bananas are a nutrition power house; packed with energy from the carbohydrates as well as many of the essential nutrients needed for your little one’s growth and development. You’ll find folate, B vitamins, vitamin C and potassium in your humble banana. Remember that vitamin C helps with iron absorption, so offering some banana with your iron packed meals is a great way to help boost that all important iron absorption. 

However, the poor little banana has gotten a bad rap lately as a food to avoid for constipation, but the evidence for this is weak. Most little ones will have no issue with banana, but if you feel it is causing havoc on your bub’s bowels you can simply offer less or just less often and see if this makes a difference. Research suggests that for some individuals, yes, banana can exacerbate constipation, but it might surprise you to find out that there is also evidence to support the benefits of banana on bowel movements. This is because of all the soluble fibre! Soluble fibre absorbs fluid in the gut which helps stool stay large and soft. This can help it move through the bowel with ease. There is also evidence that the riper the banana is, the less constipating it may be.  So once again, nutrition isn’t black and white! 


The take home when it comes to bananas and bowels:

  • Some individuals might find banana increases constipation. If you suspect this is your bub, reduce the amount you offer for a few days and see if it makes a difference.
  • For most babies, there will be no issues with constipation when it comes to banana.
  • There is more evidence to support banana as useful to reduce constipation rather than causing it.
  • The riper the banana the less constipating it may be.
  • Constipation is rarely caused by one thing and it is often multifactorial. Book in for a 1:1 consult if you’re finding it hard to manage.


Some ideas on how to serve it:

Because banana is nice and soft, it isn’t a high choking hazard so these are just some ideas to help you think about variety when serving it up to your little one! 


As you get started:

  • Puree or fork mash 
  • Half a banana sliced into half and then again long ways 
  • Spears
  • Banana handle (cut an unpeeled banana in half. Then take the peel off about 1/3 of the way down leaving 2/3 of the peel on for bub to hold. This keeps their hands pretty clean too).

Various ways to cut and serve bananas to babies - resource article by Starting Solids Australia


From around 9+ months

  • As bub gets more confident eating and developing their pincer grip, think about offering smaller bite sized pieces 
  • Can still serve it any of the above ways 

How to introduce banana to babies - article by Starting Solids Australia

9-12 months+

As their chewing gets better, we can move back up towards bigger sized pieces and even offering a whole banana. Just remember that one medium banana is 1 serve of fruit. It is recommended that toddlers have ½ serve of fruit per day. There is nothing wrong with more fruit, it might just fill them up so they don’t have as big an opportunity to get all the other foods groups in over the day! Toddlers are busy and can have less of an appetite so we want to optimise meals and snacks to get everything they need in. 




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