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Are Prunes a Good Source of Fiber?

author image Sandy Keefe
Sandy Keefe, M.S.N., R.N., has been a freelance writer for over five years. Her articles have appeared in numerous health-related magazines, including "Advance for Nurses" and "Advance for Long-Term Care Management." She has written short stories in anthologies such as "A Cup of Comfort for Parents of Children with Special Needs."
Are Prunes a Good Source of Fiber?
Close up of dried prunes. Photo Credit Volosina/iStock/Getty Images

Prunes, otherwise known as dried plums, are rich in both soluble and insoluble fiber. The dietary fiber from prunes remains inside your intestines, serving a number of functions as it passes through the bowels. The amount of fiber varies, depending on how the plums are dried and processed.

Fiber Content

Raw dried prunes offer the most fiber, with 0.7 grams in a single prune and an impressive 12.4 grams of fiber in 1-cup serving. If you stew dried prunes before eating them, you’ll get 9.4 grams of fiber in 1 cup of the fruit. Prunes that are canned in heavy syrup contain 8.9 grams of fiber in 1 cup. Baby food versions of prunes contain concentrated amounts of fiber. An ounce of junior baby food prunes in tapioca or the same size serving of strained prunes with tapioca each has 0.8 grams of fiber.


The American diet is woefully short of fiber, with the typical U.S. resident ingesting only 14 grams of fiber a day. Children over the age of 1 year need 10 grams of fiber daily plus an additional gram for each year of age. Your 13-month old, for example, needs 11 grams of fiber each day. Eating half of a 6-ounce jar of baby food prunes will provide 2.4 grams, or almost 22 percent of her daily requirement. Women need 30 grams of fiber a day until age 50, when the recommendation decreases to 21 grams per day. Men should eat at least 38 grams a day until they turn 50, and 30 grams a day thereafter. A three-fourth cup serving of dried prunes delivers 32 percent of a young woman’s daily requirement and contains more than 25 percent of a young man’s daily fiber allotment.

Beneficial Effects

The insoluble fiber in prunes binds water inside your intestines, creating larger, softer stools that move easily through your bowels. This effect can prevent and treat constipation, helping you avoid chronic disorders such as diverticulosis, diverticulitis and hemorrhoids. The soluble fiber from the fruit combines with bile acids in the intestines, forming a gel that’s passed in your stools. The net effect is a reduction in your blood cholesterol level that lowers your risk of developing coronary heart disease, stroke, heart attack or heart failure.


If your diet is low in fiber, introduce high-fiber foods such as prunes gradually to allow your gastrointestinal tract time to get used to the additional load. If you increase your fiber too rapidly, you may experience bloating and gas. Drink plenty of water and other liquids along with your fiber to provide what your body needs for optimal bowel health. Prunes can pose a choking hazard for younger children, so use baby food versions of the fruit or serve stewed prunes cut into bite-size pieces.

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