Vegetables, fruits, high-fiber cereals and even certain spices can soften stool, reports Pelvic Exercises. Some fiber supplements can soften stool as well. Soft stool can be helped along by eating 25 to 30 grams of fiber per day and drinking plenty of water.
Green beans, spinach, broccoli, brussel sprouts and cabbage soften stool, as do apricots, peaches, pears, prunes and plums, according to Pelvic Exercises. Chili and curry spices, as well as bran and multigrain cereals and breads, which are high in fiber, can also soften waste matter and thus ease its passage through the bowel.
To reach the recommended 25 to 30 grams of fiber intake, Pelvic Exercises suggests eating two servings of fruit, five servings of vegetables and four to five servings of high-fiber cereal every day. These foods are loaded with insoluble fibers. Unlike soluble fiber, insoluble fiber is not easily digestible and helps the bowels move by increasing the speed of waste removal in the body. Insoluble fiber is commonly found in fruit and vegetable skins.
However, eating too much insoluble fiber at once can have adverse effects, warns Pelvic Exercises. Constipation results from too much insoluble fiber and too little fluid intake, while diarrhea can occur from consuming excessive amounts of fiber and water. To avoid this, patients should increase the intake of fiber gradually to allow the bowels to adapt and prevent bloating and pain.