The last thing any mum really thinks about at Christmas is helping kid maintain a healthy digestive. Actually, it’s the last thing you probably think about full stop.


But as we embrace the over-indulgent season, it is important to at least keep in mind our children’s digestive system, especially if they are prone to abdominal pain, trapped wind or gas - you don't want to make it worse or irritate it further.



“Christmas can be a really hard time to maintain digestive health balance with late nights, rich, fatty foods.  For most families, the festive season is a time to put healthy eating regimes on-hold, have fun and indulge," consultant dietitian Caoimhe McDonald from Personal Health explains. 


"However rich foods, high sugar and the wrong types of fat can disrupt the ecology of the gut causing digestive problems such as bloating, trapped wind and gas. 


"No child enjoys being bloated, but the condition seems to come hand-in-hand with the festive period and every one can benefit from getting their digestive system prepared.”



Almost every child will have abdominal pain at some point or another, but when it recurs - and coeliac disease and IBD have been ruled out - paediatricians call it Non Organic Recurrent Abdominal Pain of Childhood which has several variants including paediatric Irritable Bowel Syndrome.


There’s mounting evidence that a healthy ecosystem of gut bacteria can bring a wide range of health benefits, and improving your child’s inner ecology is easier than it seems.


1. Identify stressors in your child's life

Life events at home or at school or interactions with other children can contribute to the health of your child's digestive system. 


2. Watch what they eat

Junk food, takeaways and convenience meals can all contribute to IBS symptoms. Make sure you introduce fresh fruit, vegetables and adequate water or fluid intake with help regulate their digestive cycle.


3. Biological factors such as altered bowel flora can also be important

If symptoms persist, probiotics such as Children’s Alflorex can help.