Seasonal Greetings

The kids are part way through the winter break–a time of special events, visiting, sleeping in and staying up later, and a season of special foods and treats.

We are months and months away from the summer’s fruits and what kid doesn’t give their parent the business about vegetables? This leads to the holiday phenomena we witness here with frequency: belly pain and constipation.

Fight back with fiber-rich foods, extra water, and playing hard. Kids who are reluctant to take the time to take the time and visit the bathroom daily should be so directed. Take advantage of the natural gastrocolic reflex, the gastrointestinal tract is primed to move things along thirty minutes after a meal. Grab a comic book and have a sit.

More information is available from NASPGHAN, the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition here.

Happy New Year!



About Lisa M. Asta, MD

Lisa M. Asta, M.D. is board-certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and is a Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics, for which she is also a Media Representative (she has been interviewed for “Kids Health” on Health Radio, and quoted in Parenting Magazine, USA Today, and the New York Times, among other publications). She is a Clinical Professor of Pediatrics at the University of California at San Francisco and past pediatric chair at John Muir Medical Center in Walnut Creek. She graduated from Temple University School of Medicine and the Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Asta is also a writer whose fiction has appeared in Inkwell, Philadelphia Stories, Schuylkill, and Zeniada. Her essays have appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association, Hippocrates, the San Jose Mercury News, and The New Physician Magazine. She is an occasional contributor to KQED public radio’s Perspectives series, and has written articles for Bay Area Parent, Valley Parent, Parents’ Press, and Parents Express, as well as online at,, and She wrote a chapter in The Field Guide to the Normal Newborn, ed. Gary Emmet, M.D. currently has two how-to videos for parents in production which feature Dr. Asta. For more on Dr. Asta’s writing, visit
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