We’ve all had those days- too much beans or something, and your stomach feels fuller than a balloon. Then the urge to let one rip comes, but you’re in the office and the eternal humiliation would kill you, so… you hold it in.
Don’t, according to University of Newcastle nutrition and dietetics professor Clare Collins. In a post on The Conversation, she explains that pent-up gas can pass through your gut wall and get reabsorbed into your circulation. It’s then released when you exhale, whether you like it or not.
So, the result- you literally have shitty breath. Which is really a terrible way to try to win friends and influence people.
If constant gas is a problem, it might be the food you’ve been eating though.
You are what you do and eat, according to Dr Chris Kong, a consultant at the Singapore General Hospital’s Department of Gastronenterology and Hepatology. For instance, gobbling your food or smoking can increase the amount of air you swallow. The air may travel to the large intestine and then be expelled as gas.
Certain foods and drinks also generate gas. These include onions and carbonated drinks as well.
It’s also normal for us to break wind up to 20 times a day, and passing excessive gas is rarely a sign of any underlying health problem, says Dr Kong. He adds that the total volume of flatus (that’s fart to us) we pass out in a day can vary from 476ml to 1,491ml.
It is possible to decrease the frequency of farting. Dr Kong advises keeping a food diary for two weeks. With this, you track the frequency and volume of gas you pass daily. Also, note the types of food you’ve eaten. After this, it’ll be obvious which gas-inducing foods to avoid!