Who better than the Fiber Guardian to answer some of the age old questions of excessive flatulence. It is no secret that fiber and farting go hand in hand so it is high time for a post on this subject. Is farting good for you? Is farting in fact healthy? Do you have a farting problem?
I am going to shed some light on this dark subject so the next time you decide to rip one you can do so with a smile on your face, because YES, farting is in fact good for you. Except perhaps, for making friends, but we will talk more about that later…
Firstly, here are few quick facts about farting. Some are interesting, some are quite surprising, and others are just plain gross.
- The average person farts about 14 times per day. And yes, women fart just as much as men, although they are not as proud to admit it as men are.
- Some people output almost 2 liters of gas per day!
- Excessive gas is mostly caused by the amount of air we suck in when we eat. Chewing gum or eating too quickly can exacerbate this problem.
- The smell of our own farts is much more pleasant to us than one from someone else. We like to smell our own farts because it is something familiar. Yup, I told you these facts were gross!
- For more facts see –Farting – how much is normal and what can I do about it?
Is Farting good for you?
Farting is good for you in that it means that there is healthy gut bacteria present in your system. This healthy bacteria works for your system and relieves bloating by expelling gas, but also help to suck out the vitamins and ultimately our energy from the food we eat. The process can involve flatulence and this is entirely normal.
Excessive farting can occur when eating healthy foods, and again this is not a sign that something is wrong. When you begin eating different foods, especially high fiber foods, you will fart more. The following foods are fantastic for you health wise, but when you first start eating them what follows will make your stomach a little rumbly for a while.
If you are going to be around people for most of the day be sure to drink a lot of water to help with the digestion of these foods. If you must do so, avoiding these types of foods might be the best play if you want to make and keep friends. However, remember that these foods are healthy and that passing gas is quite normal.
- Sweet Potatoes
- Beans of any kind
- Any type of grains especially pasta or bread
- Cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli because they take longer to digest
- Bran cereals
- Any food that is high in fiber
The lesson here is to not be afraid to fart. Breaking wind is an extremely natural, albeit pretty smelly, bodily function. As the Fiber Guardian I encourage you to eat high fiber foods and pass as much gas as you want. However, read some of the warning signs below and see your doctor with any questions.
Do you Have a Farting Problem?
Here are few warning signs to watch out for and to check with your doctor if you become concerned. I am not one of those the suggests running to your doctor at every little warning sign, but I am also protecting myself when I suggest that you should be.
- Farting more than 23 times per day could be a warning sign of a more serious issue. I say could because when you first change your diet to one that is rich in fruits and vegetables you WILL fart more. Your system will eventually adjust, but those on a high fiber diet will fart more, it is just the way the wind breaks.
- You start to see other symptoms such as rectal bleeding, extreme sudden weight loss or a major change in bowel habits.
- Your IBS symptoms get worse or you just feel uncomfortable most of the time.
Most things you read will say that excessive farting can be a symptom of more serious diseases. While this is true, there is no reason to jump to that conclusion by something you read online. As a mild hypochondriac myself, I have had this issue before in assuming the worst, only to have a doctor look at me like I was crazy.
If worried, see a doctor, but try to adjust your eating habits first and go from there. We are often the cause of our problems whether we like to admit it or not.
Why you Shouldn’t Hold Your Farts in-
Holding farts in can put unnecessary pressure on your colon and digestive system. As your mother probably told you when you were growing up, don’t hold it in! Just let it go and suffer the relational consequences.
If you hold it in the gas will eventually escape through your intestinal wall and pass into the blood causing bad breath. I don’t know about you but I don’t want my gas going anywhere other than right out of me!
How to Pass Gas if You Feel Bloated or Constipated, Strategies for Passing Gas
If you find yourself with the feeling of needing to pass gas and are unable to do so try some of the following tips to reducing bloating and passing gas:
- Walking– Walking is a simple and easy way to let gravity do its work and gases to work themselves out of you. It is also a lot of fun and fantastic for your health. I try to walk at least 15-20 minutes every day to get things moving.
- Stretching— there are a variety of yoga stretches you can do in order to relieve gas pressure. Just make sure to do these in a room populated by just you because they work extremely well. I have added a stretching and mediating habit to my nightly routine and it has greatly decreased my stress levels which also helps to reduce gas.
- Over the Counter Medications– You can try an over the counter medication like Simethicone for gas relief. I would not suggest relying on these all the time, but they can be really helpful in a pinch.
- Probiotics– You can try taking a probiotic to give your stomach the aid it needs to fight back against the “bad” bacteria. This is especially useful if you recently had to take antibiotics because it can help to balance out the bacteria present in your gut. There is a lot of research out there that points to the effectiveness of taking probiotics, but there is also a lot that is not understood. From what I have seen, there isn’t any reason not to try it and see if it works for you.
- Water– everything always comes back to drinking water. It is the simplest of all remedies but lack of water is often the root of all problems. Upping your water intake will help to move things along in your system and cause a bowel movement.
Just remember that farting is indeed healthy for you and it is nothing to be shy about.
Let em’ rip!
-Jordan, Your Fiber Guardian