No matter how much you try to deny it, you fart. Everyone does. And while it makes most of us blush when it happens around others, passing gas is nothing to be ashamed of. As a matter of fact, it’s a sign of good health and has its own range of health benefits. That’s why Dr. Nandi wants you to be your own health hero and stop holding it in.
Gas Reduces Bloating
Gas naturally forms by the body’s digestion process, and it needs a place to go. If you don’t let it out via passing gas, it will work its way back into the intestinal tract, causing uncomfortable bloating.
It’s a Relief
When you hold in your gas, refusing to let your body do what it needs to do, you cause pressure in both your rectum and your intestines. After a time, this can cause hemorrhoids or even a distended bowel.
The Smell Is Good for You
While most people tolerate the smell of their own gas better than that of other’s, perhaps everyone should take a sniff once in a while. In the chemical make-up of gas are small amounts of hydrogen sulfide. While this is toxic in high levels, the minute traces released help protect against cell damage, and may be able to prevent strokes and heart attacks.
Lets You Know What You Need
From the frequency to the odor, passing gas can act as a health barometer, and based on certain facts, can clue you into what changes you need to make to improve your health. For instance, if you’re not passing gas at least five to 10 times a day—14 is normal—you should increase your fiber intake. If you always seem to have an unpleasant smell, perhaps you’re eating too much red meat.
Regardless of who you are, passing gas is nothing to be embarrassed about. It’s something that happens to everybody every day and is a sign that your body’s doing what it’s supposed to be doing.
- Through the five to 20 farts a day the average person has, about half a liter of gas is released
- The typical chemical make-up of human gas is 59 percent nitrogen, 21 percent hydrogen, 9 percent carbon dioxide, 7 percent methane, and 4 percent oxygen
- Foods that are rich in complex carbohydrates are known to cause more gas, including beans, artichokes, dairy products, sweet potatoes, wheat, soy, and nuts
- Farting should not cause discomfort; if it does, it may be a sign of a gastrointestinal issue.
- The sound that often accompanies the passing of gas comes from vibrations of the rectum, caused by pushing the air out