Excessive Farting: Causes and Prevention 0

People typically pass gas about 20 times a day, and flatulence is an ordinary occurrence. However, for some people who keep farting, it’s a severe problem that can be socially and painfully embarrassing. Flatulence is a normal byproduct of the foods we eat. When our digestive system breaks our food down for energy, it produces gas, which is mainly composed of methane, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. However, excessive gas can be caused by many other issues.

Why I Can’t Stop Farting?

1. Swallowing of Air

Swallowing air is a major source of gas producing flatulence. While it is normal to swallow small amounts of air when eating, eating too fast will create excess air in the stomach. Additionally, excessive swallowing of air may cause hiccups, causing you to swallow even more air. If the swallowed air is not burped up, it moves through the digestive tract and is released as flatulence.

2. Diet

Certain carbohydrates and high-fibre containing foods, such as Brussel sprouts, cabbage, broccoli, asparagus, whole grains, and beans, might not break down very well in your digestive tract. When these foods come into contact with the bacteria in the colon they ferment, they may produce lots of flatulence. Some other gas-forming foods include:

  •   Alcohol (especially beer and ale)
  •   Fruit juice and sodas
  •   Dairy (especially if you are lactose intolerant)
  •   Lentils
  •   Onions

3. Intestinal Diseases

Another major source of intestinal gas is lactose intolerance. It results in a decreased ability to digest lactose, a natural sugar found in dairy products such as cheese, milk or ice cream, and in certain processed foods such as cereals, breads, and salad dressings. The undigested lactose produces carbon dioxide and hydrogen when it reaches the large intestines, causing griping pains, and excessive flatulence.

4. Constipation

Constipation can cause bloating–gas build up–in your stomach and intestines, but it generally does not increase gas. When gas doesn’t pass as flatulence because of slow-moving bowel movements, it can build up in the stomach and intestines, and cause bloating. Any bloating you may have as a result could lead to abdominal pain that can vary from dull and mild, to sharp and intense.

5. Anxiety and Tension

Excessive anxiety and tension may cause you to breathe faster, resulting in you taking in more air. This faster breathing increases the chances of you swallowing more air. Moreover, the stomach produces not only digestive enzymes, but also hydrochloric acid, and because excessive emotional tensions increase hydrochloric acid production, it also causes excessive gas build up in the intestines.

Can’t Stop Farting, What Can I Do?

1.  Use Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar can reduce the amount of harmful bacteria in food by creating an unliveable environment for unhealthy bacteria that causes flatus. Taking 1 or 2 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar before a meal, especially dairy products, may help reduce the amount of gas your body produces.

2.  Use Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal is very good at absorbing the hydrogen sulfide which is responsible for the obnoxious odors. It also has millions of pores which trap the gas as it passes through your system. Taking an activated charcoal supplement can help reduce excessive gas and odor.

3.  Add Probiotics to Your Diet

Probiotics help by killing the bad bacteria that feed on carbohydrates and produce excessive gas and foul odors. Probiotics help keep the natural balance of organisms in the intestines, and can be found in yogurts, pickles, soft cheeses, kombucha tea, kifer, and sauerkraut.

4.  Try Digestive Enzymes

Digestive enzyme supplements such as lactase and lipase, are natural substances to help break down and digest food. Digestive enzyme supplements are also used when the pancreas does not or cannot release enough digestive enzymes into the gut to digest the food.

5.  Try Peppermint Oil

Studies show that peppermint oil can help reduce the occurrence of flatulence and reduce stomach muscle spasms. It is recommended to take about 90 mg of peppermint oil daily to help reduce bloating, gas, and improve bowel movement in people with digestive disorders.

6.  Avoid Fructose

Fructose intolerance is also common, but less recognized, and a study shows that nearly half of normal people get gas from fructose. This common fruit sugar is found in fruit juice and is used as a sweetener in some soft drinks.

7.  Reduce Carbonated Products

Carbonated products will cause your intestines to be filled with more air than normal. Beer and ale are the worst, because they are the most carbonated of the alcoholic beverages, which full of high glycemic carbohydrates, and could have a negative effect on your digestive system.

8.  Watch Your Starches

Starch causes the release of intestinal gas when it is digested in the intestines. Wheat starch in particular is harder to digest, and should be avoided if you have excessive gas. Rice is a better choice if you have a gas problem, because it’s easier for your body to digest.

9.  Stop Smoking and Gum Chewing

Chewing gum often causes you to swallow a lot more air than you should and leads to an increase in flatulence. The same is true for smoking, aside from producing too much air in the gut, it’s also harmful to your overall health.

10. Try Medications

Some over the counter medications from your local pharmacy might also help:

  • Medicines containing simethicone such as Maalox Anti-Gas, Mylanta Gas, Gas-X, and Phazyme, cause gas bubbles to break up, which may decrease passing gas.
  • Those who are lactose intolerant can get help from a lactase supplement such as LactAid.

When Should I Worry About Excessive Farting?

How Much Is Too Much?

If you can’t stop farting, consult with your physician, he/she might encourage you to count the number of times you pass gas daily. Depending on the amount of times, more than 20, your doctor may recommend that you keep a journal of the foods you’re eating to pinpoint the cause before taking it to the next level.

Does the Smell Mean Anything?

Most farts are odorless, but everyone passes smelly gas from time to time. The foul odor is usually caused by sulfur in your system, and it’s rarely a reason for concern. However, some foods, such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and eggs are notorious for foul odors from gas.

Other odorous gas making conditions may include:

  • Stomach illness (such as food poisoning)
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Malabsorption problems
  • Colon cancer
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Radio drama improves people’s attitude to health 0

A radio drama project to promote child nutrition, agriculture and maternal/child health issues has shown an improved attitude of listeners to such issues.

According to the project implemented for six months at Saboba and Savelugu Assemblies in the Northern Region in 2018, those, who listened to the radio dramas on child nutrition, agriculture and maternal/child health issues, improved in terms of their attitude towards those issues compared to those, who did not listen.

The project, whose findings were released at a workshop in Tamale on Friday, used radio dramas to propagate messages on good nutrition, health and agricultural practices to listeners to assess if listening to such messages would have any impact on their lives.

It was implemented by the Texas A&M University School of Public Health in the United States, University for Development Studies (UDS), Ghana Health Service (GHS), Ministry of Food and Agriculture, and Community Health Nurses Training College, Tamale.

Dr Mahama Saaka, Senior Lecturer, Department of Nutritional Sciences of UDS, who presented the findings at a forum in Tamale, said even though the attitude of listeners improved, it did not result in a change in their health conditions as malnutrition was still high at the area.

Dr Saaka suggested that Ghana Health Service scale up the project to reach a large number of the population to help change their attitudes to help improve the country’s health indicators.

Professor Lisako McKyer, Associate Dean for Climate and Diversity, Health Promotion and Community Health Science at Texas A&M University was hopeful that the project marked the beginning of a productive partnership amongst the implementers saying “Together, we can and we will positively impact the lives of all.”

Hajia Azara Amadu, Northern Regional Nutrition Officer lauded the project saying it was in line with the behavioural change campaigns of the GHS to promote improved health practices amongst the people.

Source: GNA

Adverse Health Effects of Plastics 0

In addition to creating safety problems during production, many chemical additives that give plastic products desirable performance properties also have negative environmental and human health effects. These effects include

  • Direct toxicity, as in the cases of lead, cadmium, and mercury
  • Carcinogens, as in the case of diethylhexyl phthalate (DEHP)
  • Endocrine disruption, which can lead to cancers, birth defects, immune system suppression and developmental problems in

Chemical Migration from Plastic Packaging into Contents

People are exposed to these chemicals not only during manufacturing, but also by using plastic packages, because some chemicals migrate from the plastic packaging to the foods they contain. Examples of plastics contaminating food have been reported with most plastic types, including Styrene from polystyrene, plasticizers from PVC, antioxidants from polyethylene, and Acetaldehyde from PET.

Among the factors controlling migration are the chemical structure of the migrants and the nature of the packaged food. In studies cited in Food Additives and Contaminants, LDPE, HDPE, and polypropylene bottles released measurable levels of BHT, Chimassorb 81, Irganox PS 800, Irganix 1076, and Irganox 1010 into their contents of vegetable oil and ethanol. Evidence was also found that acetaldehyde migrated out of PET and into water.

Recommendations

Find alternatives to plastic products whenever possible. Some specific suggestions:

  • Buy food in glass or metal containers; avoid polycarbonate drinking bottles with Bisphenol A
  • Avoid heating food in plastic containers, or storing fatty foods in plastic containers or plastic wrap.
  • Do not give young children plastic teethers or toys
  • Use natural fiber clothing, bedding and furniture
  • Avoid all PVC and Styrene products
Plastic Common Uses Adverse Health Effects
Polyvinylchloride (#3PVC) Food packaging, plastic wrap, containers for toiletries, cosmetics, crib bumpers, floor tiles, pacifiers, shower curtains, toys, water pipes, garden hoses, auto upholstery, inflatable swimming pools Can cause cancer, birth defects, genetic changes, chronic bronchitis, ulcers, skin diseases, deafness, vision failure, indigestion, and liver dysfunction
Phthalates (DEHP, DINP, and others) Softened vinyl products manufactured with phthalates include vinyl clothing, emulsion paint, footwear, printing inks, non-mouthing toys and children’s products, product packaging and food wrap, vinyl flooring, blood bags and tubing, IV containers and components, surgical gloves, breathing tubes, general purpose labware, inhalation masks, many other medical devices Endocrine disruption, linked to asthma, developmental and reporoductive effects. Medical waste with PVC and pthalates is regularly incinerated causing public health effects from the relese of dioxins and mercury, including cancer, birth defects, hormonal changes, declining sperm counts, infertility, endometriosis, and immune system impairment.
Polycarbonate, with Bisphenol A (#7) Water bottles Scientists  have linked very low doses of bisphenol A exposure to cancers, impaired  immune function, early onset of puberty, obesity, diabetes, and  hyperactivity, among other problems (Environment California)
Polystyrene Many food containers for meats, fish, cheeses, yogurt, foam and clear clamshell containers, foam and rigid plates, clear bakery containers, packaging “peanuts”, foam packaging, audio cassette housings, CD cases, disposable cutlery, building insulation, flotation devices, ice buckets, wall tile, paints, serving trays, throw-away hot drink cups, toys Can irritate eyes, nose and throat and can cause dizziness and unconsciousness. Migrates into food and stores in body fat. Elevated rates of lymphatic and hematopoietic cancers for workers.
Polyethelyne (#1 PET) Water and soda bottles, carpet fiber, chewing gum, coffee stirrers, drinking glasses, food containers and wrappers, heat-sealed plastic packaging, kitchenware, plastic bags, squeeze bottles, toys Suspected human carcinogen
Polyester Bedding, clothing, disposable diapers, food packaging, tampons, upholstery Can cause eye and respiratory-tract irritation and acute skin rashes
Urea-formaldehyde Particle board, plywood, building insulation, fabric finishes Formaldehyde is a suspected carcinogen and has been shown to cause birth defects and genetic changes. Inhaling formaldehyde can cause cough, swelling of the throat, watery eyes, breathing problems, headaches, rashes, tiredness
Polyurethane Foam Cushions, mattresses, pillows Bronchitis, coughing, skin and eye problems. Can release toluene diisocyanate which can produce severe lung problems
Acrylic Clothing, blankets, carpets made from acrylic fibers, adhesives, contact lenses, dentures, floor waxes, food preparation equipment, disposable diapers, sanitary napkins, paints Can cause breathing difficulties, vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, weakness, headache and fatigue
Tetrafluoro-
ethelyne
Non-stick coating on cookware, clothes irons, ironing board covers, plumbing and tools Can irritate eyes, nose and throat and can cause breathing difficulties

Sources:

 

ecologycenter.org

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