Everyone has gas. Burping or passing gas through the rectum is normal but because it is embarrassing to burp or pass gas, many people believe they pass gas "too often" or have "too much" gas.
Most of the time gas is odorless. The odor comes from sulfur made by bacteria in the large intestine. Sometimes gas causes bloating and pain. Not everyone has these symptoms.
A variety of gastrointestinal complaints or symptoms are caused by gas. For example, belching, bloating, abdominal pain, and flatulence can be due to sensation from gas, not necessarily "excess gas."
Burping, abdominal bloating, and flatus (passing gas through the rectum) is normal. We all do it.
Normally you can pass gas or flatus up to12 to 25 times per day, typically later in the day than in the morning.
Gas is formed in the intestines by the action of bacteria as food is being digested. Gas is also called flatus or flatulence and is passed through the intestine and out the body through the rectum.
Excessive intestinal gas also occurs due to excessive air swallowing or increased intraluminal production from malabsorbed nutrients (such as lactose, fructose, or sucrose, for example). This is where there is a benefit in trying the low-FODMAP diet. You can read my other blogs for more about a low-FODMAP diet.
When foods are not digested in the small intestine, such as carbohydrates like lactose, fructose, or sucrose, then pass into the large intestine (colon). The bacteria, yeast, and fungi in the colon cause fermentation of the undigested carbohydrates that lead to gas production.
Let's get right into how to treat it...
Everyone has gas. Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels
Before trying anything, always consult with your physician.
Lactase (found in Dairy Ease and Lactaid as examples, is an enzyme needed to break down the carbohydrate lactose found in dairy products
Beano (helps digest the indigestible carbohydrate in beans and other gas-producing vegetables)
Everyone has gas.
Changing what you eat and drink can help prevent or relieve gas.
Passing gas frequently is normal.
Cut down on the foods that cause gas.
Drink plenty of water.
Drink plenty of water. Try not to drink soda and beer.
Eat slower and chew more to cut down on the amount of air you swallow when you eat.
Avoid chewing gum.
Make sure your dentures fit properly.
Keep a diet diary.
Broccoli, cabbage, brussels sprouts, onions, artichokes, asparagus
Pears, apples, peaches
Whole grains, whole wheat, bran
Soft drinks, fruit drinks
Milk, milk products, cheese, ice cream
Packaged foods that have lactose in them (bread, cereal, salad dressing)
Dietetic foods, sugar-free candies, and gums