We all want to maintain some mystery about ourselves, but sometimes it is important to have frank conversations when it comes to living a healthy life. Health can often be messy, and, quite frankly, gross. However, whether you’re talking about why you have white dots on your nails or how to stop snoring, these conversations need to be had.

What are we discussing today? Flatulence. Whether you call it farting, booty tooting, or passing gas, it doesn’t get any prettier. However, it can have a profound influence on your health.

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Imagine you are sitting in an important business meeting and suddenly feel the need to pass gas. Or maybe you are sitting in class when you feel a toot coming on. Do you let it fly, clench or hold it? What you do might depend on the situation. But did you know that farting is good for you?

Gas 101

Passing gas is a natural bodily function. According to WebMD, gas is a normal by-product of the digestive process as your stomach and intestines break down the food you eat for nutrients. Everyone passes gas for their digestive health. It would actually be more concerning if you didn’t have flatulence. Not only is it natural, but there are many health benefits to passing gas.

1.) Provides Relief

While embarrassing, letting go of a toot is a relief. Holding in gas can make you grumpy and uncomfortable. You might snap at your spouse or a co-worker, or grumble at a customer you are helping. Wouldn’t it be better to go ahead and toot and be a little embarrassed? You may not want to let one fly every time you feel the need to, but doing so in moderation may lead to better mood.

2.) Reduces Bloating

Bloating is a feeling of bodily swelling and temporary weight gain. While bloating is not dangerous, it makes most people feel uncomfortable and may make your pants fit a little tighter than usual. Some bloating is caused by water retention. Your body holds onto water for various reasons. However, the fullness and discomfort you feel is most likely due to gas. Passing gas will instantly help you feel better and relieve bloating.

3.) Good for Colon Health

Holding anything in for too long is not good for your health. According to Women’s Health Mag, while it is not dangerous to clench and hold toots in occasionally, if you have other digestive issues, holding your flatulence in can potentially lead to issues with your colon.

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4.) Helps Balance Your Diet

We all need to eat a healthy and balanced diet, but sometimes staying disciplined can be challenging. Your flatulence can actually help you stay on track. Different types of food produce different kinds of gas. This can help you determine what you may need more or less of in your daily diet.

For instance, if you don’t pass gas often, you may need more fiber in your diet. Good sources of fiber include lentils, lima beans, broccoli, artichokes, raspberries, peas, avocados, blackberries, whole wheat pasta, and pears. Including enough fiber in your daily diet will also help you avoid constipation.

Fiber makes waste softer and heavier, allowing it to move more easily through your intestinal tract. Of course you don’t want to eat too much fiber, either. Eating too much fiber allows waste to pass through your intestinal tract too quickly.

Eating too much red meat can make your toots smell particularly unpleasant later. If you notice your toots are particularly smelly, you may need to cut back on the red meat in your diet.

5.) The Smell is Good for You

jim carrey gagging

via GIPHY

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That rotten egg smell from toots is certainly unpleasant, but smelling toots may actually be beneficial for your health. Research has shown that hydrogen sulfide, a compound you produce in small amounts in your gas, may protect you from future illness. Hydrogen sulfide is dangerous in large quantities, but in small doses, it may ward off cell damage and prevent heart attacks and strokes in the future. So instead of running off after you have tooted in the dairy section, you might want to stick around and enjoy the smell.

 

6.) Healthy and Happy Gut Bacteria

Flatulence may indicate good digestive health. Foods that nourish your microbiome and promote more efficient digestion include brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and cabbage, according to NPR. Not only do these foods promote better digestion, they also produce more gas. More flatulence may be the price you pay for a healthier digestive system. Hippocrates said that “All Disease Begins In The Gut” so finding out what your poop means can only benefit you.

7.) Gas Can Warn You About Other Health Issues

While unpleasant, changes in flatulence can actually be a warning sign for other health issues. Increased flatulence, incredibly smelly toots, and unusual gas pains can be warning signs of something as simple as lactose intolerance or as serious as colon cancer. Do not ignore any changes in your flatulence, and discuss all changes with your physician. The conversation may feel embarrassing, but it is worth it.

Are you surprised to learn about all the health benefits of passing gas? The next time you feel the need to toot, think about all the benefits of passing gas. You might just want to go ahead and let one rip!

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What Your Farts Say About Your Health

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