What Causes Intestinal Gas
Causes of intestinal gas include:
- Food digestion: Your small intestines lack certain enzymes needed to digest and absorb carbohydrates in sweet, starchy and fibrous foods. This undigested food passes into the large intestine, where harmless bacteria break down the food, forming hydrogen and carbon dioxide gases. In some people, intestinal bacteria produce methane gas, too. This process is responsible for most gas passed in flatulence.
- Swallowing air: You swallow air without even noticing while eating, drinking, chewing gum or smoking. You can also swallow too much air if you have loose-fitting dentures. Most people expel swallowed air through the mouth by belching . But your intestines partially absorb some air, which you pass when you fart.
What Are The Possible Health Benefits Of Chamomile
If youve struggled with sleepless nights or a bout of insomnia, theres a good chance youve reached for a cup of chamomile tea to help you snooze more soundly. Some people also turn to chamomile in supplement or tea form to help relieve anxiety and gastrointestinal conditions, such as upset stomach, gas, and diarrhea. Its also applied to the skin in oils, ointments, or creams for skin conditions and is used as an oral rinse for mouth sores. For the most part, these effects have not been studied enough in humans to prove their effects, though, according to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health .
But the NCCIH notes that preliminary research suggests chamomile may be helpful for generalized anxiety disorder when taken as a dietary supplement. A small, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study published in August 2009 in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology concluded that participants taking German chamomile extract saw a reduction of anxiety compared with control participants. The researchers called for further study to reproduce the results.
Can Gas And Bloating Cause Headaches
It is possible that excessive gastrointestinal gas makes its way to your head and cause headaches.
Headaches provoked by abdominal bloating are mainly bought on by leguminous foods, such as beans, which are difficult to digest and are known to produce excessive gas that has nowhere to go. If your headache is set off by flatulence, it will automatically subside when the stomach bloating comes down.
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Here Are 9 Ways To Relieve Gas Pain
Since youre probably extremely curious about how to relieve gas pain, we hate to break it to you: There isnt one magic pill that will immediately get rid of any painful gas you may be experiencing. Figuring out how to cure gas is the holy grail for us, Dr. Staller says. There are, however, a few tricks you can try to either make the gas go away or, at the very least, make yourself feel better.
Lifestyle Changes To Help Prevent Gas
1. Eat smaller portions of foods that cause you gas
2. Eat more slowly
3. Chew foods well
4. Dont chew gum, smoke or drink through a straw as they can cause excessive swallowing of air
5. Avoid carbonated beverages
Gas pains can be mistaken for certain serious conditions including:
- Heart disease
- Pain in the lymph nodes of the throat, armpits or groin
- Unusual fatigue
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How To Grow Chamomile And Then Store The Herb
If you decide to grow your own chamomile, follow these steps:
- Pick the flowers when the petals are full, and lay flat around the center of the flower.
- Pop the flower head off with your fingers, and leave behind any stems.
- Spread the flowers out on a surface in a warm and well-ventilated place away from sunlight to dry out completely .
- Store them in a sealed, airtight container for up to a year.
Calming Herbs To Soothe Anxiety
Roman chamomile, also known as English chamomile, is a perennial that grows to be about 1 foot tall. Its gray-green leaves are thicker than those of its German cousin, and its white petals emanate from a solid receptacle. The essential oil is pale yellow to clear. It contains esters of angelic and tiglic acids, responsible for its reputed sedative properties and a warm, spicy odor, respectively. Some people believe its tea can help reduce inflammation and soothe gastrointestinal problems. Chamomile users prize the herb variety for its possible medicinal qualities, scent, and taste.
Try each for yourself in a tea or in aromatherapy and see which one comes out on top for you.
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Avoid Rapid Weight Gain
Rapid weight gain is linked to bloating for several reasons.
First, a buildup of fat in your stomach area may constrain your bowels, increasing tension and contributing to bloating. Additionally, fat may have inflammatory effects, contributing to hypersensitivity in your gut .
Finally, unwanted weight gain may cause you to focus attention on your stomach area, which may increase your perception of bloating .
If you have overweight or obesity and are experiencing bloating, trying some healthy strategies for weight loss such as exercise and limiting portion sizes may be beneficial.
Rapid weight gain may contribute to bloating by increasing bowel tension, inflammation, and mental focus on your stomach area. Conversely, weight loss may help reduce these effects.
Why Do Gas And Bloating Increase During Pregnancy
When youre pregnant, your body naturally produces more of the hormone progesterone to help nurture your baby. Thats a good thing. But these increased hormone levels also relax the muscles throughout your body, including your intestinal muscles.Because of this, digestion slows down. That means its easier for gas to build up. And its harder to control the release of gas.
Plus, later in pregnancy, your baby puts added pressure on your abdomen, which can contribute to increased gas.
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Gas & Bloating Due To Ibs
Irritable bowel syndrome is sort of a catch-all term for digestive issues that have no other diagnosable cause. In fact, an estimated 50% of people diagnosed with IBS actually have SIBO.
For the other 50%, there are a number of possible underlying issues that may be causing your symptoms, including leaky gut, Candida overgrowth, parasites, or food intolerances. In that case, an amino acid called L-Glutamine may be just what you need. The main function of L-Glutamine is to provide the building blocks of protein. Your body produces it naturally to protect the mucous membrane of the esophagus and intestines. Because its so readily and easily used by your intestinal tissue, L-Glutamine can help to quickly restore your gut lining to an optimal state.
Interested in finding out which diet is right for you? Take this short symptoms quiz to determine which foods are best for your condition, and which foods you should eliminate.
Foods to Enjoy, Foods to Toss Quiz
Take Some Deep Breaths
Deep breathing may help with gas pain. But this only tends to work if it’s something you practice regularly.
Since deep breathing from the diaphragm is so effective for reducing stress, it’s worth taking the time to learn how to do it. You can then use this breathing technique as needed for future gas attacks.
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What Even Causes Gas Pain
Why does gas sometimes hurt so bad that you want to cry and check yourself into the ER? Good question. There are a few main causes of gas to keep in mind:
1. Youre swallowing a lot of air: We touched on this above, but its worth emphasizing as a gas pain cause. While its unlikely that youre actually trying to suck down a bunch of oxygen, certain habits like regularly using a straw, drinking a lot of carbonated beverages, eating too quickly, and chewing gum can cause you to take in more air than normal. When this causes gas, its typically via burping, since the air comes back up before it can go all the way to your stomach.
2. Youre eating foods youre sensitive to: Your stomach and small intestine dont entirely break down certain carbohydrates you eat, so they end up getting to your large intestine intact, according to NIDDK. There, bacteria make gas as they process these undigested sugars, fibers, and starches. Certain foods, like dairy products and cruciferous vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, are more likely to cause gas than others, but everyones triggers are different.
3. You have a health condition: Gas can happen if you have health conditions that affect your digestive system, like irritable bowel syndrome, ulcerative colitis, or Crohns disease, or bacterial overgrowth in the small intestine, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Natural And Other Remedies For Gas
Two products on the market can help with food-related gas and bloating. Both products are packaged forms of the enzymes needed to break down the problematic carbohydrates. Lactase, found in products such as Dairy Ease and Lactaid, can be taken with dairy foods to help break down lactose and lessen gas. Beano helps digest the indigestible carbohydrate in beans and other gas-producing vegetables.
Natural remedies for gas include:
- Peppermint tea
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Common Complaints With Flatulence
- Loud flatus this is caused by the muscles of the bowel forcing air through the tight ring of muscle at the anus. Suggestions include passing the air with less power, and reducing the amount of intestinal gas by making dietary adjustments.
- Smelly flatus the gas produced by bacterial fermentation can smell, depending on the food eaten. Suggestions include limiting common culprits such as garlic, onions, spicy foods and beer.
- Excessive flatus this is caused by swallowing air, eating high-fibre foods, lactose intolerance or some digestive disorders. Suggestions include reducing the amount of intestinal gas by making dietary adjustments and seeking medical advice.
How To Get Rid Of Stomach Gas
Although stomach gas is not life-threatening, it can be extremely embarrassing. Therefore, persons suffering with excessive gas in the stomach can rely on below measures to rid excessive gas buildup.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
You can always rely on apple cider vinegar to treat indigestion and stomach gas. There are many enzymes in ACV responsible for alkalizing your body and promoting better digestion.
Take a glass of warm water and add 2 tsp. of ACV to it. Mix well and leave it for a few minutes to cool to room temperature. Then, drink twice a day. You can use this remedy even when you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
One of the best remedies to deal with stomach gas is to use some ginger. It has antiemetic properties, so it reduces nausea and works amazingly well to help expel intestinal gas. Some studies have also found that ginger may trigger the process of gastric emptying. It also helps soothe the intestinal tract.
Take equal amounts of ground ginger, cardamom, and fennel. Mix well and add a teaspoon of this mixture along with some asafetida to a cup of water. Have it twice a day to relieve indigestion. You can also drink ginger tea or simply chew on raw ginger pieces for relief.
3. Baking Soda and Lemon
Also called sodium bicarbonate, baking soda acts as an antacid and helps expel stomach gas. Combine it with lemon juice to make it even more effective.
6. Change the Diet
7. Other Remedies
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What Causes Gas & Bloating
There are two main causes of gas in the digestive tract .
Medical Conditions That Cause Gas
Some medical conditions can increase intestinal gas, gas pains, or bloating including:
- Intestinal diseases chronic intestinal diseases like Crohnâs disease, ulcerative colitis, and diverticulitis can cause excess gas.
- Overgrowth of bacteria A change or increase in small intestine bacteria may cause excess gas, weight loss, or diarrhea.
- Food intolerance some food intolerances can cause excess intestinal gas. This is caused by an inability to properly break down the sugar in dairy products or gluten .
- Constipation It may be difficult to pass gas when experiencing constipation.
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Chew Your Food Properly
Taking your time to eat your food slowly and drink slowly will help to reduce the amount of air you swallow. An easy way to do this is to put your fork down between mouthfuls.
Some people even like to count the number of times they chew each mouthful: around 32 times is recommended for breaking down food so that it loses texture.
If thats too bothersome, simply focus on chewing your food to a mush before swallowing. Allow plenty of time for each meal, and dont eat on the run.
And, most importantly, close your mouth while eating!
Just To Be Super Clear: What Are The Symptoms Of Gas
Since you probably have a hunch, lets start here. When you have a meal or snack, your food passes through your gastrointestinal tract. Your GI tract is made up of your mouth, esophagus, stomach, small intestine, large intestine , and anus, the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases explains.
Since you take in air as you eat, drink, talk, chew gum, and all of that fun stuff, that air has to pass through your GI tract as well. As it goes through your body, gas can cause a series of not-so-pleasant symptoms, including:
- Abdominal pain
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What Is Flatulence Or Intestinal Gas
The definition of flatulence is gas , usually in excess, that is present in the intestinal tract and usually removed from the body by passing out through the anus, often accompanied by sound and odor when the gas is expelled by the body. Common terms for flatulence include terms such as farts, breaking wind, and passing gas. Some individuals include belching under flatulence.
- The primary components of gas are five odorless gases: nitrogen, hydrogen, carbon dioxide, methane, and oxygen.
- The characteristic smelly odor is attributed to trace gases such as skatole, indole, and sulfur-containing compounds.
- The flammable character of flatus is caused by hydrogen and methane. The proportions of these gases depend largely on the bacteria that live in the human colon that digest, or ferment, food that has not been absorbed by the gastrointestinal tract before reaching the colon.
- An estimated 30-150 grams of this undigested food reach the colon in the form of carbohydrate every day. But this amount can vary with diet and how well the GI tract is functioning.
A condition termed “vaginal flatulence” is the release of air trapped in the vagina during or after sexual intercourse that sounds like flatulence when expelled from the vagina, but does not contain waste gases and has no specific odor. It is not flatulence, but termed so because of the sound emitted when the air escapes the vagina.
Consider If Dairy Is Actually The Culprit
If you’re currently in the fetal position dealing with gas pain, think back to how much cheese, milk, and ice cream you had recentlyeven if you don’t think you’re lactose intolerant. You can spend years having zero issues when you drink a venti latte in the A.M., followed by a grilled cheese sandwich at lunchuntil you suddenly do.
As most people age, they start making less lactase, an enzyme that breaks down lactose, the sugar in dairy products, Dr. Staller says. This is one cause of lactase deficiency and lactose intolerance. As your digestive systems bacteria try to break down lactose without enough lactase to do the job, you may experience annoying symptoms like more painful gas than usual.
Many people in their 20s and 30s have symptoms and dont suspect that its the dairy products, Dr. Staller says. If you think dairy is behind your painful gas, try cutting it out for a few weeks and see where that gets you.
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When Bloating And Gas Is Not Normal
In most cases, bloating and gas are just regular parts of the digestive process. Good bacteria in your gut ferment foods that are not fully digested in your small intestine.When you eat too many gas-producing foodsor too much fiber and not enough waterits normal to experience some abdominal pain, gas, and the distension that makes your tummy feel full and tight. Gas can also be caused by swallowing too much air, which can happen if you chew gum, eat too quickly, or drink through a straw.
If youre curious about how to get rid of gas and bloating, start by drinking plenty of water, eating smaller meals slowly, and ditching straws and gum. As youll see, eating foods that reduce gas, and avoiding certain foods that cause it can also help. However, there are two underlying gut issues that you should get tested for if your digestive symptoms are extreme and dont respond to these lifestyle measures.
Talk To Your Doctor If Youre Worried
If lifestyle changes donât help, and youâre bloated or gassy often, talk to your doctor.
“Bloating or abnormal amounts of intestinal gas can be a symptom of celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome, bacterial overgrowth, or problems associated with the pancreas,” Kosinski says. “Certain medications can also cause intestinal gas. So itâs definitely important to mention it to your doctor if youâre worried.”
Your doctor may suggest tests to rule out underlying problems. If the culprit is simply the foods you love, your doctor can also prescribe medicine — a gastrointestinal stimulant — that moves gas through your intestines more quickly.
Lawrence R. Kosinski, MD, MBA, gastroenterologist in private practice in Elgin, Illinois, and spokesperson for the American Gastroenterological Association: 847-888-1300.
National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse: âGas in the Digestive Tract.â
American Gastroenterological Association: âLiving With Gas in the Digestive Tract.â
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