Gas, or flatulence, is a natural body reaction. According to MayoClinic.com, most people pass gas at least 12 times a day. Still, foul smelling flatulence can cause embarrassment and awkwardness in social situations. The foul odor associated with flatulence is caused by gas passing through the large intestine; bacteria releases small amounts of sulfur. A variety of home remedies and treatment may aid in reducing gas and decrease discomfort.
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According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, peppermint is a common remedy for gas and other digestive disorders. Specifically, peppermint soothes and relaxes the digestive tract allowing gas to pass without discomfort. Peppermint may be ingested as a tea or by taking enteric coated tablets. The university suggests patients drink peppermint tea between meals, four to five times a day. Herbs, such as peppermint, should be consumed with oversight by a medical professional due to potential side effects. Specifically, peppermint should not be consumed by someone suffering from gastroesophageal reflux disease or a hiatal hernia. Pregnant women and people who commonly suffer from gallstones should also avoid peppermint.
Decrease Swallowing Air
A variety of simple lifestyle changes will reduce belching and flatulence. According to MedlinePlus, a service of the National Institutes of Health, a person experiencing a large amount of gas should avoid chewing gum or consuming hard candy. A person should remain upright and not lie down immediately after eating. Walking and moving the body for 10 to 15 minutes after eating is recommended. Relaxing and chewing food slowly during meal times decreases the amount of air swallowed. A person may also be wearing dentures that are too large, causing him to swallow excess air. Dentures should be checked for the correct size.
Certain foods often cause foul smelling gas. However, each food reacts differently for each person. While garlic or broccoli may be a common culprit for one person, these foods may not cause foul gas for another person. MotherNature.com suggests starting with a plain salad and each day adding an additional vegetable to discover what foods are causing gas issues. Common foods that cause flatulence include cabbage, beans, corn, citrus fruits and potatoes. Beans often produce less flatulence if they are soaked in water for about 12 hours before cooking, according to MotherNature.com.