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8 Surprising Facts About Flatulence

The average person can pass gas between 10 and 15 times a day, and this is just one of the many interesting facts about flatulence. If you’ve ever wondered what happens in your gut when you feel gassy or why we need to break wind sometimes, this article can help you to clear up some things.

5-Minute Crafts gathered 9 surprising facts about flatulence and are sharing them with you in this article.

1. Farting is completely normal.

Although it is a taboo topic and most people consider it gross or view it as something negative, passing gas is a normal, healthy human habit. Trillions of various bacteria reside in our intestines and live in a symbiotic relationship. As we give them a safe place to stay, they help us to digest certain carbohydrates that we couldn’t otherwise. These bacteria can extricate the nutrients from our food, help boost our immune system, and make vitamins for us. Plus, they generally play a major role in helping our gastrointestinal system to function properly.

2. Only 1% of intestinal gas has a stinky smell.

Most of the gas that we produce is actually odorless. The gas in our digestive system consists mostly of hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and methane, and none of these have a smell. The actual malodor comes from compounds that have sulfur in them, such as beans, cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, onions, and dairy products.

3. Swallowed air can make you gassier.

If you like drinking a soda or chewing gum, you should know that this can increase your flatulence. The air can also be ingested during sleeping, but all of this creates gas that’s mostly odorless, as it consists of nitrogen and oxygen.

4. We don’t mind the smell of our own farts for a reason.

The explanation is quite simple — the more we are familiar with something, the more we like it. That can be backed up with the psychological phenomenon called the mere-exposure effect — the more we are exposed to something, the more we get to know it, and the more we tend to prefer it, as we find it comforting. We are accustomed to our own smells and don’t notice them all the time, but we can notice other people’s scents.

Another reason we don’t mind the smell is that we are prepared for our farts, however, we can be caught off guard when other people pass gas.

5. Holding gas in won’t make it disappear.

The very uncomfortable feeling of holding it in and abstaining from letting the gas out is familiar to many people. It can happen for different reasons, but the truth is, flatulence won’t magically disappear — it will come out eventually. Although, it can happen gradually, as we are not always completely aware of it.

6. We let out around 500 to 1,500 milliliters of gas per day.

As stated above, the average person can pass gas between 10 and 15 (or 20) times a day, which is equivalent to 500-1500 milliliters of gas. It is the result of bacterial fermentation in the gastrointestinal tract, and the amount can vary based on what you eat. If your diet consists of carbohydrates, like potatoes, oats, cabbage, etc., the bacteria will be more active in order to dissolve the food.

7. You shouldn’t starve the bacteria that cause flatulence.

Many people will try to refrain from eating foods that cause flatulence. However, starving the bacteria that can digest the complex carbs is not a good idea since they will have to feed on the sugar that is inside the lining of the tract. A good diet needs to consist of food that will nourish the good microbes in our intestines and help them work smoothly.

8. An abnormal increase in flatulence

Although gas production is a sign of a healthy stomach flora, some people can suffer from abnormally increased flatulence. People who are lactose intolerant, for example, can experience cramps, bloating, and uncomfortable feelings in their gut since they lack enzymes (or have a reduced number of them) that can digest the sugar found in dairy products.

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