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Why do we fart?


Whether you are the type to nervously hold them in or shamelessly just let them rip, everybody farts. But for an activity like tooting, in which we all take part in 5 - 15 times a day (according to the experts), there may be a lot you don’t know about breaking wind. That’s why we’re here, to break the news to you about why we fart. Let’s get into our top 5 flatulence facts!


Before we get into the interesting toot tidbits, we first want to clear the air and answer the age-old question:Why do we fart?

According toMedical News Today, the body produces intestinal gas as part of the process of digestion. Once this gas is inside the body, it needs to be released somehow. It is usually expelled as flatulence or as a burp. Simply put it is gaseous waste that needs to come out one way or another. As simple as this may sound, there is much more to farts than meets the eye (or nose?). Read on to learn what will no doubt be the best trivia facts at your next cocktail party.


The Volume of Your Gas

We’re not talking about the sound of your flatulence (though I am sure some farts can register an impressive amount of decibels). We’re talking about how much gas a person can produce daily.Purna Kashyap, a gastroenterologist at the Mayo Clinic, suggests thaton average a person can produce 500 - 1500 milliliters of gas a day

That is a staggering and honestly impressive statistic if you ask me. This means that on average a person can just about produce enough gas to fill up half of a 2-liter soda bottle…every day! If you ask me, we all deserve a pat on the back for such an admirable feat. But if you’re impressed by that stat, just wait for number two. 


Gum Makes You Fart More

A stick of gum on the first date is always an advisable decision… or is it? Sorry to burst your bubble, but studies show that chewing more gum leads to having more gas. First thing’s first: if you’re chewing a lot of gum, you’re most likely swallowing more air than you normally would, which can result in gas. This is known as air swallowing(aerophagia), which is when people swallow small amounts of air by eating or drinking rapidly, chewing gum, and even smoking. And All of this swallowed air has to get out somehow…



But that’s not all. Sugar-free gum makes things even more complicated. Some sugar-free gum is sweetened with sugar alcohols like xylitol, sorbitol, and erythritol, carbohydrates that can contribute to gas in the body. While everyone has a different tolerance to these artificial sweeteners, they have been known to cause excess gas in the colon — and in severe cases, cramping and diarrhea.

So next time you think about chewing gum before that big date, remember this fact to avoid a potentially sticky (or stinky) situation.


Only 1% of Farts Actually Smell

Yup, you read correctly — As shocking as it may sound, 99% of gas passed is odorless. The reason for this is that most farts are made up of odorless gases such as carbon dioxide, hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, and methane. That leaves 1% of the smelly stuff, hydrogen sulfide. The infamous rotten egg smell we are all too familiar with is the scent of this hydrogen sulfide gas. 

Contrary to what you may think, stinky gas is not a bad thing, it's just a function of what you're eating and what your bacteria is doing inside your gastrointestinal tract. Everyone is different and foul smell just means the carbohydrates you consume are being malabsorbed -- it's fermented." saysDr. Brand.

The end product of this fermentation in our gastrointestinal tract is what we know as gas -- carbon dioxide, hydrogen, or methane. And it's all made from bacteria fermentation, who gets all the credit for that smelly one percent.


Farts are Flammable

This may or may not come as a surprise to most, but flatulence is indeed flammable. As stated above, the methane and hydrogen in bacteria-produced farts make your gas highly flammable. 

We don’t recommend you try this at home, but this is why some people think it's a fun party trick to hold a lighter up to their bums and let one fly. Doing this can actually produce a big burst of flame, but is obviously very dangerous, so we recommend not using this as your next party trick.


Vegetarians Pass More Gas

Okay, to be fair this is definitely just a generalization and is not always the case, but studies still show that the vegetarian diet can cause more gas than non-vegetarians. This is primarily due to the protein choices many vegetarians opt for such as Beans, lentils, and legumes.

Beans contain a healthy amount of fiber which definitely does not help reduce gas. But more importantly, beans contain raffinose family oligosaccharides (RFOs). These RFOs are a group of sugars that are at least partially responsible for the bloating and gas that can occur after a beany meal. Lentils, legumes, and cruciferous veggies all also contain RFOs and can lead to you feeling bloated and gassy. 

If you are now a worried vegetarian, fear not! Read our article on the best diet choices to reduce gas and bloating. Or just hope for the best! (we recommend you read it)

[“Why do my farts smell so bad? 4 SIMPLE DIET CHANGES TO REDUCE BAD GAS”]


Whether you are bold and freely (and frequently) break wind at will or are shy when it comes to tooting, we hope you enjoyed these fart-tastic flatulence facts and maybe even learned something new! To read more articles and posts like this make sure you subscribe to our newsletter to get updates, deals, and more insightful posts like this one!

Don’t worry about getting spam mail from us, because like farts we think that stinks. In signing up you will only get exclusive content and offers relating to awesome topics like the one in this article. So what are you waiting for? Subscribe today!

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