How to deal with gas and bloating
July 28, 2014 12:00:00 AM
We all have occasional gas, usually from something we have eaten, but many people feel that they pass too much gas or burp too frequently. Intestinal gas can result in abdominal pain, bloating and embarrassment.
The amount of gas produced by the body depends upon your diet and other factors. Most people with symptoms of excessive gas do not produce more gas than the average person, but are more aware of normal amounts of gas.
Where does the gas come from?
Air swallowing is the major source of gas in the stomach. Increased amount of air swallowing can occur with eating food rapidly, gulping liquids, chewing gum, or smoking.
Gas producing foods such as cabbage, broccoli and beans, are difficult to digest and tend to cause more gas and flatulence.
Lactose intolerance is the inability to digest the sugar in milk resulting in increased intestinal gas production, along with cramping and diarrhea.
Bacterial overgrowth can also cause excessive bloating and gas. It’s normal for us to produce billions of harmless bacteria in the GI tract. Some people tend to have large numbers of bacteria in their small bowel and are prone to develop excessive gas.
Celiac disease, which is an allergy to the protein found in wheat, can also cause increased intestinal gas and bloating.
What are the symptoms of gas and bloating?
Some people are sensitive to gas and can experience abdominal discomfort and bloating as gas moves through your colon. Sometimes gas pain can be severe especially if you are also constipated. Many people with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) are sensitive to normal amounts of gas.
How to treat gas and bloating
Talking to your health care provider about your symptoms can help, especially if you have other concerns about your GI tract function.