Stomach Gas Relief

While an average human being passes 2-3 pints of gas a day, flatulence can be a very embarrassing health problem. Most people feel a high degree of discomfort due to gas in the stomach.  But the good news is it can be controlled through taking some corrective action in eating and food habits. Exercise can also help and there are specific yoga postures to get relief from stomach gas.


Gas in the stomach results from either of the following causes


1.  Swallowing of air while chewing or swallowing food – While chewing food, we tend to swallow some amount of air with the food. This air settles in the upper part of the stomach and is dispelled by belching. A small part of the air swallowed moves through the digestive tract and is absorbed by the blood vessels lining the intestines. A very small part moves into the large intestine and is expelled through the rectum

2.     Production of gases by bacteria present in the digestive tract- Our digestive tract contains bacteria which aid the process of digestion. In the process of digestion, food is fermented and as a byproduct, a mixture of oxygen, hydrogen and sulphur is produced. This gas is expelled through the rectum.


Relief from gas problems can be secured through the following solutions


1.   Chew food well and avoid talking while eating. This enables saliva to mix well with food and start the process of digestion in the mouth itself. By not talking while eating, less air is swallowed which leads to lesser belching.


2.   Avoid foods like beans, chesses, nuts, cabbage and gluten based products. These foodstuffs are difficult to digest and consequently stay in the digestive tract for a longer time, giving bacteria more time to ferment the food and produce smelly gases.


3.   Starches and sugars in excess compound the problem of gas. When suffering from gas, cut down on starchy foods and carbonated soft drinks.


4.   Digestive enzymes containing lacto bacilli are available as over the counter supplements. These supplements increase the friendly bacteria count in the digestive tract, leading to better digestion and less gas.


5.   Taking a brisk walk stimulates glands and helps in speeding digestion and dispelling gas.


6.   A spoonful of baking soda dissolved in a glass of water helps in easing a bloated stomach because of gas.


7.   Spices available in the kitchen provide an effective remedy for flatulence.  Mint and ginger tea taken without milk brings immediate relief. Powdered cinnamon, cumin seeds, carom seeds and dried ginger taken with a small quantity of honey brings relief.


8.   Sour buttermilk taken with a pinch of asafetida relieves discomfort due to gas.


9.   Certain postures in Yoga where the knees are drawn to the stomach in a supine position help dispelling abdominal gas. This pose is called Pavanamuktasana.

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