Gas and flatulence can be a real problem for many people, especially when it shows up at the wrong times, for example: while you’re socializing. The medical term for a build-up of gas within the digestive system is “Flatulence”. Flatulence. commonly referred to as farting or passing gas, is a rather common problem but it does have several simple remedies that can surely ease your symptoms.
Before looking into remedies, it is crucial to understand what causes and aggravates your condition and address that first. Otherwise, the problem may only be temporarily relieved.
Gas generally builds up in the digestive system for one of four reasons:
1. Swallowing air while chewing, eating fast, drinking soda, etc.
2. Eating gas-forming foods such as beans, lentils, cruciferous veggies (cauliflower, cabbage, etc) and certain fruits like apples. Gas can also form as a result of too quickly introducing a diet that is rich in fiber such as a raw food diet or going vegan/vegetarian. Dairy can also be a problem.
3. Drugs such as aspirin, antacids, antidiarrheals, glucosidase inhibitors, etc.
4. Certain underlying conditions, for example:
– Inflammatory bowel disease (Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis, etc)
– Peptic Ulcers
– Irritable Bowel Syndrome
– Lactose Intolerance
If you’re wondering how to reduce flatulence, I would suggest utilizing spices in your diet.
Ginger is known as a potent gastrointestinal medicine that is commonly used in traditional medicine for treating nausea, colic, indigestion, vomiting, gastroenteritis, bloating, and fatty liver disease. In clinical research, Ginger has been found to effectively treat several conditions associated with flatulence including functional dyspepsia, gastroenteritis, infantile colic, and more (1).
A popular spice in Asian cuisine, Anise is also known for its gastrointestinal benefits and rich mineral content. Anise has long been a traditional remedy for gas, abdominal pain, nausea, and infantile colic. In clinical research, Anise has proven to be a potent remedy for several disorders that are associated with gastrointestinal complaints such as migraines, menopause, PMS, and functional dyspepsia (2).
3. Dill Essential Oil
In traditional medicine, Dill has been used for various digestive complaints including indigestion, gas, and colic in infants. Dill has become a very popular remedy in Ayurveda and other natural medical sciences due to the fact several clinical studies have proven its efficacy in treating a wide range of disorders including PCOS, anxiety during labor, Diabetes type 2, gingivitis and post-caesarian flatulence (3).
In order to prevent and reduce gas formation, one should consume a diet rich in digestive and anti-flatulent spices such as ginger, anise, fennel, dill, cumin, and black pepper and cooked with healthy butyrate rich fats such as ghee or butter. It is best to avoid gas-forming foods such as beans, lentils, cruciferous vegetables, soy, fiber-rich fruits, and dairy. Make sure to chew your food well and to avoid talking while eating. A healthy habit used in India to avoid gas formation and promote digestion is to consume a small amount of fennel seeds after meals.
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(Always use medicinal herbs under the supervision of a doctor)
by Dr. Nishal R.
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