Is There a Simple Solution for Embarrassing Gas?

By on July 11, 2011

By Erin Chamerlik, MT(ASCP) –

Experiencing a little gas is normal. Rearranging your schedule around your “problem” and avoiding crowded elevators is another matter. You have already thought about all the foods that may the culprit like beans, cabbage, onions, broccoli, and dried fruit, yet still the problem persists. Here are a few simple things to consider that might help.

1. Eat a whole food diet focusing on fresh vegetables, fruit, animal protein, fish, seeds, and nuts. Include healthy fat (organic butter, raw coconut oil, extra virgin olive oil). Reduce or eliminate processed carbs (like bagels, bread, crackers, pasta, baked goods), carbonated drinks, chewing gum and sugar alcohols (xylitol, mannitol, sorbitol, erythritol).

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2. Rebalance your good bacteria and take a probiotic supplement. Probiotics are the good bacteria that live in us. There is a balance between helpful and harmful bacteria and an imbalance is called dysbiosis. This is such an important topic that I will provide more information below. Garden of Life Primal Defense is a widely available probiotic supplement that is very effective.

3. Chew your food properly! When we hurry through a meal we tend to take a few bites and swallow before we have really chewed the food well. Remember that your stomach does not have teeth and simply chewing your food until it is unidentifiable could help reduce gas.

4. Prior to meals drink 1 Tbs Bragg’s Raw Apple Cider Vinegar mixed in a glass of water. Not only will this help your digestion but it has a few fringe benefits like helping with weight loss, lowering LDL cholesterol, feeding your good bacteria and reducing cravings.

5. Rule out food intolerances. GetBetterWellness.com provides a practical and simple method to identify foods that might be contributing to chronic health problems including excessive gas and other digestive issues. One simple experiment you can try on your own is to completely eliminate dairy and gluten for three weeks. Gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley, rye and a few other grains. Since gluten and dairy hide in many processed foods under names you might not recognize, it is a good idea to familiarize yourself with possible names.

6. Try supplementing with digestive enzymes at meals. A product like Omega-Zyme has 20 different digestive enzymes and is very effective.

7. Learn how to prepare flatulence-free beans using a secret ingredient, kombu. 

8. Avoid soy and processed foods that contain soy. Soy didn’t get the name “the king of musical fruit” for no reason! http://getbetterwellness.blogspot.com/2011/07/soy-king-of-musical-fruits.html The exception to this suggestion is fermented soy like tamari, miso, tempeh and natto.

Why are probiotics so important?

Probiotics, the good bacteria, have many jobs in the human body:
• Promote normal gut health and aid digestion
• Improves immunity. 70-80% of our immune system is in our gut.
• Fight foreign invaders and prevent overgrowth of yeast like candida
• Produce natural antibiotics
• Help with diarrhea caused by antibiotics, and infectious microorganisms
• Help straighten out recurring vaginal and urinary tract infections
• Help absorb nutrients and help maintain normal Vitamin B12 levels
• Help reduce LDL cholesterol

Factors that shift the balance between good and bad bacteria

Antibiotics kill bacteria, both good and bad bacteria. Taking even one round of antibiotics can disturb the balance allowing harmful bacteria and yeast to flourish in the digestive system.

Yeast overgrowth can occur anywhere in the body leading to fungal infections including thrush, athlete’s foot, diaper rash, jock itch, vaginitis, nail infections and ringworm.

Stress

Aging

Poor diet. Eating the typical American diet fosters the growth of bad bacteria in the gut. Eating a whole food diet is essential to re-establishing a healthy bacterial population. Limit or avoid processed foods, soft drinks and sugar.

Excessive alcohol intake

Environmental pollutants harm beneficial bacteria. Synthetic chemicals are found in our food, water and environment and include chlorine in tap water, cleaning products, toothpaste, mouthwash and dental fillings.

Infections from parasites, yeast or harmful bacteria

Low stomach acid encourage bad bacteria to grow. God gave us stomach acid for a purpose – to digest our food, especially meat. Taking Tums or other medication to lower stomach acid can lead to chronic digestive problems. 50% of people over age 60 have low stomach acid and may need to supplement with Betaine HCl.

Prescribed and over-the-counter medications including steroids, birth control pills, antacids, chemotherapy, aspirin, Tylenol and other NSAIDs disrupt the good bacteria.

Tobacco

Alcohol

Besides taking a probiotic supplement, eat more fermented and cultured foods like unsweetened whole milk yogurt, kefir, raw sauerkraut, kimchi or other fermented vegetables to boost your friendly bacteria. For more information, please see Sheree Gillaspie’s article, “To Your
Health! Cultured Veggies.” http://www.livingbetterat50.com/to-your-health-cultured-veggies/.

Thanks to Margaret Floyd from Eat Naked Now you can watch this short video for a demonstration showing how easy it is to make sauerkraut at home. http://www.eatnakednow.com/cooknaked/2011/01/21/get-some-culture-in-your-veggies-how-to-make-raw-fermented-vegetables/.

Gas and bloating do not have to run your life. If you do not find relief from implementing the suggestions above, consult with your doctor regarding bioidentical hormones, and drop me an email for more ideas. [email protected]

Erin Chamerlik, MT (ASCP), is a regular Health & Fitness contributor for LivingBetterat50+. Erin offers e-courses for uncovering food sensitivities and improving candidiasis. Nutrition and wellness consultations are available through local and long distance coaching. Please visit Erin’s website at http://www.getbetterwellness.com/ for more information or to receive her free newsletter.

About Erin Chamerlik

Erin Chamerlik is a health and wellness educator. She is a mentor and coach for people who are ready to change. Her company, Get Better Wellness, Inc., is based in Nashville, TN. Erin extends her message through blogging, podcasts, social media (Twitter, FaceBook, Pinterest and Instagram), workshops and on-line webinars and Facebook health communities. Connect with Erin at getbetterwellness.com

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Is There a Simple Solution for Embarrassing Gas?