Facing gas or bloating problems?
It is as common as a part of our everyday lives. In fact, research indicates that an average human being discharges gas about 13-14 times in a day! Now that’s normal.
Gas is expelled because of the process of digestion but when your digestion process is not right and there is more and more gas in the intestines, you start feeling pains and discomfort. These gas pains can be easily cured, provided you know the best home remedies.
This article will give you simple and easy tricks that can help you with your gas pains and also prevent them from occurring over and over again.
There are a number of reasons you might start getting gas pains and unfortunately the healthiest and the most fibrous foods are the culprit. They are most often the cause of these pains.
Here are some of the most common causes of gas pains:
- High fiber foods: Eating highly fibrous foods, especially fruits and vegetables, whole grains, peas and legumes can cause gas and also lead to immense pains if they are added too much into your diet. If you have to eat them, please do, but start slow and introduce these in your diet steadily
- Carbonated Beverages: Beer and beverages like Coke and Pepsi are also common reasons of getting gas pains
- Constipation: One of the most common causes, you can get bloating and discomfort when you are suffering from constipation
- Swallowed air: When you swallow air by mistake, especially if you are nervous or you are chewing on a candy or you have food too fast, some of the gas gets settled in your digestive tract and causes pains
- Food intolerances: Food allergies or intolerance might also be the reason of gas pain. So people who are lactose intolerant or are gluten allergic may feel bloating and discomfort if they end up eating the forbidden food
Now that you know the reasons why you might get gas, here are some common symptoms to recognize the pains.
Some of the most common ways of recognizing gas pains are these:
- Abdominal pains: Pains that are mostly situated in the mid of the stomach are a common way to recognize gas pains
- Cramps in the abdominal region: A sudden, piercing stab of pain in your stomach is also an indicator that you have gas
- Swelling or bloating: A kind of swelling or a feeling of being too full indicates that you have gas
- Knots in the stomach: Sometimes feeling that you have knots can also mean that you have gas and pains are going to begin soon
Keep these symptoms in mind the next time you feel there is a slight discomfort. Being aware of the various problems in the body will help you recognize the pain and also take quick remedial action.
How to Get Rid of Gas Pain
Getting rid of gas pains is very easy and you can do it with very few resources. In fact, most of the stuff is available in your kitchen!
So, let’s get started!
1. Hot Water
Things you need: Some lukewarm drinking water
Directions: As soon as you get up in the morning, take sips of lukewarm water.
How it works: The warm water will help to reduce any pains associated with the gas and also reduce bloating
How frequent to use: If you frequently suffer from gas pains, make it a habit to have warm water every morning as soon as you get up
2. Peppermint Tea
Things you need: Peppermint tea or peppermint supplements
Directions: Take some peppermint tea and make a concoction out of it. You can also have peppermint supplements
How it works: Peppermint is an active ingredient that makes an excellent cure for an irritable bowel syndrome that might lead to gas
How frequent to use: Have a cup of peppermint tea before a meal to make sure that you don’t get gas
3. Chamomile Tea
Things you need: Chamomile tea
Directions: Make strong concoction of chamomile tea and drink it every day to help with indigestion
How it works: Chamomile tea works wonders for the tummy and prevents indigestion. It can also help remove trapped gas and prevent bloating
How frequent to use: Have it every day before a meal or before going to sleep for best results
4. Eat Yogurt
Things you need: Any flavoured or plain yogurt, if possible stick to homemade ones
Directions: Have the yogurt as a snack or as dessert
How it works: Yogurt is high in probiotics that aids with digestion and also helps to increase the bacteria that will prevent indigestion
How frequent to use: Have it after a heavy meal or whenever you feel a little gassy. It will help remove any bloating and indigestion.
5. Ginger Tea
Things you need: Ginger crushed and mixed in liquor tea
Directions: Crush some ginger and add it to the black tea to get a string concoction
How it works: Ginger tea is good when you are suffering from gas pains because it acts as a muscle relaxant and helps to relieve gases in a constricted digestive system. When these constrictions are relieved with the help of ginger tea, your digestive gases are removed and bloating also get alleviated
How frequent to use: You can have ginger tea once every day or two of them when you have had an especially heavy meal
6. Lemon Juice
Things you need: One teaspoon of salt, lemon juice (from one lemon) and a warm glass of water
Directions: Mix all the three together and have it at the start of the day
How it works: This mixture works extremely well to remove gas pains and is also a great way to kick start your day and your metabolism
How frequent to use: To improve your metabolism and digestion, have this concoction every single day just when you get up. You could also add honey to it and skip the salt for a more potent potion
Things you need: Cubes of papaya
Directions: Chop the papaya into cubes or in sizes comfortable for you to eat
How it works: The enzymes in papaya aid in digestion. One particular enzyme called papain is very good for relieving bloating and can help with the gas pains
How frequent to use: If you’re frequently suffering from gas pains, you can easily substitute your fruit intake and switch over to papaya. It’s not only easily digestible but it tastes great too!
8. Lemon & honey
Things you need: Juice of one lemon, one teaspoon honey and warm water
Directions: Mix all the three together and have it at the start of the day
How it works: Lemon and honey are a great way to start your day. It helps in improving digestion and at the same time also increases your metabolism
How frequent to use: Start your day with this mix and you will see how your digestion process gets better by the day. It’s a simple enough mixture and you could have it even more than once a day!
Things you need: Pumpkin – one cup
Directions: The best thing about pumpkin is the fact that it can be had in multiple ways. You can have it boiled, broiled or even cooked in the form of a curry
How it works: Pumpkin helps to reduce the amount of gas being created and aids in digestion
How frequent to use: Have pumpkin at least in one meal every day to ward off gas pains
10. Activated charcoal
Things you need: Over the counter activated charcoal capsules
Directions: Activated charcoal capsules can be bought in any pharmacy
How it works: Some scientists believe that the porous nature of activated charcoal is very good to trap the gas and hence helps in reducing gas pains
How frequent to use: Have one capsule before and after a meal to get rid of gas pains
11. Fennel Seeds
Things you need: Fennel seeds – also known as saunf
Directions: You can use fennel seeds as a tempering material in curries or you can even chew them
How it works: fennel seeds help to relax the digestive tract and hence helps expelling the gas trapped inside
How frequent to use: You can chew fennel seeds after every meal – it helps in digestion and also makes your mouth feel fresh after a particularly heavy meal
12. Apply Heat to Your Belly
Things you need: Hot water bottle or a hot bath
Directions: Lie down in a comfortable place and use a hot water bottle to alleviate the pain in your tummy. Taking a hot bath also has a similar effect
How it works: There is a lot of tightness in the abdominal region when you have gas. The heat helps to reduce that tightness and also removes the pain
How frequent to use: Whenever your gas pains are severe, you could use the hot water bottle for comfort
Exercises for Gas Relief
Besides these home remedies, there are certain exercises which when practiced daily can help in digestion and prevent any kind of gas pains.
Here are some of the most common exercises:
Walking is one of the simplest exercises that will help with your gas pain. After a very heavy meal you generally feel like taking a nap, instead go for a slow walk around your locality or in a park taking slow and deliberate steps. Brisk walking is not ideal after a heavy meal.
How to do: Go for short walks that are about 10-15 minutes
How it works: When you do physical activities like walking or jogging and calisthenics, your digestive tract is stimulated and the passage of gas becomes much easier. Hence, any bloating or gassy feelings can be avoided
Best time to do it: After your meal, instead of retiring to your bed immediately, go for a short walk and help your body to digest the food better
One of the most loathed exercises ever, crunches have never been loved. But this power packed exercise actually helps to release the gas and make you more comfortable with your stomach
How to do: Lie on your back and bend your knees in a 45-degree angle. Inhale as you lift your head, neck and shoulders off of the mat. Concentrate on contracting the abdominal muscles. And make sure that you are allowing your abs to do the lifting for you. Repeat this exercise for 12 to15 times.
How it works: When you are doing regular crunches, your stomach muscles are in a much better state and you are able to move gas more effectively through the digestive tract
Best time to do it: You can do crunches every day. Avoid doing crunches after a heavy meal
This is a special breathing technique that involves heavy and focused breathing to aid digestion
How to do: Take deep breaths from your abdomen. These breaths should be very deliberate and you should focus when you are breathing in and out
How it works: Breathing techniques like these help your digestive tract and prevent formation of gas inside the stomach
Best time to do it: Since the exercises are very simple, you could do them anytime and anywhere
Yoga For Gas Relief
Apanasana or Knee hugged to chest position
How to do: Take a yoga mat and lie down on it. Relax and while inhaling place your hands on your knees. Now slowly exhale while bringing your knees to your chest and hugging them
How it works: It is a wind-relieving stretch and helps to expel gas from the digestive tract
Best time to do it: You can perform this stretch any time during the day, make sure you don’t do it after a heavy meal because you might not feel comfortable after it
Balasana or Child’s Pose
How to do:
- A simple stretch, balasana requires you to sit on your haunches and on your knees with your feet apart.
- Now stretch your back and hands and reach out to the floor.
- Touch your forehead to the floor while keeping the arms straight
How it works: Balasana stretches out your digestive tract and helps in digestion
Best time to do it: This simple stretch can be done any time, only thing to keep in mind is to remember that the stretch should be done for up to five breaths
Baddha Konasana or the Bound Angle Pose
How to do:
- This asana should be done while sitting erect.
- First get into that position and stretch your legs out.
- While breathing out, bend your knees and slowly start pulling your heels towards your pelvis.
- Press the soles of your feet very close together and make sure that you are allowing your knees to drop to the sides.
How it works: The Baddha konasana is a great way to increase the circulation in the middle, stomach region. Over time it will help to release the tension in the midriff region and help in digestion.
Best time to do it: This asana should be avoided when a lady is pregnant or menstruating. Also, this asana should be performed under strict supervision
Pavanmuktasana or wind-relieving asana
How to do:
- In this asana you have to lie down on a yoga mat with your hands beside your body.
- Slowly breathe in and as you exhale, bright your right knee towards your chest and press your thigh on your stomach.
- Now breathe in again and lift your head and chest off the floor and touch your forehead to your right knee.
- Hold that position and take a few deep breaths.
- Now come back to the ground and repeat the process with your other foot
How it works: The pose is an excellent gas relieving pose that will help to ease the digestive tract and make it easier to digest food
Best time to do it: Everyone can do it, but it is especially good to do one or two hours after a meal. People with high blood pressure and hypertension should avoid it
Avoid Foods that Cause Gas Pains
To prevent any kind of gas pains, the best is to avoid food that causes the pains. Here are the top five foods that will make you gassy and bloated:
1. Dairy products
Dairy products are the most common cause of gas. This is because most of us don’t even realize that we might be lactose intolerant. This is the sugar that is present in most dairy products and often causes gas
Beans are very rich in a complex sugar known as raffinose. This sugar is extremely difficult to be digested by the body and hence it releases gas. Raffinose is broken down inside the stomach into gases like methane and hydrogen which ultimately lead to more gas. To reduce the amount of gas in the beans, you should soak them overnight before consuming.
Not all fruits cause gas but we are guessing that some of your favourite foods might be the culprit of your gassy mornings. Fruits such as apple, peaches and pears contain a sugar called sorbitol that is very difficult for the body to digest and hence it leads to an increase in the production of gas.
4. Processed Food
Processed food contains a variety of sugars that again the body has trouble in digesting and hence it can lead to gas.
5. Broccoli and Brussels Sprouts
Brussels sprouts and broccoli are extremely healthy vegetables but they are also major gas creators. They can make you very bloated and might also cause gas pains
While some of the above foods can be totally avoided, healthy stuff like broccoli and fruits should not be avoided. Instead you could talk to a doctor to find out proper ways of eliminating or reducing these items from your diet.
Lifestyle to Follow
The most important thing to prevent any gas pains is to follow a healthy and happy lifestyle. Prevention they say is the best cure.
Here are some things you should be doing to prevent gas and other associated pains:
Drink Water: Water is the most precious thing in your diet and every day you should drink at least 2L of water to keep yourself hydrated and also to keep your body in the best possible state
Proper Sleep: For an adult, 7-8 hours of sleep every night is essential. Sleep will help to repair your body and replenish all the energy that is needed to start the day afresh!
Manage your Diet: A majority of the problems that people face in their daily lives is because of not focusing on a good and healthy diet. Half your problems are solved when you have a good and balanced diet
Chew food thoroughly: When you chew your food thoroughly, it makes it easier for the digestive juices to process the food better and hence efficiently digest the food.
Prevention and Precautions
Instead of visiting a doctor to cure all your gassy issues, shouldn’t you be taking the right precautions?
Here are some good ways to prevent gas and pains:
- Like we mentioned, stay away from the different types of food that cause gas
- Avoid eating too fast and chew your food thoroughly before ingesting it further
- Reduce your intake of fizzy drinks and also alcohol because they cause gas
- Tension and anxiety may also lead to gas, so you should try and avoid being tensed all the time
- Find out with your nutritionist whether you are lactose intolerant. If yes, you should try and avoid milk products and switch to alternative products like soy milk
- A balanced diet that gives you all the nutrition will also help prevent gas
- Make sure you are having food at the right time. Skipping meals will not help in digestion and you will end up eating more food in a different meal and hence your digestive system may not be able to cope with it
- Avoid overeating
- Always exercise and make it apart of your daily routine
- Hydrate yourself timely
When should you see a Doctor?
Many a time something as simple as gas may trigger an abdominal pain and it might be difficult for you to bear.
But when is the time you should actually be aware of the pain and see a medical professional?
- If your stomach pain is concentrated in a particular area it means that one of your organs is not doing well. You should call a doctor immediately
- If your stomach pain is in waves and keeps coming and going, it is probably an indication that you have kidney stones
- If your pains last more than a day, you should immediately seek medical help
This lowdown on how to prevent pains associated with gas and home remedies will provide you quick relief from these pains.