GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION (Flatulence)
WHAT DOES IT MEAN? WHAT'S CAUSING IT? WHAT CAN YOU DO?
Are you prone to a problem with 'Gas, irregular digestion'?
Got a gassy gut? Frequent farting and flatulence isn't just embarrassing, it's also unhealthy. Prompt action is necessary. Passing gas is an important warning sign your body has weak digestion, metabolism, and compromised immunity. Gas is considered a disease in Ayurveda. A solution to your gas problems is one of the most important steps you can take to restore your health & vitality.
Although it may seem like everything you eat creates gas, or like your belly blows up like a balloon for unexplained reasons, resolving gas has been the cornerstone of health in Ayurveda for 5,000 years. Ayurveda offers a comprehensive perspective on steps you can take to restore happiness and cheerfulness to your tummy.
Breaking the IceTalking about farts can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. Given the importance of digestive health in Ayurveda, we've got to break the ice somehow. Let's start with some fart facts:
The Significance of Gas to Your Health
Gas is formed when food ferments, i.e. rots, in the digestive tract. This happens when your body is too weak to digest and absorb nutrients from your food quickly enough. The small intestine is 22ft and the colon is 5ft long. Imagine there is a race in your gut between your intestines and the normal bacteria living in your gut. If you win the race, digest your food before the bacteria, and eliminate it, you nourish your body and have very little gas. If bacteria win the race, you'll have lots of gas, bloating and malabsorption.
When bacteria ferment the food in your gut, they not only produce gas, they also excrete other toxins, i.e. bacteria poop and piss. Your small intestine can start to resemble a raw sewage dump site. These toxins are poisonous and irritate the lining of the digestive tract. Some of the poison is absorbed into the blood, where it aggravates the liver and kidneys. If your liver can't process the poison, your body will purge it through the kidneys, skin, and breath, creating excess urine, bad breath, and acne. Toxic blood weakens all of your organs. That's why it is vitally important to address chronic gas conditions as quickly as possible.
The effects of gas on the nervous system and joints deserves special attention. Neurons are very sensitive to changes in blood chemistry. When the blood is poisoned, a person often feel scattered, ungrounded, nervous and anxious. Chronic gas can lead to poor decisions. Discomfort in the abdomen makes a person hyper and impulsive. They may lose their 'common sense' or 'street smarts'. Since joints have such poor circulation, any chronic toxic buildup tends to accumulate in the joint space leading to arthritic conditions. Since the immune system may be busy fighting gut bacteria, the immune system may become over stimulated or weak, depending on the constitution.
What causes gas, from a western medical perspective?
What is intestinal gas made of?
Abdominal gas is composed of oxygen; nitrogen; hydrogen; carbon dioxide; and methane. The oxygen and nitrogen come from the air. The other gases come from bacterial fermentation. The unpleasant odor of flatulence comes from bacteria that release skatole, indole, and sulfur. Intestinal gas may be flammable if the concentration of hydrogen and methane is too high, however only 1/3 of people produce methane. The noises of gas are produced by vibration of your anal sphincter, and occasionally closed buttocks.
Western Treatment of Abdominal Gas
Ayurveda Perspectives on What Causes Gas
Intestinal gas is generally considered to be a condition of weak digestion, fundamentally a Vata disorder in samana vayu, one of the five subtypes of Vata dosha. Many Vata people experience abdominal gas after cold and difficult to digest foods like beans or cabbage. Symptoms include lower abdominal pain and bloating, particularly in the cecum located in the lower right side of the pelvic bowl. Pitta people often have abdominal bloating after eating spicy or oily foods. Bloating is primarily in the small intestine around the belly button along with sharp pain above the belly button. Kapha people may become gassy from gooey foods like bread and cheese. They experience heavy, sluggish stomach. There are many types of imbalances that could lead to gas. The primary types are:
Synonyms and Keywords
gas, abdominal gas, intestinal gas, farting, breaking wind, passing gas, bloating, belch, belching, aerophagia, flatus, lactose intolerance, abdominal pain, abdominal discomfort, flatulence
ARE YOU NEW TO AYURVEDA?Are you wondering what Ayurveda is and how to use it for 'Gas, irregular digestion' and health in general? LEARN MORE
FAVOR HERBS WITH THESE MEDICINAL PROPERTIESIngredient and herbs each have unique effects on the various organs of your body. Herbalists study these effects and categorize them, so it is easy to identify which foods and herbs are most helpful for your unique body type. Click on the medicinal properties below to learn more about them, and to figure out which recipes, ingredients and products will be a good match for you. Individual results will vary depending upon the root cause of your imbalance. The following medicinal properties are useful for a general case of 'Gas, irregular digestion'. You must independently verify whether these medicinal properties address the root causes of your case of Gas, irregular digestion.
Heart & Circulation:
ALTERATIVELiterally, an herb that restores the proper function of the body. In practice, alteratives are usually blood cleansers and blood chemistry balancers. They were traditionally used to revitalize and detoxify after a long winter.
BLOOD-TONICAn herb that produces more blood cells in the body or otherwise strengthens blood. Helpful for anemia and other types of deficiency.
VASODILATORA vasodilator is an herb that widens the blood vessels by the relaxation of smooth muscle cells within the vessel walls, thereby increasing circulation systemically or to a local area.
ANTIMICROBIALAn agent that kills microorganisms or inhibits their growth. Antimicrobial is an umbrella term that can be broken down into specific categories of target microorganism, such as anti-bacterials, fungals, and virals.
Kidney & Urinary:
ANTIDIURETICAn herb that suppresses the formation of urine. They help retain fluids and rehydrate by reducing urination. They oppose diuresis.
Mind, Stress & Sleep:
NERVINEHerbs that specifically go to the nervous system and brain. They can help with stress, memory, early alzheimer?s, even chronic pain.
GENERAL-LAXATIVEPromotes a bowel movement. General laxative is an umbrella term that refers to several different types of laxatives...
DIET TO BALANCE 'GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION'
DO YOU WANT TO LEARN MORE ABOUT YOUR UNIQUE BODY?
What aggravates it? What heals it? Then get your Personal Ayurvedic Body Book! This book, written by founder and director of Joyful Belly, John Immel, is individually formatted for your unique body and will help you confidently choose food that restores your healthy glow to get you feeling like your best self. Just $19.99!
EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES FOR GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTIONBrowse these educational resources for 'Gas, irregular digestion'.
SPECIALITY FORMULAS, AYURVEDIC HERBS, & NATURAL PRODUCTS FOR GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTIONWe've specially chosen these products because of their potential for healing imbalances associated with 'Gas, irregular digestion'. Choose a product from this list that also matches your imbalanced doshas and qualities, to ensure a good fit. Please review these products to determine which are right for you. Before making any changes to your health and wellness routine, please check with your medical doctor.
Additional Herbs & ProductsTriphala,   Trikatu,   Hingvastak Churna,   Licorice Root,   Parasite Flush Drops,   Haritaki,   Cardamom Tincture,   Cardamom,   Chitrak
REMOVE THE CAUSES OF YOUR IMBALANCEWith Gas, irregular digestion, one or more of the following doshas and qualities may be aggravated. If you have an imbalance of one of these doshas or qualities, Ayurveda recommends avoiding foods and lifestyle habits that aggravate that quality and/or dosha. These imbalanced doshas and qualities will need to be brought back into balance before this condition can be healed. Click on the quality to learn what foods and lifestyle habits should be avoided. If you have a systemic imbalance of one of these doshas or qualities, Ayurveda would generally recommend avoiding foods and lifestyle habits with that quality.
GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION USUALLY MEANS THESE
|GUNA||FOODS TO AVOID||DO YOU HAVE THIS IMBALANCE?|
|AVOID THESE TOXIC FOODS THAT MAY AGGRAVATE GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION||
Status UnknownTake these quizzes to find out if you have an imbalance of 'Toxic' guna
|AVOID THESE DRY FOODS THAT MAY AGGRAVATE GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION||
Status UnknownTake these quizzes to find out if you have an imbalance of 'Dry' guna
|AVOID THESE DIFFICULT FOODS THAT MAY AGGRAVATE GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION||
Status UnknownTake these quizzes to find out if you need to decrease Difficult to digest foods
|AVOID THESE COLD FOODS THAT MAY AGGRAVATE GAS, IRREGULAR DIGESTION||
Status UnknownTake these quizzes to find out if you have an imbalance of 'Cold' guna
To learn more about the symbols above, click on them.
On Joyful Belly, we've created an extensive categorization of food in relation to qualities (gunas). By eating an optimal diet that balances your gunas, your whole body is strengthened and the conditions that created the disorder are removed. Once the root causes of the disease are removed, the disease lessens in strength or disappears altogether. Additional remedies - such as herbs and lifestyle practices - focused on the specific disorder, can greatly enhance your healing.
About the AuthorJohn Immel, the founder of Joyful Belly, teaches people how to have a healthy diet and lifestyle with Ayurveda. His approach to Ayurveda exudes a certain ease, which many find enjoyable and insightful. His online course Balance Your Ayurvedic Diet in a Week provides tools for gracefully healing with Ayurveda to thousands. John also directs Joyful Belly's School of Ayurveda , which specializes in digestive tract pathology & Ayurvedic nutrition. John and his wife Natalie recently published Explore Your Hunger: A Guide to Hunger, Appetite & Food.
John's interest in Ayurveda and digestive tract pathology was inspired by a complex digestive disorder acquired from years of international travel, including his public service work in South Asia. John's commitment to the detailed study of digestive disorders reflects his zeal to get down to the roots of the problem. His hope and belief in the capacity of each & every client to improve their quality of life is nothing short of a personal passion. John's creativity in the kitchen and delight in cooking for others comes from his family oriented upbringing. In addition to his certification in Ayurveda, John holds a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Harvard University.
John enjoys sharing Ayurveda within the context of his Catholic roots, and finds Ayurveda gives him an opportunity to participate in the healing mission of the Church. Jesus expressed God's love by feeding and healing the sick. That kindness is the fundamental ministry of Ayurveda as well.
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