Does Farting Burn Calories? Know the Facts
Does Farting Burn Calories
Farts are intestinal gas sometimes called flatulence. You might fart when you swallow a lot of air when chewing and swallowing. You may also fart because of the bacteria in your colon constantly working to break down food. If gas forms in your intestines and you don’t burp, it will travel through your intestines and out of your body.
The average person passes about 200 milliliters of gas per day through 10 or 20 farts. With all that activity, you might wonder: Does farting burn calories?
What is Fart?
To sufficiently answer this question, first you have to understand how your body actually creates a fart.
“Farting is the natural act of passing intestinal gasses through the anus. Farts are largely made up of swallowed air, chemical reactions during digestion, and additional contributions by bacteria in our gut,” says Michael Rice, MD, gastroenterologist at the University of Michigan’s Michigan Medicine Gastroenterology Clinic.
As the bacteria in your intestines feast on the food that your body doesn’t, your stomach produces gas. Along with food that is being digested, gasses including carbon dioxide, nitrogen, hydrogen and methane build up within your intestines and move out via peristalsis towards your anus.
Needless to say, your diet plays a large role in the amount of gas you’re passing.
“High FODMAP foods [i.e. added sweeteners, stone fruits, dairy products, and legumes], fermentable carbohydrates (Fermentable oligo-, di-, and mono-saccharides) are poorly absorbed, and are subsequently rapidly fermented by gut bacteria. This process produces gases leading to symptoms including bloating and distention,” says Dr. Rice. “Beans, cauliflower and broccoli are among the well-known offenders, as well as dairy products, especially for people who are lactose intolerant.”
How Many Calories Does Farting Burn
A popular Internet claim from 2015 said that one fart burned 67 calories, and that farting 52 times a day would burn 1 pound of fat. That claim has since been proved false. But is there any merit to the question?
Experts say farting is a passive activity — so it probably doesn’t burn any calories at all.
When you fart, your muscles relax and the pressure in your gut pushes the gas out without effort. You burn calories when your muscles work, not relax.
So Does Farting Burn Calories or Not?
In short: No. The “67 calories per fart” myth is just that. The closest you can get is straining your muscles to hold in flatulence — which is not recommended, but might burn a paltry few calories through “time under tension.” But you can’t shed pounds simply by letting it rip.
There are, however, some potential health benefits to not just the act of farting — which proves that your intestinal system is working well and its bacteria are doing their job — but the smell as well. Remember hydrogen sulfide? Not only can it help clear a room, research has shown that its signature “rotten egg” redolence could be the key to new treatments for diabetes, stroke, heart attacks, and dementia. A compound mimicking hydrogen sulfide’s ability to protect mitochondria is key, since preventing or reversing damage to the “cell’s powerhouse” could help not only treat these afflictions but could also help treat the overall effects of aging.
Tips To Control Farting
Now that you have no logical reason to fart 3,500 times a day to lose one pound, here are some tips that will help you keep your numbers to a minimum.
- Steer clear of allergens. Foods that we are sensitive and allergic to can take a toll on our digestive systems, which may not be prepared to digest them. This can lead to excessive flatulence.
- Stick to what you know or introduce new foods slowly. If you’re perhaps giving up meat today and preparing to become a full-fledged vegan tomorrow, expect the wind to blow. Foods high in fiber can cause a lot of gas until your digestive system gets used to them.
- Cleanse. Keeping your intestinal tract clean keeps it working like a well-oiled machine. This means it’s able to digest food easily and quickly, reducing gas.
- Don’t drink carbonated beverages. The carbonation adds a bunch of carbon dioxide to your digestive system. It ends of coming out of one end or the other.