A gassy stomach can strike anytime and can be very embarrassing, to say the least. It is actually quite a painful experience often leading to stomach cramps, bloating, heaviness and heartburn. Medically known as flatulence, it is a condition where excess gas gets collected in your digestive tract. But to deal with the problem, it’s first crucial to understand why it occurs.
Gas can collect in your digestive system in two ways. While eating or drinking, you swallow the air that causes the oxygen and nitrogen to enter your body. The second and more important reason is when you digest your food; gases like hydrogen, methane or carbon di oxide are emitted and get accumulated in your stomach. If not released or in excess, these gases can cause a lot of discomfort.
A lot also depends on your daily food choices. High carb foods like beans, cabbage, chickpeas, and lentils or sugary fruit juices are not easily digested by the stomach. They pass through the colon which contains a lot of bacteria that help in breaking down the food while releasing gases that can accumulate and make you feel uneasy.
The good thing is that you can reach out to a lot of kitchen ingredients to get rid of gas trouble naturally. Here are the five best home remedies for gas that work without fail.
1. Ajwain or Carom Seeds
“Carom seeds contain a compound called thymol which secretes gastric juices that help in digestion,” explains Bangalore-based Nutritionist Dr. Anju Sood. You can have about half a teaspoon of carom seeds with water once a day to feel better.
2. Jeera Water
Drinking jeera water is a great natural remedy to curb gas. “Jeera or cumin contains essential oils that stimulate the salivary glands which helps in better digestion of food and prevents the formation of excess gas,” says Dr. Sood. Take a tablespoon of cumin seeds and boil it in two cups of water for 10-15 minutes. Let it cool down, strain and drink the water after having your meals.
3. Asafoetida (Heeng)
Dr. Sood also suggests that you could mix about half a teaspoon of heeng with luke warm water and drink it. Heeng acts as an anti-flatulent that prevents the growth of the gut bacteria that may be producing excess gas in your stomach. According to Ayurveda, heeng helps in balancing the vata dosha of the body. In his book, ‘Ayurvedic Home Remedies’, Dr. Vasant Lad explains that the colon is the main seat of the vata dosha – the dosha that is derived from air. When vata increases in the colon, gases may build up.
4. Fresh ginger
A great Ayurvedic remedy is to grate about one teaspoon of fresh ginger and have it with one teaspoon of lime juice after your meals as per Dr. Vasant Lad’s advice. Drinking ginger tea is also an effective remedy for gas relief. Ginger acts as a natural carminative (agents that relieve flatulence).
5. Lime juice with baking powder
Another simple remedy suggested by Ayurveda expert Dr. Vasant Lad to reduce excess gas is to stir 1 teaspoon of lime juice and half teaspoon of baking soda with a cup of water. Drink this after your meals as it helps in forming carbon di oxide which facilitates the digestion process.
Herbal powder Triphala is also quite helpful in dealing with a gassy stomach. Steep half teaspoon of it in boiling water for 5-10 minutes and then drink it before going to bed. Be careful with the quantity and frequency of consuming this mix as it is high in fibre and may cause bloating if taken in excess.
Flatulence is a normal condition and it happens to most of us but if you suffer from it regularly, it could be a sign of a serious disorder like lactose intolerance, hormonal imbalance or some kind of bowel obstruction. It’s always good to resort to natural solutions rather than popping pills but if the problem persists don’t ignore fixing up an appointment with your doctor.