It hit me last week for a few days and do I ever feel sorry for my wife. No matter what I did, I could not stop farting. Thankfully, the few days of flatulence passed and things got back to normal.
This has been a rather common occurrence during COVID. It’s not anything caused by the virus, but rather the disruptions it has made to most of our lives. Shifting diets, activity levels, and stress can all lead to flatulence and indigestion.
With stay at home orders and instructions to run necessary errands on a weekly or biweekly basis, it’s highly likely your diet has undergone some change. The fresh food you may have consumed regularly is no longer available.
To many, it has resulted in eating more processed foods or eating the same foods for days at time. When you’re not getting all of the nutrients you need or adequate fiber, your gut knows it. One way it can react is by slowing down your digestive system.
If your GI tract is not moving fast enough, waste (poop) essentially sits there and it can lead to gas. You may be able to help this by making a concerted effort to eat more fiber and opt for less processed foods.
When the time does come for a trip to the grocery store, load up with a diverse array of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains to boost fiber and nutrient intake.
Stress can also play a role in indigestion. There is evidence to suggest stress can alter gut microbiota and the digestive process. Flatulence can be one way that stress manifests itself. Mindfulness, acceptance, meditation, or other activities can help reduce stress.
The way you eat can also be influenced by stress. If you’re eating a lot, and quickly, you could be swallowing more oxygen than you normally would. This is yet another way your gut can produce more gas.
Finally, trying to find as many ways as possible to be active can help ease gas and lead to faster transit times. Too much sitting can keep waste in your gut while moving and muscle contractions can help push waste through so you’re not as gassy.
Although flatulence may be a byproduct of the various lifestyle changes caused by the pandemic, there are ways to get a handle on it.