Gas is a natural result of digestion, but excessive gas can be uncomfortable and embarrassing. It can cause painful stomach cramps, especially when you try to hold the gas in. Many people find that they get much gassier in the evening or while they sleep, which can also be frustrating if they share a bed with their partner. Luckily, there are lots of strategies you can try to stop being gassy at night.
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One common cause of excessive farting is taking too much air in. This can happen when you drink with a straw, smoke, or eat too quickly. Some foods are also known to increase gas, especially foods that are high in fiber. Avoiding some particular foods can help, but you don’t have to make drastic changes to your diet to fix this problem. Here are six tips to help you stop being gassy at night:
1. Reduce Intake of Foods That Cause Excess Gas
It’s likely that certain foods are responsible for your gas. Try eliminating one food at a time for a couple weeks to narrow it down. Common foods that cause gas include:
- Lentils and beans
- Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and asparagus
- Lactose, which is found in milk
- Fructose, which is found in artichokes, onions, wheat, and some drinks
- Sorbitol, an artificial sweetener
Keeping a food diary can also help you figure out which foods worsen gas for you. When you’re exceptionally gassy, check what you ate that day and the day before and try to find a pattern.
You probably won’t have to completely eliminate foods that cause gas, but reducing your consumption of them will help. If the problem is especially bad when you sleep, focus specifically on what you eat for dinner.
2. Avoid Carbonated Drinks Before Bed
Carbonated drinks can create air pockets in your intestines, which will lead to intestinal pain and embarrassing gas. Many carbonated drinks also contain fructose, a sweetener that causes bloating and gas in some people. If you usually drink a carbonated beverage with dinner, try switching to water instead.
3. Drink Before Meals
Most people like to drink something as they eat dinner, but drinking before your meal might be better than drinking during it. Drinking fluids while you eat can cause you to lose stomach acids, which prevents you from breaking down your foods properly and leads to excess gas in your intestines. Try drinking a glass of water 30 minutes before dinner instead of drinking during dinner. It might be hard to adjust to this, but it could help stop you from farting in your sleep.
4. Eat a High Fiber Breakfast
Foods with lots of fiber are known for causing excessive gas, so it may seem counter-intuitive to eat a high fiber breakfast. However, if your main problem is farting in your sleep, eating fiber in the morning may be the perfect solution. A breakfast with plenty of fiber can trigger a bowel movement earlier in the day, which will eliminate gas. Some high fiber breakfast option include:
- Greek yogurt with fruit
- Bran flakes or shredded wheat cereal
- Peanut butter
5. Eat Slowly
When you eat quickly, you might be swallowing extra air, which can cause gas. Eating slowly, especially during your evening meal, will reduce the amount of air and gas in your digestive system while you sleep. It can be hard to break the habit of eating quickly, but it’s an easy way to try to combat gas without giving up any of your favorite foods.
Try to eat in a calm environment without distractions. Instead of eating while watching TV or looking at your phone, focus on your food. This will prevent you from accidentally scarfing down your meal. Also, put down your utensils between each bite. If you’re eating a sandwich or something else with your hands, put the food down between bites. Don’t prepare your next bite until you’ve finished chewing and swallowing the current bite. Over time, eating slowly will become a habit, and you may notice a big difference in your digestion.
6. Change Your Sleeping Position
If you sleep on your stomach, your sleeping position may be worsening your gas problem. Lying on your stomach increases the pressure on your abdominal area, which could cause excessive gas to escape while you sleep. Sleeping on your left side is recommended for controlling excessive gas. This position will allow your colon to relax and will reduce the pressure on your intestines.