How To Get Rid of Gas Pain With These 4 Natural Remedies

Relieving yourself of gas pain might be as simple as belching, passing gas, or having a bowel movement. However, if recurring gas pain is an issue, it may indicate a larger problem such as irritable bowel syndrome or poor eating habits. 

Fortunately, with help from a trusted functional medicine doctor, you can pursue natural remedies to reduce discomfort from trapped intestinal gas.

In this article, we’ll tell you how to get rid of gas pain and explain why you may develop abdominal pain and cramping.

What Is Gas Pain?

When gas is unable to move through your digestive system, it builds up in your large intestine and leads to gas pain. 

Gas pain is a general term for the abdominal pain you experience as a result of trapped or slow-moving gas.

Trapped gas and gas pain typically occur with other symptoms:

  • Bloating
  • Flatulence (passing gas/farting)
  • Belching (burping)
  • Constipation

Causes of Gas Pain

Reasons for gas pain can range from your diet to a pre-existing gastrointestinal disorder. Here are four possible causes of gas pain:

1. Fermentable Carbohydrates

Fermentable carbs, also known as FODMAPs, are short-chain carbohydrates and sugar alcohols that are a favorite food source for your gut bacteria. In some people, eating high FODMAP foods leads to an overgrowth of bad bacteria. These bacteria produce gases in the digestive tract, resulting in digestive problems [1]. 

High-FODMAP foods can increase bacterial overgrowth and create gas pain. These include:

  • Bread, cereals, pasta, and legumes, which contain oligosaccharides
  • Dairy products, which contain lactose, a disaccharide
  • Some fruits and sweeteners with fructose, which is a monosaccharide
  • Select fruits and vegetables plus artificial sweeteners that contain polyols 

2. Gluten

Gluten is a protein typically found in bread and cereal — more specifically, anything made with the grains wheat, barley, or rye. 

Anyone with gluten sensitivity or the autoimmune condition, celiac disease, will have a reaction to this ingredient, which can present as gas pain, bloating, and constipation among other symptoms. 

Gluten-containing foods that may cause gas pain in sensitive individuals include:

  • Most bread and pastries 
  • Condiments such as soy sauce and certain salad dressings
  • Pasta and noodles
  • Beer and other malt beverages

3. Gastrointestinal Disorders

Many gastrointestinal disorders will yield gas pain and other related symptoms. Certain foods, stress, poor sleeping habits, and lack of sufficient exercise may trigger flare-ups in people with these conditions.

Health conditions that cause gas pain include:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) [2]
  • Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis [3
  • Celiac disease [4]
  • Lactose intolerance [5]
  • Food intolerance [6]
  • Small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) [7]

4. Swallowing Air

Sometimes, it’s not what you eat but how you eat that creates gas pain. Eating too quickly causes you to swallow excess air. That leads to bloating and abdominal pain as gas builds up in your intestine [8]. 

Chewing gum and smoking can have similar effects since these habits cause you to swallow small air pockets that ultimately turn into intestinal gas [9].

How To Get Rid of Gas Pain

If you want to know how to get rid of gas pain naturally, there are several measures you can take. Consult with a functional medicine doctor for help with finding the root cause of your gas pain and determining the best treatment options. 

The following four steps will help you get rid of gas pain:

1. Change Your Diet

A natural way to get rid of gas pain is to change your diet. This is often the first and easiest step you can take.

One diet to consider is low-FODMAP, which removes fermentable carbohydrates responsible for gas pain, bloating, and general gut issues. Beyond an elimination diet, there are other smart eating choices you can make.

Try changing your diet for 2-3 weeks and see if it makes a difference in your symptoms. For some patients, doing this may be all that’s required to alleviate gas pain but patients with more stubborn conditions will benefit from seeing a specialist.

Low-FODMAP Diet

Since fermentable carbohydrates contribute to gas pain and other gastrointestinal discomforts, consider adopting a low-FODMAP diet to eliminate trigger foods. It’s considered one of the best diets for IBS patients, but going low-FODMAP may help anyone with recurrent gas pain [10]. 

Some examples of low-FODMAP foods are:

  • Leafy greens like lettuce and bok choy
  • Vegetables like Brussels sprouts and zucchini
  • Fruits like blueberries, cantaloupe, and grapes
  • Grains like quinoa and millet
  • Lactose-free dairy and aged cheeses

Two meta-analyses found a low-FODMAP diet reduces abdominal cramping and other digestive symptoms [11, 12]. Additional studies show a low-FODMAP diet can help normalize bowel movements, which in turn will allow gas to pass through your digestive tract more easily [13, 14, 15]. 

It’s recommended you try a low-FODMAP diet for 2-3 weeks. Keep a food diary to track any positive or negative changes in your symptoms. If symptoms don’t change or become worse, discontinue the diet and try another approach.

Other Dietary Changes

Anyone with celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity can benefit from a gluten-free diet [16, 17]. This approach is only helpful if you are actually sensitive to gluten. 

You can figure this out by committing to a gluten-free diet for 2-3 weeks, then reintroducing gluten into your diet. If you don’t experience gas pain and other digestive symptoms during the elimination and reintroduction period, you do not need to continue with a gluten-free diet.

Lactose intolerance is another common condition that causes gas pain and digestive discomfort [18, 19]. If you suspect a lactose intolerance is contributing to your issues, eliminate dairy products from your diet for 2-3 weeks and monitor your symptoms closely.

Cutting back on or eliminating fatty foods may also help reduce gas pain and other symptoms [20].

2. Probiotics

Probiotic bacteria are live microorganisms that keep your gut healthy. Research shows that probiotics are effective for reducing gas pain and relieving bloating [21, 22]. 

Daily probiotics are generally safe for long-term use and have very few side effects. IBS patients with SIBO can especially benefit from taking probiotics to improve their symptoms [23, 24, 25, 26].

Every patient has a unique gut microbiome, so speak with your doctor to find the best combination of probiotics to suit your needs.

3. Supplements

Diet alone may help relieve gas pain, but not always. Taking a natural supplement can help you get rid of gas pain. 

Although these are natural remedies, it’s still best to consult with your doctor before starting any supplements — especially if you’re currently taking medication and are pregnant or breastfeeding. 

These natural supplements may help reduce gas pain and other gastrointestinal discomforts:

  • Some meta-analyses state peppermint oil, which is a natural antispasmodic, can effectively treat abdominal pain and bloating with minimal side effects [27, 28]. 
  • Activated charcoal has been shown to reduce gas pain related to SIBO and IBS, although more current research is needed [29, 30, 31, 32].
  • Apple cider vinegar is considered a go-to natural remedy for eliminating gas pain but there is limited evidence to back those claims [33, 34]. However, low stomach acid can make food hard to digest and is a common problem in older adults, those with autoimmune conditions, and people who take proton pump inhibitors (PPIs). Betaine HCL is a natural supplement that is more effective than apple cider vinegar for those with low stomach acid.
  • Chamomile is used as a natural anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic — one study suggests it’s a helpful treatment for IBS-related issues [35].
  • Digestive enzymes can be helpful for some. For example, Lactase (sold as Lactaid) is a digestive enzyme that helps many with lactose intolerance. Beano, another digestive enzyme, can be very helpful to reduce gas after eating beans and legumes. There are also broad-spectrum digestive enzymes that can help with digesting a wider range of foods.

4. Lifestyle Changes

In addition to diet and supplements, you can relieve excess gas by making small changes to your daily habits. 

To start, don’t rush through your meals. The slower you eat, the less air you’ll swallow. You’ll potentially reap other health benefits when you slow down your eating, including weight loss and a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease [36, 37]. 

Taking a walk after eating will help ease abdominal cramping and bloating from excess gas. Research shows post-meal walks can speed up digestion and reduce indigestion, heartburn, and general discomfort [38, 39]. 

You can also take up yoga to prevent trapped intestinal gas. Yoga has been used to reduce symptoms associated with IBS and other gastrointestinal disorders [40, 41, 42, 43]. 

Address Gas Pain’s Underlying Cause

Excessive gas can lead to abdominal pain and embarrassing levels of belching and farting. Fortunately, natural remedies can help reduce cramping and bloating caused by too much gas. However, frequent bouts of excessive gas can be a sign of larger digestive issues like IBS and SIBO.

The staff at Austin Functional Medicine includes specialists in gastrointestinal health, nutrition, and health coaching who can help you get to the root of your gas pain, bloating, and other digestive issues. You’ll receive personalized treatment and care from Dr. Ruscio and his team, who understand no treatment is one-size-fits-all

Austin Functional Medicine is currently accepting new patients in-person and via telemedicine. Schedule an appointment today and get on your way towards a healthier gut.

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