A would-be mother undergoes several physical, mental, and emotional changes throughout her gestation period. Along with her enlarging uterus and swelling breasts, she experiences several other changes like mild heartburns and frequent flatulence. According to medical research, a pregnant woman farts twice the times a normal adult farts in a day.
Why Pregnancy Increases Flatulence?
There are multiple reasons why a pregnant woman releases gas frequently. They are:
- During pregnancy, progesterone levels are high. Along with helping in improving the female reproductive health, progesterone relaxes the intestinal muscles in the body. Since muscles move slowly, the process of digestion slows down causing the intestine to be filled with gas. This will cause bloating in the abdominal cavity which can be relieved only by burping or farting.
- As one becomes heavily pregnant, the stretched uterus exerts pressure on the abdominal cavity. This also slows down digestion and leads to gaseous buildup.
- Prenatal vitamins and iron tablets cause constipation in some women. This could lead to gas buildup in the large intestine and hence, results in more flatulence.
How to Manage Excessive Flatulence During Pregnancy?
Excessive flatulence cannot be completely avoided. But they can be managed using the following ways:
- Drinking enough fluids and more water helps to reduce the effects of constipation that indirectly reduces the gas buildup in the intestines. Also, if one is suffering from irritable bowel syndrome, drinking plenty of water will hydrate the body.
- Avoiding carbonated drinks and fried foods will prevent the problem of excessive flatulence during pregnancy.
- Avoiding fruit juices that contain gas bloating-promoting sugars. Cranberry, orange, grapes, and pineapple, etc. contain such sugars and hence, such juices must be avoided during pregnancy.
- Physical activities like walking and mild exercises should be a part of a pregnant woman’s daily routine. This will speed up digestion and prevent constipation.
- Eating small frequent meals that will make the digestion process easy. Also, one should bite and chew their food so that it reduces gas. When food is not digested properly and is pushed to the large intestine, the bacteria living there acts on the food and releases gas. Hence, by chewing food, complete digestion takes place, thereby, reducing gas buildup.
- Reducing the intake of root vegetables, peas, beans, cabbage, etc. as they release gas during digestion and assimilation can improve digestion. Instead of cutting these healthy food items from the diet, one can eat pepper, ginger, etc. along with these vegetables to reduce gas.
- Pregnant women can opt to wear loose-fitting clothes as it will not hug their abdomen, hence, helps in reducing excessive gas.
Safety of the Baby
Increased flatulence does not affect the baby growing in the womb. However, if the pregnant mothers avoid eating nutrient-rich food by eliminating greens or iron supplement as they are embarrassed to fart in public, they will cause nutrition deficiency for the baby in the womb. Hence, pregnant women should not bother about increased flatulence and eat food that supplies them with the right amount of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that will help the baby grow strong and healthy.