Why burping wind through mouth is normal health reflex

Sometimes I like to share with my readers topics that concerns lifestyle because these are circumstances that commonly lead to unpredictable upsets. Some topics are rarely discussed even in the offices of health experts and yet can make a huge difference in quality of health and life. A few years ago, I had a client who reported to me with regular gastro-intestinal bloat problem that the patient said occurred every night and wanted to know whether he could take a laxative to clean out his lower gastro-intestinal contents. 
Dr Joseph Kamugisha
Dr Joseph Kamugisha

Sometimes I like to share with my readers topics that concerns lifestyle because these are circumstances that commonly lead to unpredictable upsets.

Some topics are rarely discussed even in the offices of health experts and yet can make a huge difference in quality of health and life.

A few years ago, I had a client who reported to me with regular gastro-intestinal bloat problem that the patient said occurred every night and wanted to know whether he could take a laxative to clean out his lower gastro-intestinal contents. 

He revealed that his regular meal was sweet potatoes during lunch time and takes a cup of fresh milk at night with bread. I advised him to change diet because I considered sweet potatoes and milk as possible causes of his indigestion or malabsorption to prompt gastro-intestinal bloats and subsequent burps. 

There are a variety of food materials or drinks that can cause gastro-intestinal distress. 

Sweet potatoes contain complex carbohydrate chains and milk contains lactulose, a complex sugar. Individuals with reduced physical activity tend to suffer mal-absorption or indigestion due to prolonged or difficult break down of the complex food materials. 

Other gas forming foods especially when eaten in large amounts include cabbage and beans.  

I advised him to eat lightly, for example take quantified juicy fruits and greens, sip on carbonated mineral water. I also told him to be sure to release any gas that stirred up at any time.

I also told him that it is not good to suppress the desire to burp as this can certainly worsen his condition.

He was advised to replace milk with a well-balanced mixture of orange juice and water, the following day; he reported to have burped clouds of gas. He felt well relaxed and slept well.

Normally, your body will release gas before it builds up to a point where it creates painful pressure. 

But if you suppress burping and passing of gas, or if your indigestion is severe enough to cause a super quick build-up of gas in your gastro-intestinal tract, then you can experience problems that range from general weakness to headaches.

Drinking carbonated mineral water can provide a much-needed stimulus to push pockets of gas out of the body system. The key is to allow anything that wants to leave the body successfully. 

Some people can be served delicious meals in a party and find themselves to have eaten much food than body requirements. Sometimes you can eat something allergic to your gastro-intestinal system to cause an upset.

Besides nutrition, excessive burping and bloating is common to individuals who swallow air either voluntarily or involuntarily. Air can enter the gastrointestinal tract through mouth breathing or talking or drinking while eating. 

Some gastro-intestinal conditions like the crohn’s disease may lead to increased malabsorption but usually there is persistent discomfort that brings suspicion for advanced investigations in such cases.

This is the reason why people with persistent abdominal bloats and burps need to consult a health expert to investigate the cause. The physician will take history, examine to assess whether evaluation for malabsorption is needed or not. If the cause is minor, usually anti-gas medications like the simethicone are prescribed.

 It is important to understand that suppression of burps or gas outlet can harm your body through various ways.

It can lead to endogenous toxins that can seep through the walls of your small intestine to enter blood stream with resultant cause of toxin accumulation at cellular level

Endogenous toxins are toxins that are formed within the digestive tract especially when you do not completely digest the foods you eat. 

Abundant bloats can stretch the walls of the digestive tract to cause pain. 

Dr Joseph Kamugisha is a resident oncologist at Jerusalem Hospital, Israel

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