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Don’t smell that gas – no, farts aren’t good for your health

Facts & Myths Health

Don’t smell that gas – no, farts aren’t good for your health


No matter what you are looking for, you may accidentally stumble across one of thousands of articles telling you just how beneficial farts are for your health. Some of them go as far as saying that farts may help cure or prevent cancer – no, really, it goes to that extent!

So, if you’ve been having late night contests with your beloved one to see who would smell the most farts and become the healthiest – some of you would probably be immortal right now -, then we’re sorry to break this to you, but it’s all a lie. It’s an actual study where the conclusion was so distorted, so taken out of context, that it may have started an entirely new worldwide fart-smelling trend. Now, it’s time to stop and smell the roses, not the flatulence gas.

These wild conclusions were based on a study from the University of Exeter that was excitingly titled ‘Rotten Egg Gas Holds Key To Healthcare Therapies’. Obviously, this lead many keyboard-happy bloggers to make up their own conclusions and deceive a lot of inattentive readers. What the study actually said was this, among other things:

“Although hydrogen sulfide is well known as a pungent, foul-smelling gas in rotten eggs and flatulence, it is naturally produced in the body and could in fact be a healthcare hero with significant implications for future therapies for a variety of diseases.”

Dr. Mark Wood of the Biosciences Department at the University, created a molecule called AP39 which would slowly deliver small amounts of hydrogen sulfide to the mitochondria, thus controlling inflammation and allowing cells to live; if the mitochondrial DNA becomes damaged, the cells die and are unable to “regulate survival and control inflammation”, as Professor Matt Whiteman of the University of Exeter Medical School said.

Obviously, you can’t get a healthy dose of hydrogen sulfide by smelling farts or any other external source, and nowhere is this ever stated in the study. Otherwise, can you just imagine the hospital rooms full of people being treated with the aid of flatulence-producing medical staff? What a sight that would be, right?

No, farts aren’t good for your health. Stop passing gas and saying that “it’s good for your health, honey”, as that is a really, really bad excuse.

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