There are as few acts as inherently part of the human condition, yet simultaneously reviled, as farting. A loud burst of methane erupting from your nether-regions accompanied by an unpleasant smell is the kind of thing that people love to both laugh about and wince at, but it turns out there's actually quite a few things we all tend to misunderstand about them.
There are foods that make them smell worse
As most people suspect, eggs and red meat, as well as other food containing larger amounts of sulfur, can indeed cause your farts to stink even moreso than usual.
Most people fart a daily average
Apparently the average, healthy human passes gas around 14 times a day!
Some people have a legitimate fear of them
Flatulaphobia is the fear of farting; either the sound, smell, or awareness of farting can cause legitimate fear in someone experiencing this condition.
Sometimes gas has nothing to do with digestion
A lot of times it can actually come from swallowing a lot of air, especially if you're nervous or anxious.
Beans don't actually make you fart more.
A 2011 study found that most people do not fart more if they eat more beans. The only time it happened was with people who normally don't eat beans at all.
These next few fart facts are a real gas...
People have tried to invent things to change their smell
A French man named Christian Poincheval sells fart pills that supposedly make your gas smell like chocolate, roses, or ginger. They retail for about $21 each.
There is such a thing as "defensive flatulence"
A psychoanalyst wrote about a patient he treated in 1996, a young boy named Peter who had been neglected by his parents. According to his research,
“When feeling endangered, Peter had developed a defensive olfactive container using his bodily smell and farts to envelop himself in a protective cloud of familiarity against the dread of falling apart, and to hold his personality together."
Women fart just as much as men
Several studies have been conducted that have determined that there is no difference between the sexes in terms of the frequency of passing gas.
Fart jokes have been around for literally thousands of years
The world's oldest recorded joke comes from a Sumerian text dating back to around 1900 B.C.E. It is, of course, a fart joke.
There's actually no risk to holding in your farts
It CAN cause uncomfortable cramps and mild pain, but otherwise there's no risk to not letting one rip.
Farts can ruin your career
According to the New York Post, in 2014, an opera singer sued her hospital over a botched medical procedure that left her with excessive flatulence. The lawsuit alleged that “As a result of her incontinence and excessive flatulence,” she was unable to continue working.
Or they can give you one!
Mr. Methane is a performance artist and the world's only flatulist; a professional farter. He farts well-known pieces of music. Seriously.
Which of these fart-facts caught you with your pants down?