According to Professor Clare Collins, a nutrition and dietetics expert at the University of Newcastle, holding in built-up gas may cause abdominal distension, “with some gas reabsorbed into the circulation and exhaled in your breath”.

In a text for The Conversation, she also warned that holding it in is actually futile: “Holding on too long means the build-up of intestinal gas will eventually escape via an uncontrollable fart.” You could also end up with a condition called diverticulitis, which is when small pouches develop in the gut lining and become inflamed, but she did point out that more research into this was needed.

Next time you feel the urge to fart in a full elevator just let it rip, however socially unacceptable it is. You don´t want small inflamed pouches in your gut lining, do you? What you definitely don`t want is farts coming out of your mouth. That would destroy your social life. In fact, I feel that this is a very serious issue that needs be addressed so I am starting a social awareness campaign in order to remove the stigma farting has. #fartsaregood #mouthfartsarebad

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