Flatulence can be a tricky subject. In addition to the embarrassing sounds it can make, escaping gas can create unfortunate odors. No wonder people are eager to find solutions to this problem. One reader wondered if taking Beano can counteract gas that results from eating beans.
Does Beano Work to Counteract Gas?
Q. What about taking Beano to counter the effect of gassing when you eat beans or other vegetables? Does it work?
A. Beano contains the food enzyme alpha-galactosidase. It helps break down the complex sugars called oligosaccharides before bacteria can digest them and produce gas. One placebo-controlled trial in children confirmed that this product can be helpful against flatulence (BMC Gastroenterology, Sept. 24, 2013). Previously, a small study indicated that it is also effective to counteract gas in adults (Digestive Diseases and Sciences, Jan. 2007).
The instructions on the bottle suggest taking it at the start of a meal containing beans, broccoli, onions or other vegetables that may result in smelly gas. We find this works quite well.
Cooking Beans to Counteract Gas:
You may also want to learn how to minimize gas with your cooking technique. We discuss this in the following post.
There are other approaches to this problem as well. One reader shared a pharmaceutical solution:
Devrom for Postsurgical Flatulence:
Q. I had colon surgery last year and as a result I suffered from embarrassing smelly flatulence. Fortunately, I found a product called Devrom (www.devrom.com). It has changed my life!
A. Stinky gas can be extremely embarrassing. Devrom contains bismuth subgallate. A similar compound, bismuth subsalicylate (Pepto-Bismol), is effective against odorous flatulence (Current Treatment Options in Gastroenterology, Aug. 2001).
It is possible to overdose on bismuth, so don’t get carried away. Too much bismuth could harm the nervous system or kidneys. Pepto-Bismol can interact with several medications.
Remedies and Sensible Solutions for Gas:
You may also wish to listen to Dr. Tieraona Low Dog, an expert on using herbs for common complaints, discuss how to counteract gas.