Follow your nose to this link!Are you a DIABETIC? Click HERE to see our GASSY DIABETICS SURVEY RESULTS.

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Don't Blinq or You'll Miss My Inquirer Appearance

I explained to the Inquirer's lead blogger why Super Bowl parties stink!

Blinq: Roughing The Passer

Monday, January 30, 2006

Help for Party Poopers

The Slashdot of Food

You might have heard of Slashdot, the influential tech blog. But did you know there's also a Slashfood? Now you do. Here's my Slashfood debut.

Super Bowl Snacks: watch out for fart-inducers - Slashfood

Saturday, January 28, 2006

I Had a Gas in Seattle

I chatted with Bill Reader, the assistant sports editor at the Seattle Times, about the upcoming fart fest popularly known as the Super Bowl.

The Seattle Times: Seahawks: Fun Notes: Super Sunday, it's a gas, gas, gas

Monday, January 23, 2006

The Obesity Pill: Fat Chance

Today the Food and Drug Administration is expected to decide if the generic prescription drug orlistat, which reduces the bodies ability to absorb fat, is appropriate for over-the-counter (OTC) distribution.

If the FDA approves orlistat for OTC sale, the public will have yet another way to medicate themselves to achieve a result (weight loss) that’s entirely possible to attain safely, without medication.

Worse, while orlistat can cut the body’s fat absorption by about a third, it has some extremely unpleasant side effects—namely (you guessed it!) FLATULENCE; loose, oily bowels; involuntary leakage; and a frequent, urgent need for a bowel movement.

What’s the lesser evil: a few extra pounds that you could work off with relative ease (provided you have the willpower), or serious gastrointestinal insult brought on by an OTC medication that’s allegedly improving your health?

One health expert noted that patients who followed the lowest-fat diets while using the drug were most successful, probably because a healthier regimen is gentler on the GI tract, and reduced the uncomfortable side effects.

Sound familiar? It should, if you’re a regular reader of the Trafon blog. Here’s another of my core concepts, which I urge readers to remember: OTC medications only sedate symptoms; they don’t cure a thing.

Want to lose weight? Here’s the only formula that’s proven to work every time: EAT MUCH HEALTHIER. EXERCISE MORE.

Fix your body by consuming wholesome (preferably organic) foods, such as vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Keep your diet low in fat. Ramp up the exercise (even a mere 30 minutes of walking a day will do).

This is a sound, proven, painless, and most of all, safe prescription for shedding extra pounds. Contrast that to orlistat, which I fear is merely a prescription for shedding methane, or worse.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Lights! Camera! Snickers!

Being under the heat of the TV lights was hard enough without having to talk about flatulence. Here's my recent appearance on Comcast Newsmakers. I think it's pretty clear that Jen Boyett is doing all she can not to crack up while asking me about farts and farting. Me, I was cool, calm, and collected, as always.


Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Yo Gassy! Try Yoga!

Here’s a wonderful way to pass up the pills and take a holistic approach to gastrointestinal delight: therapeutic yoga.

With smaller classes, gentler poses, and a slower pace than traditional yoga, therapeutic yoga targets people with chronic illnesses ranging from AIDS to osteoporosis to Crohn’s disease.

While not a medical cure or treatment, yoga provides stress relief, mild exercise, and an opportunity for meditation (not medication) in an emotionally supportive environment.

People who practice yoga are also better able to tolerate their symptoms. Consider the case of Teresa Kennedy, a former TV executive who has Crohn’s disease (a chronic disorder that inflames the digestive or GI tract; usually the small intestine or colon).

After practicing yoga, Kennedy found she no longer gets Crohn’s symptoms. That led her to open her own yoga studio in an effort to share her discovery, and bring relief to others.

While I don’t know Teresa Kennedy personally, her story appeals to me, because it appears we have the same mission: to help people with chronic conditions alleviate those conditions through natural means.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not one of those anti-medical-establishment whackos. But I don’t believe Americans should use over-the-counter medications to treat conditions that can be successfully addressed using natural means.

And when it comes to the GI tract, smart eating; regular, moderate exercise; and even yoga can be effective holistic solutions to problems that otherwise require polluting the body with unnatural non-prescription chemicals.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Planting A Big One

“Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow?”

With lots of farting, apparently. It turns out that green plants fart. A lot.

That according to research conducted at the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, in Heidelberg, Germany. Scientists were shocked to discover that plants worldwide dispense up to 236 million tons of methane into the atmosphere every year.

For generations, scientists thought that trees and plants—flora in general—were good for the environment, because they consume harmful carbon dioxide (CO2), and emit life-giving oxygen (O2).

But now it’s clear that plants produce methane, and put the “green” into greenhouse gases. Indeed, the Planck Institute’s research rattles recent international agreements that allow countries to offset greenhouse gas emissions by planting trees as credits.

Now those calculations must be completely rethought to factor in plant methane emissions. This shows how that even the most widely accepted, long-held principles can be overturned overnight.

In my world, where I spend a lot of time thinking about how I can help people who suffer with uncontrollable gas, this line of thinking leads me back to one of my core principles: Americans are the most over-medicated population, yet also the most chronically diseased.

Conventional thinking: Plants are good for the environment. New thinking: Plants are increasing greenhouse gasses, ands contributing to global warming. Conventional thinking: take medications for stomach upset, gas, bloating, heartburn, the runs, etc.

My thinking: Eat the right amounts of the right foods, and you won’t overtax your body or otherwise insult your gastrointestinal system—which leads to cramping, discomfort, and gas.

Time will prove me right.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Making a Stink in the New York Post

The New York Post gave me some stink, er, ink today. Check it out by clicking here.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A Fart’s Best Friend

When your best friend won’t stop farting, take him straight to a vet. As many pet owners know, uncontrollable gas isn’t strictly a human issue. It affects cats and dogs, too.

Luckily for stinky pets and embarrassed owners everywhere, veterinary news correspondent Dr. Marty Becker addresses some causes and solutions to pet flatulence.

Take a look at some of Dr. Becker’s recommendations, and bear in mind that they’ll work just as well for you as they will for Fido or Felix.

Problem: Aerophagia (swallowing air).
Solution: Feed your pet several small meals a day. Discourage rapid eating. Mix moist and dry foods.

Problem: Noxious (smelly) gas production.
Solution: Change your pet’s dietary protein sources. Eliminate vitamin, mineral, or fat supplements. Avoid onions, nuts, and cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cabbage, etc.).

Cause: Intestinal (noisy) gas production.
Solution: Feed your pet highly digestible foods, or switch to foods with rice as the predominant carbohydrate source. Also, avoid foods containing legumes, lactose, fresh fruits, or dried fruits.

For dogs, Dr. Becker also suggests increasing their activity by walking them outdoors within 30 minutes after eating, to encourage defecation, and to eliminate intestinal gas.

Great advice for pets and the people that love them. And kudos to Dr. Becker for not recommending pet medications. Be it pet or person, medication is not the answer when it comes to reducing or eliminating chronic gassiness.

The secret is diet monitoring and modification, and carefully timed mild exercise (walking). Now that’s a solution we all can live with.

Friday, January 06, 2006

Q&A with me in the Morning Call

Had a great chat with Jessica Berthold at the Morning Call about digestive maladies. You can read it by clicking here.


I enjoyed a warm reception in Iowa this week at radio station KOKX 1310 AM, where I appeared on “Just for the Health of It” (get it?), hosted by Tammy Sollenberger. Click here to give it listen!

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Flatulence in Florida

Florida Today let the sun shine in on flatulence, in an extensive article that features ... me! I just received a PDF of it, and have posted it to my server. Click here to read it.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Pentagon Considered "Fart Bombs"

Reporters who acquired Pentagon documents under the Freedom of Information Act discoveredU.S. Defense Department has been considering development of a “fart bomb” (for want of a better term) since 1945.

The Defense Dept. researchers only recently discarded the idea, concluding the concept for such a device was flawed because “people in many areas of the world do not find fecal odor offensive, since they smell it on a regular basis”.

Tell me about it! This is what I have been saying for years: that uncontrollable gas is a problem of global proportions. The difference, of course, is that here is the good ol’ U.S.A., we do find fecal odor offensive.

Assuming enemy troops do, like us, find fecal odor offensive, perhaps a better and more cost-effective approach would be for Defense Dept. researchers to visit this blog, and compile a list of the top foods guaranteed to cause gastrointestinal fireworks. Then they could have the Air Force air drop them over enemy troops, and in a few hours, BANG!