It seems that pilots have been advised to let flatulence out "for safety reasons." Now a study conducted by a team of Danish and British gastroenterologists has published a paper covering the serious issues involved.
Of course farting is a normal product of digestion but apparently, according to this team of serious scientists, it is made worse by flying. Changes in the volume of intestinal gasses as cabin pressure alters may lead people to fart more often. Holding back can lead to stress, discomfort, pain, bloating, dyspepsia and other symptoms.
But letting go may also have consequences.
“If the pilot restrains a fart, all the drawbacks previously mentioned, including diminished concentration, may affect his abilities to control the airplane,” the researchers say.
“If he lets go of the fart his co-pilot may be affected by its odour, which again reduces safety on board the flight.”
Fortunately our esteemed team of experts warn against setting light to farts, despite the known effects of reducing the smell. I can picture this being included in future safety videos - " in the event that you fart, please do not use naked flames..."
They do go on to note that:
Women pong more than men (I wonder how they conducted the tests?)
Exercising the pelvic ring is essential to maintain the ability to fart silently. Now what counts as exercise?
So what to do? Hold it in and be uncomfortable or let rip and see the cabin crew avoid you and miss out on the champagne? Should there be a dedicated cabin for those who may be more flatulent than others like we see demands for kiddies only cabins? Decisions, decisions.
DocLightning, it's over to you for a second opinion.