A still from the film Le Petomane (1983), based on the story of Joseph Pujol, the pioneer of fart entertainment. He used his flatulence to blow out candles, among other things. Photo: Alamy

Why we pass gas, what causes the dreaded sound, and the reason women have smellier flatulence than men

  • Benjamin Franklin wrote an essay about the bodily function, while for the Yanomami tribe in the Amazon rainforest it is a form of greeting
  • It is a natural part of daily life. But why do we do it? Here are all the facts
Topic |   Health and wellness

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A still from the film Le Petomane (1983), based on the story of Joseph Pujol, the pioneer of fart entertainment. He used his flatulence to blow out candles, among other things. Photo: Alamy
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Anthea Rowan

Anthea Rowan

Anthea Rowan has written for papers and magazines on almost every continent and on a huge variety of subjects, from travel in Africa to mental illness in the States to education in Europe. Her work has appeared in The Times in London, the Washington Post in America and regularly at the South China Morning Post.