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Saturday, January 28, 2006 - Page updated at 12:00 AM


Fun Notes: Super Sunday, it's a gas, gas, gas

Seattle Times assistant sports editor

Super Bowl parties are all fun and games. Until the pizza, the chips and dip, the beer and soda start to kick in, that is.

"That's when FoodFest becomes FartFest," says Bill Downs.

Downs is trying to save us from ourselves. He's an expert in diet and digestion, a nutritional biochemist who is serious about gastrointestinal disorders.

That's why he started the world's first fart blog ( Warning: When you load the site, you'll be greeted by a rather unpleasant sound, so you might not want to call this up if there are others near your workstation. (Or maybe you will, depending on your sense of humor.) Once you get past that, there's plenty of important information about digestive problems.

And that's all fine and dandy, but what we want to know is how to keep our Super Bowl party from turning into the bean-eating scene from "Blazing Saddles."

Seattle Times: What foods are going to cause the biggest problems at a Super Bowl party?

Bill Downs: Anything refined or processed. If it's white, it ain't right. And don't just toss down some broccoli and cauliflower and think that's going to make it OK. Those are huge gas producers. In fact, if you want to win a farting contest, I'd go with eggs, broccoli and beer.

ST: Thanks for the tip.

BD: Try to eat an apple. Start the day with some oatmeal. Eat something healthy. I'm not saying don't eat the hot dog, I know people will, but add some water, fiber and nutrients to it.

ST: What are the best foods to eat?

BD: Shop the perimeter of the grocery store; look for things that are organic, wholesome. Get whole grain bread rather than just whole wheat. And be sure to take some digestive enzymes and probiotics.

ST: Uh ...

BD: Look in the yellow pages for health-food stores; you can find them there.

ST: Let's talk about Super Bowl party etiquette. What do you do when you smell or hear something foul?

BD: You need to identify your audience. If you're with a bunch of rednecks, you'd probably jump up on the couch and yell something like, "Who fired that shot?" If you're with the Magna cum laude crowd, you'd just hold your breath and turn away.

ST: What if it was you?

BD: Blame it on someone else and get out of Dodge.

ST: So, back to our Super Bowl party ...

BD: Right. To me, it's just very logical. If you've been munching on garbage all day long, it's going to have a very foul effect. We're the most medicated society in the history of the world, but we still have the most chronic digestive problems. Instead of sending people off for medications to sedate the symptoms, we need to have a more intimate relationship with nature.

And lay off the eggs, broccoli and beer.

Copyright © 2006 The Seattle Times Company




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