London: Though most of us may find it quite embarrassing in case we were caught breaking wind, a new study has in fact suggested flatulence could help patients with high blood pressure.
Scientists at Johns Hopkins University, in Baltimore, Maryland, US, have found that hydrogen sulphide in flatus - informally known as a fart - is also produced by an enzyme in blood vessels where it relaxes them and lowers blood pressure, The Sun reported.
Hydrogen sulphide -- a toxic gas generated by bacteria living in the human gut -- has been shown to control blood pressure in mice. Those with higher levels of the gas had lower blood pressure than rodents with less.
Researchers at a Chinese university in Nanjing are trying to work out whether this could be used to create a treatment for people suffering from high blood pressure.
Yao Yuyu from the university's Zhongda Hospital said: "Despite the treatment's potential, using gas to treat high blood pressure has yet to be tested on humans.
"The effective dosage could prove difficult to establish due to the difference in size between humans and mice."