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The latest viral walking workout is all about fiber and farting. Here's how you can try it out

Creator Mairlyn Smith says it can help reduce your chances of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Mairlyn Smith calls herself "the queen of fibre."

Her goal is to help people make small changes that will impact their long-term health, particularly when it comes incorporating healthy doses of fiber into their diets.

The 70-year-old author of seven cookbooks, who most recently published her book "Peace, Love & Fibre," is dedicated to working on her own health as well as giving advice to others in entertaining ways including TikTok videos.

Most recently, she's gone viral online for her love of #FartWalks — a name she coined to describe the walks she goes on with her husband about 60 minutes after dinner to release gas that built up during their meal.

"Why do we do this? Well, we eat a lot of fiber so we have gas," Smith says in a video. "And you fart when you walk so that's why I named it that."

"I've been trying to get people to eat fiber-rich diets for about 20 years," Smith tells TODAY.com. "I'm very excited that people sort of got on board."

On social media and in her cookbooks, Smith strives to give people simple and attainable tips that would improve their health and prevent long-term diseases.

“It’s the little healthy habits we practice every day that can have the biggest impact on our long-term health," she notes.

What is a #FartWalk?

Every day, after dinner, Smith goes on 20-minute walks at a moderate pace, which she calls #FartWalks.

In 2020, Smith began recording her post-dinner walks and posted the videos on social media. She and her husband had an important intention in mind when starting this habit.

"The main reason we did them is because we wanted to reduce our chances of developing Type 2 diabetes," she says. "Why? Well, because walking is helping maintain our blood sugars," Smith explains in a video. "And as you age, especially after 40, you have a bigger chance of developing Type 2 diabetes."

"The science is, when we sit down after dinner your gut doesn't work as well. You actually have to move it to get all that gas out," she explains. Smith has seen that going on these walks helps reduce bloating and acid reflux.

Engagement on her #FartWalk videos had been pretty steady until March 13 when she posted video of herself on a #FartWalk as part of a series she calls “Aging Wonderfully” and it took off.

The hashtag she has been posting for years suddenly earned millions of likes and views. She was “stunned” by the uptick in engagement.

"I can't keep up with all the comments," Smith said.

Her post has roughly, 9.5 million views, 7 thousand comments and 321 thousand likes.

"I think the part that is making my heart just glow is I've gotten so many DMs and so many people reaching out saying, 'thank you,' 'thank you for normalizing this' or 'I finally got my husband to go for a walk because he called it a fart walk.'"

Smith says she's proud to have made a difference with this trend.

"It makes me really happy that maybe I am making a difference in somebody's long-term health," says Smith.

Smith recommends making little movements during the day

At 70 years old, Smith says she goes on two walks per day, and she is glad to have "the luxury of being able to build walks into her day."

However, there was a time when she did not have much time to do this, but she'd developed little habits that kept her active.

"I would get off at the subway station farther away so that I could get that 20 minutes in before I got home. Those little, tiny things that you can do on an everyday basis to be moving more is great."

Even if you can't fit a 20-minute walk into your day, Smith recommends squeezing in a shorter burst. Instead of sitting at your desk for the entire day, she recommends getting up for a quick, five-minute walk every once in a while.

"One of my tips is that if you drink water, it makes you want to go to the bathroom. So, drink water so then you have to (walk) to the washroom."

In her experience, she has learned that forming minor habits that keep you active for at least a few minutes will have an effect on your health.

"I didn't just start looking after myself at 70. I started looking after myself when I was in my 30s because I...thought I want to be active and vibrant until the day I drop dead," Smith says. "Whatever your age is, it's never too early and it's never too late to get active."

Mairlyn Smith’s tips to keep a fiber-rich diet

In university, Smith had a professor who told her something that stuck with her: “You are what you eat.”

And throughout her career, Smith noticed a commonality between foods people said were healthy. “They all have different nutrients and properties but what is the one thing they all have in common?”

They're all rich in fiber.

Smith realized that the healthy foods, fruits, vegetables, nuts and whole grains she enjoyed, were rich in fiber. As a cookbook author, Smith thought, “that’s what I need to encourage people to be eating.”

And when writing her cookbooks, she did just that and injected her signature humor into them. “I learned that people learn things better when they’re laughing," says Smith.

When recommending people eat more fiber, Smith prefers to give simple suggestions that make a big difference. When she sets goals for people, she wants them to be easily doable.

So, when she recommends her followers and readers regularly eat apples to reduce their chances of cardiovascular disease and up their antioxidants, she reminds them of the common saying: "An apple a day keeps the doctor away."

And when she wants them to eat more greens, she started saying leafy greens make you sexy. "Now, they won’t," says Smith. "But I just thought it would be an interesting thing to throw out there.”