Top 10 Reasons Why Eating Hurts Your Stomach
Eating is a simple activity for most people, but it can be a difficult and painful experience for those who suffer from gallstones. That is because the act of eating can cause pain in the stomach due to the presence of gallstones. In this article, we will explore why eating hurts my stomach. We will also provide tips on how to make eating less painful. If you are experiencing pain after eating, you must consult a doctor to rule out any underlying medical conditions.
First Up: Is It Actually Your Stomach That Hurts
Before we get into the most common causes of a crampy middle after eating, lets clear up something many of us have been unknowingly getting wrong since we were kids. When you say your stomach hurts, chances are youre talking about the part of your torso between your chest and your hips. This part of your body is technically your abdomen. Your stomach starts a bit under your chest on your left side and extends down into the middle of your torso.
Its no surprise, then, that figuring out exactly what hurts in this general area can be tricky. There are organs that overlap, Nitin Ahuja, M.D., M.S., assistant professor of clinical medicine in the gastroenterology department in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, tells SELF. The small intestine occupies a lot of space, and the colon sort of drapes around the entire abdomen and overlaps of the stomach as well.
Also, depending on what is going on, the nerves in the abdomen may not be as good at localizing pain, Dr. Ahuja says, so it might be hard to tell where the pain is coming from. Keep all of this in mind as you try to figure out what might be causing your post-eating cramps. Now, for the next bit of background information you need to know, since high school biology was a long time ago for some of us
If Your Abdominal Cramps Are Making Life Miserable Try To Talk To A Doctor
Treatments for the above issues can vary wildly. For instance, if you think the issue is that you have a hard time processing beans, which then leads to painful gas, over-the-counter medications like simethicone may help with the distension that causes your pain, Dr. Krishnareddy explains.
However, if youre experiencing cramps that are pretty severe, along with other symptoms that make you think you might have a chronic issue like IBS or IBD, its really important to try to consult with a doctorparticularly because taking over-the-counter medications wont treat the real issue at hand.
These medications can decrease the symptoms just enough that the person doesnt go to their doctor to get evaluated, Dr. Krishnareddy says. But its not actually the underlying problem.
Ultimately, if getting abdominal cramps after eating is affecting your life, its time to consult the professionals. If youre having symptoms that are occurring frequently enough to interfere with your ability to conduct your daily activities, you need to see a doctor, Dr. Chey confirms. This is especially true, he says, if youre having serious symptoms like vomiting , seeing blood in your stool , or inexplicably losing weight.
Trust your gut when it tells you somethings wrong. At the very least, your doctor should be able to ask you some questions that get you closer to figuring out whats going on.
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What Is Stomach Pain
The stomach is the organ responsible for most of your foods digestion. Breaking down food swallowed through your esophagus and sending the resulting mixture onto the small intestine is the stomachs primary function.
Most everyone has had a stomach ache after eating at some time or another. The causes are usually quite benign, ranging from overindulging to simply eating something that didnt agree with you. However, frequent stomach pain after eating is a sign of a deeper problem and shouldnt be ignored.
Stomach aches and pains can happen at almost any point during this process. While some of this is usually normal, see a doctor right away if youre experiencing:
- Unintentional weight loss
When To See A Doctor
Call your doctor if your stomach discomfort lasts more than a few days or if home remedies and diet control fail to offer relief.
Seek immediate medical help if you experience other severe symptoms along with burning pain in the stomach, such as:
- Black, bloody, or tarry stools
- Severe abdominal pain
- Yellowing of the eyes or skin
- Pain that interferes with sleep
The doctor will perform a physical exam or even an abdominal x-ray if needed and ask you about the symptoms you have been experiencing. In some cases, a breath or stool test is typically used to diagnose the presence of H. pylori infection.
In some cases, doctors recommend endoscopy. It is a non-invasive procedure to look inside your stomach, with the help of a tube that has a tiny camera attached to it, to find the causes behind the burning in your stomach.
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What Does Abdominal Pain Location Tell You
Location is an important clue to your abdominal pain, though its not the only factor. It may indicate which organs are involved. For example, pain in the upper right quadrant may indicate a problem with your liver or gallbladder.
However, your healthcare provider will also want to know more about what your pain feels like, how often you feel it, and how severe it is. This will give them additional clues about what kind of condition you may have.
Reasons Red Meat Might Cause Stomach Pain And What To Do About It
Do you get stomach pain after eating red meat? Tucking into this food group â which includes beef from cows as well as lamb, pork and processed options like sausage, pepperoni and bacon â may cause belly cramps, nausea, diarrhea and vomiting for some people.
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But getting to the bottom of this issue can be tricky, as there are several possible reasons for the discomfort. For example, you may have eaten something else along with that burger that’s setting your stomach aflame, such as alcohol, dairy or fried foods. And there are literally dozens of reasons out there for a case of abdominal pain, per the Mayo Clinic.
Learn more about the connection between stomach pain after eating red meat, including the likely culprits behind it and some stress-free ways to ease â and maybe even avoid â the pain.
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Why Does My Stomach Hurt After Eating
Stomach pain is a common and usually short-lived, benign symptom. Almost everyone has experienced a bout of stomach pain after eating, often as a result of dietary indiscretions. But if you frequently have stomach pain after eating, or if pain is severe, see your medical practitioner recurring stomach pain after eating can coincide with potentially serious health issues.
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What Are The 3 Most Common Food Intolerances
The three most common food intolerances are lactose, a sugar found in milk, casein, a protein found in milk, and gluten, a protein found in grains. Lactose intolerance is caused by an enzyme called lactase, which breaks down milk sugar into lactic acid.
Casein intolerance occurs when the body doesnt break down the protein that makes up milk. Gluten intolerance can occur when a persons immune system mistakenly identifies gluten as a foreign substance and attacks it, leading to inflammation and damage to the lining of the small intestine.
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Dont Eat Grains With Fruit
This is a hard one for most people, since we all are so used to eating our cereals with fruit and pancakes with fruit toppings. On another note, my health plan nutritionist and Dr. Soni both agree that any packaged cereal is dead food since it is processed and loaded with sugar and probably is 6 months to a year old before we consume it. They both recommended making fresh oatmeal or other grains like bulgur wheat, millet, barley. The oatmeal should not be the instant kind but the one that takes 5 to 10 minutes to cook. Once we become aware and sensitive to how our body responds to the food we eat, you will be able to feel the effects of eating the right combination. So, try eating oatmeal with fruit one day and without fruit another day and feel the difference.
What Are The Treatments For Stomach Cramps
- Mild abdominal cramps can be treated with home remedies or OTC medicine. Home remedies like apple cider vinegar, ginger, and chamomile tea, in particular, are known to relieve mild pains and bloating in the abdomen.
- Stomach cramps that occur as a result of allergies and intolerances can be avoided by dietary changes. After tests and diagnosis, your doctor will prescribe you a customised diet, limiting the foods that trigger the allergy.
- Dietary changes are also effective to control overeating. In cases where it is uncontrollable, it is recommended to consult a dietician or a therapist to identify the underlying cause for overeating.
- If you have IBS, your doctor may prescribe you special medication like fibre supplements, laxatives, or antidiarrheal medication. Pain-relieving medication will be prescribed for IBS patients experiencing severe pains, cramps, and bloating.
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Ulcers Of The Peptic Stomach
These are open sores on the stomach lining or the upper portion of the small intestine. Bacteria is the most prevalent cause, although long-term use of aspirin, ibuprofen, and other medications can also contribute. People who smoke or drink are more likely to get ulcers. They can be treated with proper medicines.
You Have Crohn’s Disease
There is no known cause for Crohn’s disease, but it is typically related to your diet and genetics, says Dr. Jacobs. While it’s a chronic condition that requires ongoing monitoring and management, your doctor may recommend medication, diet changes, and surgery to curb symptoms and provide long-term relief.
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Why Does My Stomach Hurt When I Eat Fast Food: 10 Possible Reasons
Fast food mystery solved. Here are some possible reasons why does my stomach hurt when I eat fast food.
Savoring a delicious fast food meal is an exciting experience. The convenience of it all, the speed of service, and the smells make for a pleasant dining experience. But from time to time, most people have experienced unwanted side effects from eating fast food.
Maybe youve had stomach pains or a long-lasting bad taste in your mouth. Increased gas or bloating is just a part of the collection for some. Its important to note that these effects could be due to many reasons, and no one really knows what is causing them.
But you can healthfully enjoy fast food without any guilt, learn to live with the unpleasant side effects and enjoy fast food while you still can.
You Might Have A Food Intolerance
If you find that your cramps keep happening after you eat certain things, you might have an intolerance to a specific food substance. Common culprits of intolerances are foods that are designated as fermentable oligo-, di-, and monosaccharides and polyols , which is a fancy designation for poorly-digested carbohydrates, Dr. Ahuja says. Examples include fruits like apples and pears, veggies like cauliflower and lentils, and dairy products. In fact, trouble processing lactose is the most common type of food intolerance, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
In addition to getting abdominal pain when you eat that particular food, you might also deal with symptoms like nausea, bloating, gas, vomiting, heartburn, diarrhea, and more, the Cleveland Clinic says. And keep in mind that different people can be intolerant to the same food to different extents. For example, Dr. Krishnareddy explains, someone who is mildly lactose intolerant may be able to digest cheese and yogurt but not a milky latte, whereas someone with a severe intolerance may not be able to digest any form of dairy very well.
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Causes For Stomach Pain After Eating
1. Food Allergy or Intolerance. Many people experience food allergies and intolerances that result in persistent gastrointestinal symptoms, such as gas, bloating, cramping, and diarrhea. Common allergens include eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, shellfish, milk, soy, wheat, and more. If symptoms are minor, these conditions can go undiagnosed for years!
2. IBS. Irritable Bowel Syndrome is a common disorder that affects the large intestine . IBS can cause bloating, abdominal cramping, diarrhea, constipation, gas, and other negative gastrointestinal symptoms. IBS is chronic and requires managing symptoms, often through dietary changes.
3. Gastritis. Gastritis is a broad term for inflammation/swelling of the stomach lining. It can be caused by infection, overuse of pain medications , injuries, certain foods, and overuse of alcohol. Gastritis can result in abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and weakness.
4. Celiac Disease. Celiac Disease is a chronic immune disease that is characterized by an inability to eat gluten. Eating foods with gluten damages the small intestine and immune system of people with Celiac. Symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss, bloating, and mood changes. It is often genetic and can be diagnosed with a blood test.
Remedies For Stomach Pain After Eating Beef
Belly discomfort is no picnic, of course, but if you’re looking for a remedy for stomach pain after eating beef, the fix is about the same as for other cases of mild GI distress. Here’s a look:
- âSip clear liquids:â Drinking clear liquids, like tea or broth, can help, per the Cleveland Clinic.
- âNix solid foods:â Skip solid food for the first few hours after symptoms appear and avoid high-fat foods or ones that are fried or greasy, as these may cause GI discomfort, per Harvard Health Publishing.
- âTry mint:â “If your symptoms aren’t severe, you could try Pepogest or another mint product before eating,” suggests Dr. Wolf.
- âGet some rest:â The best remedy is some good ol’ down time. The reason? Sickness, dehydration, stomach pain and more can drain your body of energy,
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You Have Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
Also known as GERD, this condition happens when stomach acid irritates the lining of your esophagus, creating heartburn and stomach pain in the process, Dr. Farhadi says.
Youre more likely to suffer from GERD if you tend to overeat or love spicy foodsthat allows acid to flow up into your esophagus, which can be pretty painful, says Rudolph Bedford, MD, a gastroenterologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica, California.
If you think youre struggling with GERD, try cutting back on spicy foods, caffeine, and alcohol, and take over-the-counter antacids to help with symptoms. If that still doesnt do the trick, call your doctor.
When Should I Be Concerned About Stomach Pain
One biggie to flag is that you shouldnt be able to feel pain in your internal organs if you do suspect thats the case, then head to your doctor, STAT. Plus, if you are dealing with recurring pain over multiple weeks and it affecting your day-to-day life, then do head to see your GP for tests.
Other than that, obviously, stomach pain after eating can be as a result of easily-fixable issues, as well as medical reasons.
Lets break them down.
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Upper Abdominal Pain Between The Ribcage
If you develop an aching or stabbing pain or pressure in the upper abdominal area just under the ribs, this may indicate a heart-related problem. Physicians say this pain is often accompanied by shortness of breath and is concerning if the pain persists. People often assume this type of pain is indigestion, and while that may be the case, anyone with risk factors such as diabetes or hypertension should see a doctor as soon as possible.
If you do struggle with acid reflux, it may be time to talk to a gastroenterologist. They can help you manage your symptoms through medications, lifestyle changes and diet.
What Are Abdominal Muscle Spasms
In more serious cases, uncontrolled and sometimes painful muscle movements, or spasms in the stomach are known by the NHS as dystonia.
Dystonia symptoms include10:
- Uncontrollable muscle cramps and spasms
- Parts of your body twisting into unusual positions such as your neck twisting or your feet turning inwards
- Shaking or tremors
- Uncontrolled blinking
Dystonia is not common, however, in rare cases it can lifelong condition that affects people in different ways. You can get help and advice about dystonia from your GP or the UKs Dystonia Society.
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Spicy And Acidic Meals
Fruit juices, processed cheese, and tomatoes are acidic meals that can irritate the stomach.
Finding alternatives, such as substituting water or tea for fruit drinks, may assist to alleviate stomach aches.
Chili peppers are frequently used to add heat to spicy foods. Capsaicin, a substance that generates the hot or burning feeling, is present in them. Capsaicin can cause irritation in sensitive areas of the body, such as the stomach.