Stomach Pain After Eating

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Published: March 17, 2015
Last reviewed: February 14, 2017

Stomach Pain After Eating

This article describes health conditions that can cause stomach ache, nausea or vomiting after eating, triggering foods, pain locations and associated symptoms.

Common causes of pain after eating include abdominal bloating, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), food intolerances, such as lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption and celiac disease, and food allergies. Food poisoning with bacteria and parasites is also quite a common cause of abdominal pain and diarrhea.

If you want to prevent stomach pain after eating, you may try to avoid certain foods or find out if you have any stomach or bowel disease and treat it.

A. UPPER ABDOMEN
Stomach disorders
Gallstones
Acute pancreatitis
B. LOWER ABDOMEN
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
Food poisoning
Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
Diverticles
Ileus
Mechanical bowel obstruction
C. FOODS THAT MAY TRIGGER STOMACH PAIN
D. CHILDREN and PAIN AFTER EATING


A. UPPER ABDOMINAL PAIN

Upper abdominal pain is located below the rib cage.

Stomach Disorders

Acute Gastritis

Gastritis is an inflammation of the stomach lining.

  • Causes: heavy alcohol drinking, severe stress, drugs (aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, steroids), infection by the Helicobacter pylori bacteria
  • Symptoms: discomfort (dyspepsia), fullness or burning pain in the upper middle abdomen, which can worsen or improve with eating; sometimes: nausea, vomiting, excessive belching
  • Reference: (1)

Gastric Ulcer

  • Causes: the same as for acute gastritis (see above)
  • Symptoms: burning, gnawing pain below the sternum, which can worsen or improve with eating and often occurs at night; pain can be relieved by antacids
  • NOTE: Duodenal ulcer pain is usually worse on empty stomach and relieved by eating.
  • Reference: (2,3)

Hiatal Hernia and Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)

Hiatal hernia is protruding of the upper part of the stomach through the opening in the diaphragm; it is sometimes associated with backward flow (reflux) of the stomach acid into the esophagus.

  • Symptoms: burning pain behind and below the breastbone (heartburn), in the throat and in the upper back and indigestion, worse soon after eating (especially after large meals) or lying down; the pain can last for up to 2 hours and can be relieved by standing upright or taking antacids; other symptoms: excessive burping, nausea, feeling of a lump in the throat, hoarseness, dry cough, sour or metallic taste in mouth, food regurgitation, bad breath.
  • Triggering foods: chocolate, peppermint, fatty or fried foods, citrus fruits, tomatoes, vinegar, garlic, onions, spicy foods, coffee, alcoholic and carbonated beverages. Other triggers: bending over, lifting, acidic drugs and supplements (aspirin, ibuprofen, vitamin C)
  • Risk factors: pregnancy, obesity, smoking
  • References: (5,26)

Bile Reflux

Bile reflux refers to backward flow of bile from the duodenum into the stomach and, eventually, further up into the esophagus, throat and mouth.

  • Causes: gastric ulcers, stomach surgery, gastric bypass surgery for weight loss, or gallbladder removal
  • Symptoms: upper middle abdominal (epigastric) pain and burning pain in the middle of the chest (heartburn) worse after large meals, sour or bitter taste in mouth, nausea or vomiting greenish-yellow fluid; pain can be relieved by antacids
  • Reference: (25)

Functional Dyspepsia

Functional dyspepsia refers to indigestion without a known cause.

  • Symptoms: upper abdominal pain, excessive belching, early satiety, nausea or vomiting after meals, but sometimes also not related to meals; antacids, sometimes, relieve the symptoms
  • Triggering foods may be the same as in GERD (see above);
  • Reference: (27)

Staph Food Poisoning

  • Cause: intoxication by the Staphylococcus aureus bacterial toxins after eating uncooked foods kept at room temperature (sandwiches, meat cuts, salads, dairy)
  • Symptoms: stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting and, sometimes, diarrhea, 30 minutes to 6 hours after ingesting contaminated food; symptoms resolve in few days
  • Reference: (4)

Stomach Cancer

  • Symptoms: upper middle abdominal pain and feeling of fullness after eating small amount of food, nausea, unintentional weight loss, black stools (6)

Biliary Colic

Gallstones

  • Symptoms: severe, constant pain and tenderness in the upper right abdominal quadrant, below the right rib cage or below the sternum, appearing hours after a heavy meal and lasting from 1-6 hours; other symptoms: nausea, vomiting or fever; no pain or other symptoms between the attacks (7,8)

Biliary Dyskinesia

Biliary dyskinesia–a motility disorder of the biliary tract, which includes gallbladder dyskinesia and sphincter of Oddi dysfunction (SOD), can cause pain after meals in the upper right abdomen, lasting at least 30 minutes.

Acute Pancreatitis

  • Symptoms: sudden, dull ache and tenderness that develops in few hours, becomes severe and lasts for several days; it can be located in the upper left, middle or right abdomen and can radiate to the back or left shoulder blade; it can become worse within minutes of eating or drinking and after lying down and relieved by sitting and leaning forward; other common symptoms: nausea, vomiting, fever, jaundice
  • Reference: (9,10)

B. PREDOMINANTLY LOWER ABDOMINAL PAIN

Lower abdominal pain is located at the level of the belly button or below on each side.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome

  • Symptoms: abdominal cramps or bloating, or diarrhea within an hour after eating. NOTE: Nausea is NOT a typical symptoms of IBS, but can be caused by another associated condition.
  • Triggering foods (self-reported): large meals, fatty and fried foods, salami, dairy products (especially cheese), chocolate, foods high in insoluble fiber (grains, beans and lentils), fruits high in fructose (apples, pears, mango), plums, drinks with caffeine (coffee, tea, cola, energy drinks) carbonated beverages, alcohol (beer, wine), foods and drinks with artificial sweeteners (high fructose corn syrup, sorbitol, xylitol)
  • Other possible triggers: emotional stress
  • Reference: (11)

Food Poisoning

  • Causes: bacteria, like Salmonella or Escherichia coli from improperly stored/cooled foods often in places with bad hygiene
  • Symptoms: sudden abdominal cramps and several bouts of diarrhea, which usually start more than 6 hours after eating and last for few days; other: nausea, vomiting and, sometimes, fever
  • Reference: (12)

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

Inflammatory bowel disease includes Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis.

  • Symptoms: chronic abdominal cramps, nausea, bloating, diarrhea, usually worse after eating; other: skin rash, joint pains
  • Reference: (13)

Diverticles

Diverticles are abnormal pouches in the large intestine.

  • Symptoms: sudden severe pain in lower left or, sometimes, in lower right abdomen several hours after eating certain foods; inflammation of diverticles (diverticulitis) is associated with fever and diarrhea.
  • Reference: (14)

Ileus

Ileus means cessation of bowel motility, usually due to recent abdominal surgery or drugs, such as opioids (morphine, codeine) or anticholinergics (atropine, biperiden)

  • Symptoms: vague, mild abdominal pain, bloating, nausea and vomiting within few hours of eating or drinking; the condition is a medical emergency and has to be relieved promptly to avoid bowel rupture.
  • References: (15,16,17)

Mechanical Bowel Obstruction

  • Causes: obstipation (severe constipation), adhesions (scar-like bands between intestinal loops) due to abdominal surgery, inflammatory bowel disease, endometriosis or pelvic inflammatory disease, small intestinal lymphoma
  • Symptoms: abdominal cramps, abdominal swelling, nausea or vomiting worse after eating; inability to pass gas or stools
  • Reference: (18)

C. ABDOMINAL PAIN ASSOCIATED WITH SPECIFIC FOOD/INGREDIENTS

Foods High in Soluble Fiber

Large amounts of oats, barley, rye, bananas, beans, peas and lentils can cause abdominal pain with bloating and flatulence (gas pain) starting several hours after ingestion and lasting for several hours.

Low-Fiber Meals

Several hours after meals low in dietary fiber–containing meats, cheese, white bread, fast food, chocolate and other sweets and no or little fruits, vegetables and whole grains–, you may experience constant, severe abdominal pain lasting for several hours.

Lactose Intolerance

  • Triggering foods: milk (usually at least a cup–240 mL)–but not hard cheese or butter–, commercial whey and casein powders; also many drugs and supplements that contain lactose
  • Symptoms: abdominal cramps, bloating and diarrhea after few hours of lactose ingestion

Fructose Malabsorption

  • Triggering foods:
    • Foods that contain more fructose than glucose: fruits/juices (apples, pears, mango), honey, beverage sweetened with high fructose corn syrup (HFCS), mainly soda
    • “Low-sugar” foods sweetened by sorbitol: carbonated beverages, chewing gum

Olestra Side Effects

Olestra (a fat substitute in snacks, like chips) may trigger sudden severe abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, greasy stools or diarrhea in some people; symptoms may last for more than a day (23). However, in one 1999 controlled clinical trial, participants who ingested olestra did not have significantly different symptoms than those who ingested placebo without olestra (24).

Food Allergies

  • Symptoms: sudden upper central abdominal or chest pain, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea within few minutes minutes to 2 hours (immediate reaction) or, in some people, only 4-28 hours (delayed reaction) after eating even small amount of food; other symptoms: hives (bumpy or patchy red, itchy skin rash), itchy lips, mouth and throat; sometimes: swelling of the face and tongue (angioedema) and shortness of breath
  • Common triggering foods in children: wheat, cow’s milk, soy, eggs, wheat, peanuts; in adults: peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish; NOTE: practically any food can trigger allergic reaction in certain people, but one person is usually allergic only to one or few foods.
  • Reference: (19,20)

D. CHILDREN AND ABDOMINAL PAIN AFTER EATING

Abdominal Migraine

Abdominal migraine refers to recurring sudden, severe abdominal pain of no known cause lasting from 1 hour to up to 3 days, nausea, vomiting, inability to eat and paleness.

  • Triggering foods, according to anecdotal reports, may include chocolate, Chinese food with monosodium glutamate (MSG) and processed meats containing nitrites (hot dogs, cold cuts, sausages, salami); other possible triggers: psychological stress. NOTE: the pain can be unrelated to meals.
  • Reference: (28)

Hereditary Fructose Intolerance

Hereditary fructose intolerance (HFI) is a rare genetic disorder of fructose metabolism.

  • Triggering foods: any food, supplement or drug containing fructose, sucrose, sorbitol, oligofructose or fructooligosaccharides (FOS), so fruits, honey, sugar-free chewing gum, some vegetables, like beets and carrots, and most sweetened foods and beverages
  • Symptoms–in order of appearance–: nausea (within an hour), dizziness, hunger, craving for food (due to hypoglycemia), severe upper abdominal pain (after more than 24 hours); other: dark, yellow urine, vomiting, diarrhea.
  • Reference: (21,22)

176 thoughts on “Stomach Pain After Eating”

  1. jenny goh says:

    i have umbilical pain at 10pm after eating noodle with vinegar for lunch.Just wonder is this also irritable bowel syndrome?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      It sounds more like stomach irritation by acid rather than irritable bowel syndrome. Main symptoms of IBS are constipation or loose stools.

    2. Deborah S Sorenson says:

      only if the same foods you eat cause you to have bloating gas , trapped gas. Either diarrhea or constipation . If its only once …it could be an allergy if you dont eat there much. Or food poisoning

  2. Trevor says:

    I at Chinese food Tuesday night about 9pm and hurt a little after. Wednesday was EXTREME pain but took a stomach relief, Thursday I thought I was good, but about 2 hours of waking up, started hurting lightly, but increasing to extreme pain again.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      I don’t know, but one possible cause is gastric ulcer. If this continues to happen, I recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist.

  3. Cyndy says:

    Often, within the hour after I eat greasy/fatty foods, I get an AWEFUL pain near the sternum. It sometimes feels like grinding rocks. The pain may radiate all the way under my rib cage. Sometimes near my right collarbone area. Terrible gas. And bloating. Sometimes the pain is about 2 inches lower than my sternum. Usually wake up in the middle of the night ready to vomit. Can you help? Have cut out dairy, eggs, gluten. Went to urgent care once cause it was so bad an they said liver enzymes are high, but still normal. Was sweating profusely, hard time breathing.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Cyndy, I had 2 thoughts: stomach infection (gastritis or ulcer) or gallstones but you would need to have some tests to get a diagnosis. Gallstones can be detected by an ultrasound.

    2. tinessa says:

      Do you still have your gallbladder? if so this could be the culprit. I would definately get checked.

    3. Kip says:

      It’s your GB. Get it checked out. Livers right next to the stomach and liver on the rt side. It’s job is to break down fat. So when you eat a fatty meal it has to work harder.

    4. Liz says:

      Did you ever figure this out?

  4. Melissa says:

    I am a 42 year old woman, and I have the most awful pain after I eat certain foods (most noteaby takeout pizza). It starts as a tightness in my chest, then can radiate to my throat/neck and upper back. It is sometimes “crushing”. It lasts for hours…I sit upright in bed writing this now at almost 1:00 am, having eaten but two small slices at 5:00 pm. The pain is severe. It is not heart related, as I am quite fit and have regular EKGs for work physicals. I never experience a burn (as in heartburn) although I did suffer terribly from that throughout my pregnancy 6 years ago.

    Additionally, sometimes food gets lodged in my throat and even drinking water won’t make it go down (I can’t even swallow the water, it comes right back up). Please help, I live somewhere with less than stellar medical options right now).

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Melissa, it is possible you may have a problem with proper motility of your throat and esophageal muscles and it may be also related to gastric reflux (I mean, the reflux you have experienced before might have something with impaired muscle mobility too). I don’t know the cause and I cannot suggest any treatment. Having liquid meals and having water with everything solid you eat can help, but I think you should see a doctor; it may be a neurological cause.

    2. David says:

      I have had all of that and more- topics to google is EoE. It took a long time to figure out how to control many health issues I had but a change in diet keeps in under control for me- Fruits and vegetables (for me no corn products; cornstarch), and whole meat. Almonds and oats are also a problem for me so for the most part I try to stick to the veggies, fruits & whole meat. It is very difficult to determine what specifically is causing the issues. It took me about 7 years to determine that my diet was causing a lot of health issues that I never had until I hit 43 years old. I began getting dermatitis on hands, eyelid, behind ears and diet made it all go away. When I go off my diet it comes back along with other health things.

      1. Jan Modric says:

        David, I suppose you are talking about eosinophilic esophagitis. Would you mind to reveal more foods you think trigger the symptoms?

    3. Robin says:

      You ever get figured out?

  5. Courtney says:

    For the past 4 days everything I eat causes a pain in the lower part of my stomach. I could eat just bread or a full meal and id get the same pain. Also have become extremely cold, sat with thermals on, t shirt and a jacket whilst having the heating on the highest for a hour, the pain sometimes randomly comes during the day aswell. My face also becomes hot.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Courtney, this could be a medical emergency, so pleas contact a doctor as soon as possible. We can’t discuss emergency situations here.

  6. Esther says:

    I have severe stomach pain after eating , been to the ER Med doesn’t seem to help ?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Esther, I can’t say much from so little description. The exact location of the pain, eventual other symptoms (heartburn, bloating, excessive gas, blood in the stool, diarrhea, rash…) and the timing of the symptoms (immediately after a meal or later, at night..) can tell more.

  7. Deborah says:

    For approximately last 5 years, if I eat any corn products or peanuts, and depending how much I eat of that (which now that I know I stay away from), I develop burning pain in lower center part of stomach and it can last for up to 5 hours or so. Just the other day I got the same symptom after eating a pear, so will have to give that up next! One time after eating doritos, I forced myself to throw up and was surprised so much of those chips came out. I assume my system isn’t digesting well so the pain must continue until my system finally cleans out! Does this make sense?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Deborah, I don’t know, if corn products, peanuts and pears have anything in common in the sense that they would all cause the same problem. They should not be digested harder than other common foods. If they cause you problems, it is just fine if you avoid them. Theoretically, you could be allergic to all three, but allergic reaction to foods usually involves some mouth and skin itch.

  8. bec says:

    I start off with a dull middle to upper back pain which then spreads around the front to what i think is the lateral chest and where the stomach is, the pain gets worse and worse until im on the floor in tears and pain, it worsens when i try to take deep breaths, it can last from 30 minutes to 5 hours, painkillers dont work, 90% of the time i end up throwing up which sometimes makes it better but the food which i couldve eaten almost 1 – 2 hours before is undigested so its just been sitting in my stomach

    1. Jan Modric says:

      bec,

      you need to see a doctor, I can’t say what it is. Pain from kidney stones can start at the back and moves around to the front side, but that’s just one possibility.

  9. Nkiruka Onyekwelu says:

    I have a gnawing pain right below my rib cage. It starts mildly about 6pm but by 1am it’s way worse. It sometimes feel like severe hunger pangs but it’s not because it’s more uncomfortable when I lie on my stomach. By 4am it starts to abate and I don’t feel it at all during the day time. The circle repeats it’s self by 6pm. It’s happened about 4 times already this year and I’ve had to take antibiotics for about 5 days before it stops. Is there something to make it go away completely?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Nkiruka, “gnawing” pain in the upper middle abdomen is usually from the peptic ulcer in the stomach or abdomen, but other conditions, such as gallstones, would be possible. To know what to do, you would first need to get a diagnosis by a gastroenterologist. A breath test can reveal H. pylori infection, the upper endoscopy can reveal peptic ulcer and an ultrasonography can reveal gallstones, for example.

  10. CC says:

    After lunch, I always get a mild inflamed feeling in my ribs on both sides. Then, I get excessive gas after either that meal or dinner. I already know I am lactose intolerant, but this happens without having dairy. Do you have any idea what the problem could be?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      CC, it sounds that the pain below the ribs you have mentioned may be from gas, which can come from lactose in other foods than dairy. If you also have fructose malabsorption, fruits and other foods high in fructose could cause you gas.

      2 other possible causes of gas are small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO) and intestinal parasites; both need tests to be confirmed.

      I suggest you to read the article I ink and maybe try to avoid certain foods you suspect may be problematic for few days and see if it helps. If not write down all your symptoms in a timeline and discuss with a doctor (gastroenterologist).

  11. Becky says:

    I have constant acid after eating to the point where I now have to take an acid tablet everytime before I eat wether it be fruit meat or pasta ect and before I drink milk I also have loose bowels after eating as well with a constant burning/full censation just below the middle of my rib cage near the upper stomach

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Becky, acid reflux can be caused by hiatal hernia, H. pylori infection of the stomach, bile reflux or food intolerances, such as fructose malabsorption or lactose intolerance, for example. You can write down all the symptoms and known triggers and discuss this with a gastroenterologist. You can also search for a low-FODMAP diet.

  12. reinarly says:

    Every time I finish my meal, I will get this acute pain around my left abdominal also I lose my appetite easily. These last few days, I mostly consume liquid food such as soup and juices which will reduce the pain by a little. Do you have any idea about this?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      reinarly, pain in the left abdomen (upper, lower?) after eating is usually from trapped gas or constipation. Bowel obstruction would be also possible, so I suggest you to visit a doctor.

  13. Heather Wilson says:

    I have been having this burning sensation in my stomach above my belly button since lst night. I can harsly eat i have diarirra i dont kno what to do. Go to the Er or what.. I have had colitis before but nothing with ulcers.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Heather, with a history of colitis, it would be maybe the best to visit a doctor.

  14. Samantha says:

    Great article and it’s very helpful. I have an appointment with a GI next week to check out my symptoms. I have Behcets Disease, a rare vascular autoimmune disease. I’ve been on Cellcept, Methotrexate and Colchicine for over a decade. None of which are friendly to the stomach. However, I have tolerated these harsh drugs very well for years.
    Approximately two months ago, I started experiencing pain in my abdomen that began initially after eating but now seems to be most of the time. It’s also in different locations from time to time. But the most severely symptoms begin right after eating. I have had pain in my right flank area that wraps around my side into my rib cage and sometimes in my shoulder blade. This pain will last for hours at times. I’ve had a decrease in appetite and haven’t been eating much. Due to this, I’ve lost around ten pounds in two months.
    I also started experiencing pain around the belly button. Which can last for hours. This is accompanied with nausea without vomiting.
    In addition to all if these fun symptoms, I was diagnosed with a vitamin D deficiency (level was a 10) and a zinc deficiency.
    I do not drink milk but I do consume veggies and hard cheeses such as cheddar. I do not eat red meat much and eat some poultry. But again, my diet hasn’t been consistent due to loss in appetite. The pain gets very intense and I feel like I am living with some type of abdominal pain at all times. I know the Behcets Disease can mimic Crohns and I have some symptoms of gall bladder issues but the most frustrating thing is deciding what is a medical emergency when I am so immunosuppressed. Do you ever see immunosuppressants wreak havoc on a digestive system from years of use? I realize I have a GI appointment on Tuesday but I thought that I would post my story incase someone else can relate. I will try to remember to post an update after my appointment. Again, great article.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Samantha, the pain that travels around the trunk toward the shoulder blade could be caused by gallstones, for example, but other abdominal conditions, such as trapped gas, pancreatitis, abdominal infections could also irritate the diaphragm muscle and trigger pain in the shoulder blade. You can check here how abdominal disorders can be related to shoulder blade pain: http://www.ehealthstar.com/shoulder-blade-pain.php. Kidney stones can cause pain in the flank that can persist for few hours. Zinc deficiency can greatly affect GIT and cause anorexia and stomach pain – you can ask a doctor for zinc supplements; also ask about vitamin D. I can’t answer in detail about your drugs – you probably know their possible side effects, but it’s hard to say what is from what. Small intestinal overgrowth (SIBO) would be possible or some pathological bacteria could overgrow in the colon, so ask your doctor abot a stool test for bacteria, and about antibiotics and probiotics – the later may help to stabilize your gut flora. If your symptoms have suddenly worsened in last days, you may want to visit ER.

  15. Tummytrouble says:

    I was diagnosed with an ileus yesterday. My doctor gave me Valium to help with spasms I feel better today and Monday I see my GI doc. I’m worried that once the Valium wears off my symptoms reoccur

    1. Jan Modric says:

      OK; I’m too late for this.

  16. Sam says:

    My son (14 yrs old) started having stomach pain since early August right after we ate at a local Ethiopian restaurant in Atlanta. I got really sick about a day after we ate there and was sick for at least 1 week and my son got sick after 2 days after me. I was the only person to eat this chicken dish and he had some of mine. My wife and other son had something else and didn’t get sick. I was able to recover, but my 14 yr old still hasn’t recovered after 2.5 months. His initial symptoms were exactly like mine, vomiting, bloating and belching (no diarrhea). Then he started complaining of stomach pain right around the belly button. Took him to the Pedriatric ER and an x-ray showed constipation. They prescribed Mirax for 1 week. His bowel movements went from normal to loose and still complained of stomach pains. We took him back to the ER. They said that he is not constipated and gave him Maalox and Benedril. He felt immediately better and his appetite got back to normal for a few days. Then the pain came back. We took him to a Pediatric Gastrologist. He put him on Carafate in case he had an ulcer. That made didn’t help with any of the pain. The Gastrologist did an endoscopy and colonoscopy (byopsies) along with stool samples and blood samples which revealed that he tested negative for h pylori, celiac disease, cancer and Crohn’s Disease or any parasites (single ova). Endoscopy did reveal that his gastric body had inflammation and elevated eosinophils. On the report he noted “Eosinophilic Gastritis”. The doctor immediately suspected food allergies. We have restricted our son on many restricted diets and there has been no change in his symptoms. My son’s condition seemed to evolved into fluctuating pain and extreme belching after meals. The Gastrologist put him on the liquid Chromate while we wait for the appointment for an allergy test. The pain seemed to have reduced but now he constantly feels nauseous and doesn’t seem to have an appetite. We suspect that it is some kind of a parasite or bacteria, but the Gastrologist doesn’t think that because we have haven’t travelled outside the country lately. To appease us, he ordered a tri ova stool test which we are waiting for the results. It is three samples Thurs, Friday and Monday. I have read several papers and abstracts online where there were cases of people who had the same symptoms as my son but tested negative for parasites — especially a case in Turkey. They treated and cured a patient with Treatment with albendazole 400 mg twice daily for 5 days led to the disappearance of ascites and other signs and symptoms. My understanding is that parasites are extremely difficult to test. Do you think we should ask the doctor to treat him event if the tri ova test is negative? What do you think is the most likely cause of my son’s symptoms?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Sam, I can only guess, but:
      1. The fact that both you and your son had symptoms after eating the same foods strongly suggests food poisoning, either bacterial or parasitic.
      2. Excessive belching is from excessive gas, which is almost certainly either from by bacteria or parasites.
      3. Relatively late onset of symptoms in your son (3 days after a meal) is maybe a bit more characteristic for parasitic that bacterial infection. Prolonged course of symptoms also speak more for a parasitic infection. Eating in an Ethiopian restaurant may be a bit like traveling outside the country…
      4. It is true that parasites my be hard to diagnose and repeated tests may be needed. It’s not only ova to search. One-cell parasites, like Gardia or Entamoeba that do not produce ova are also possible.
      5. If no parasites are diagnosed after several test, treatment against parasites could be possible, but this is solely a decision of the doctor. Do not try any kind of antibiotic or other drug treatment on your own. In meantime, diet low in carbohydrates (bread, pasta, poatoes, rice, baked products, fruits/juices, cola..) may help prevent belching.

  17. paige says:

    Had this problem for over 8 years
    After eating dinner (Any type of Meat or Greasy food) and not all the time but mostly 1-3 hours later I get this pain an inch or two below my ribcage and it usually lasts all night or until I throw up all of the food in my stomach (all of the food/liquids) and an hour or two after emptying my stomach the pain subsides…. This recent year though when I get the pain in my stomach I’m starting to feel Pressure and Pain in the spot when I eat the foods listed above ^^ and the only way I’m able to get rid of this pain/pressure is to curl up in a ball and put pressure back on my stomach or to empty my stomach of all the food and liquid in it…..
    but I feel like 8 years of only finding relief of this is puking I feel like it must be doing some damage to my throat etc… Is there any suggestions on what this could be from?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      paige, I strongly suggest you to discuss this with a gastroenterologist. Protein foods (meat, cheese, eggs, soy) can stay in the stomach for a long time, when they can not be digested due to a lack of either stomach acid (hypochlorhydria, achlorhydria) or the enzymes (pepsin) required for the digestion. Another or additional cause could be a narrowing at the end of your stomach (pyloric stenosis), either as an anatomical abnormality or a complication of a gastric ulcer, for example.

      Try to make a decent list of exact foods that most regularly cause you problems, and a list of exact symptoms and pain locations and timing in which they occur and discuss this with a doctor. You might be able to tolerate oils better than solid fats.

  18. Steve says:

    I have severe and constant upper left abdominal pain that radiates through to my back. It is often worse after eating but becomes unbearable when lying down, especially lying on my back. I’ve had 3 DVTs in last year (I have a clotting disorder but this still seems excessive), some rectal beading and regular blood in sputum, but this may be linked to anticoagulants. Had clear ultrasound, endoscopy, colonoscopy, MRCP, capsule endoscopy and CT and m lipase / calcium levels are normal. I’m on morphine and desperately want to come off but when I try (after a week) the pain is unbearable.

    I’ve been diagnosed Functional Abdominal Pain Disorder (equivalent of I don’t know) but the symptoms don’t really fit (pain after eating; pain lying down). Any ideas? If I could be guaranteed that this is it for life and won’t get much worse (note it is worsening), I could carry on and try to live life, but I do wonder if something has been missed.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Steve, after all investigations you had, I don’t think I can guess any better. One type of functional abdominal pain is “splenic flexure syndrome” due to trapped gas in the upper left part of the colon near the spleen. This pain often radiates to the lefts shoulder blade or even to the left arm. It can be aggravated by constipation or by foods that cause gas (foods high in FODMAPs or dietary fiber). Constipation is aggravated by morphine and eventually by other medications…

  19. Miranda says:

    Started having a pain in my right lower abdomen yesterday. I have already had my appendix removed, however this feels similar. Last night it began to progress to severe lower abdominal cramping shortly after eating which is now lasting close to 2 hours before I begin to feel relief. I made the mistake of eating a bagel this morning and tried to eat again a couple hours ago. I have been diagnosed with IBS however this seems too extreme to be IBS. Do you think it could be something more serious?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Miranda, even after appendix removal, an adjacent part of the intestine (cecum) can get inflamed.

  20. Priscilla says:

    I have a pain in upper abdomen to the bottom of center of rib cage. Worse when laying down. With excessive belching. Have had for 4 days now.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Priscilla, upper central abdominal pain with excessive belching usually speaks for a stomach problem, for example, gastritis caused by H. pylori bacteria. A gastroenterologist can tell, if a breath, blood or stool test can provide more information.

  21. Rachel says:

    My 12 year old son has been having some stomach trouble over the last 2 weeks. Every time he eats, he burps a ton, then becomes nauseous, begins to feel warm accompanied with stabbing pain in the mid abdomen. I took him off all dairy a week ago and I have no idea what it could be. He did eat plain pasta this afternoon and was fine but then ate a zone protein bar and felt horrible. Tonight i made him bland chicken noodle soup and salad and he seems ok. Burping, but seems normal.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Rachel, suddenly increased burping and nausea may speak for bacterial or parasitic infection from food poisoning, for example.

  22. Olive says:

    Since 2 days ago, whenever I have a full meal I get the following: 1) stomach pain (esp between the rib cages), 2) bloating, 3) nausea, 4) feeling of a lump in my throat. It is not as bad when I have very small meals (when I eat only a quarter of what I normally eat). Please note that I’m 5’4″ and 120pounds and excercise fairly regularly so I doubt it’s a case of overall poor health – and this only started to happen 2 days ago.. and has not stopped since.

    The pain in my stomach and nausea can last for a few hours after my meal.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Olive, feeling of a lump in the throat may be from acid reflux and one possible cause (which also causes bloating and burping) is H. pylori infection. This is treated by prescribed antibiotics, but you would need to get a diagnosis first.

  23. kal says:

    Hi all I am currently experiencing constipation followed by diarrhea and pain under my left ribcage is constant. I can hear all my bowl movement it feels like I have done 1000 sit ups.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      kal, pain under the left rib cage can be caused by trapped gas in the part of the large intestine that runs below the rib cage. If you feel ill, I suggest you to go to the doctor. If you think it’s more diet related, you can try a low-FODMAP diet, which includes less sugars and certain types of fiber.

  24. peter says:

    I am always nauseous but especially after eating and especially after eating meat like a steak. I burp the taste of my meal for several hours after and lie in bed nauseous all night. i have near constant bloating and gas. always nauseous in the morning and cannot eat solids for breakfast. nauseousness and bloating starts immediately after eating or drinking anything.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      peter, if it’s mainly meat and other high-protein foods that cause your problems, try to avoid eating them in the evening. Instant nausea and bloating after meals can be from an infection of the stomach by H. pylori bacteria. This infection can cause stomach inflammation, which can result in decreased gastric acid secretion (achlorhydria), which could result in slower digestion of proteins. This is just one possibility, other common causes are intestinal parasites (from food poisoning) or small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO). A gastroenterologist can give you a diagnosis, possibly with the help of breath and stool tests.

  25. Heather says:

    Extreme, intense, double over pain in upper middle abdomen that goes “through” to middle back. Feels sharp/stabbing and then burning and then dull, then back to stabbing. Usually pain lasts up to 2-3 hours.
    Sometimes have gas and belching with pain, not usually. Been to the er twice, first time was told IBS, second time told dyspepsia and given Prilosec. Prilosec doesn’t help. Also tried gas-x, gaviscon and align. Have had to take hydrocodone for pain, but recently it doesn’t help. At er they give a maalox and lidocaine drink and it knocks pain out almost immediately. Haven’t had a good bowel movement in about 4 days, just small ones. Strange smelling urine last night. Er doc recommended a gastroscopy. Help, please!

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Heather, pain in the upper central abdomen can arise from the stomach, gallbladder or pancreas, and also from trapped gas in the colon.

      Gastroscopy can reveal a stomach ulcer, for example.

      Ultrasonography can reveal gallstones or pancreatitis, for example. Ultrasonography is less invasive, so you can ask a doctor if it makes sense to do it before eventual gastroscopy.

      Strange smelling urine can be from dehydration, starvation (if you were eating very little in last days), urinary tract infection or liver disease.

      Your symptoms sound like medical emergency, so try to get a diagnosis from a doctor as soon as possible.

  26. Dana Laskowski says:

    Hi I am a 40 yr old female, I recently had a bout with diverticulitis, got that all cleared up was on 2 antibiotics. 2 weeks later I start having pain in my right side just below my rib cage, it comes and goes sometimes it’s a really quick sharp pain sometimes it’s just a dull ache, my abdomen there may even well some…..I do not have a gallbladder…I quit smoking 34 days ago….Please help if you can as I have no insurance for a bunch of test to be ran. Thank You!

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Dana, antibiotics can affect your normal intestinal bacteria and cause an overgrowth of some pathological bacteria. A quick pain or dull ache could be from trapped gas produced by bacteria. I don’t really know if this is the case and what to do. Doctors usually recommend probiotic supplements along with antibiotics, but you should ask your doctor if this is safe for you after diverticulitis. Another possibility would be that the diverticulitis has recurred – this would require repeated antibiotic treatment but only if your doctor says so.

  27. Radley says:

    Hi I am a 29 yr old female and for the last 6 months, I’ve been getting severe pain, once or twice a week. It always starts at about 1am, waking me from sleep. So at least 6 hours after eating. I get a sharp pain just under my rib cage and just below rib cage on my left side. I have to get up and sit in a chair hunched forward. The pain is severe and makes me feel quite lightheaded and nauseous. I get a cold sweat and usually end up in tears. The pain lasts for at least 4 hours, usually longer during this time I cannot sleep which has a knock on effect the next day, it is making work difficult. Antacids don’t make any difference. I now take codeine for the pain which does take the edge off.
    I have been given omeprazole by my GP while test are undergoing. Stool sample showed nothing, blood test for ulcer-negative. Amylase and lipase near normal, inflammation markers raised but only slightly. I have also had an ultrasound which confirmed gallstones although the pain is always on my left side.
    I have been keeping a food diary and so far have not noticed any patterns, I have a generally healthy diet with exercise and a manual job although I do smoke. Don’t drink alcohol often.
    I take lamotrogine and folic acid which i have been taking for years with no problems. Started citalopram 1 year ago 20mg per day.
    Any ideas to look into would be greatly appreciated, and any changes I can make to reduce the frequency or severity would be grand.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Radley, intense pain lasting for several hours plus nausea is typical for colic pain caused by cramps in the hollow organs, mainly due to gallstones and kidney stones. I can hardly imagine how could gallstones cause pain on the left side, but a gastroenterologist may be able to say if this would be possible. Stones can also appear in the pancreas – a doctor would need to check for them by ultrasound – I’m not sure if he/she did it when checking for gallstones. Kidney stones (in the ureter) typically cause pain “in the flank” that is on the side, but more in the back than in the abdomen, and can radiate down to the groin.

      Trapped gas in the part of the colon near the spleen can cause severe pain in the upper left abdomen (splenic flexure syndrome), which can sometimes radiate to the chest and shoulder blade on the same side. It can occur in anyone, but mainly in people with irritable bowel syndrome. A general advice is to try a “low-FODMAP diet,” which is low in fructose, lactose and certain fibers (search online).

  28. Ginger says:

    I’m 47 yo female. For past week or so, I’ve had horrible cramp-like abdominal pain on the lower right side (I’ve had an ablasion so I don’t have periods but this is the nearest I can compare it to). I can curl up with knees to chest to help some. Eating seems to make it worse for several hours afterward. It feels as if I would feel much better if I could pass gas or have a BM but that doesn’t usually happen and, when it does, it doesn’t really ease the pain. Since the pain hasn’t gotten worse or become excruciating in a short amount of time and I have no fever or vomitting/diarrhea, I didn’t think appendix was the problem based on what I’ve tead about the progressive worsening so I haven’t rushed to the ER but it’s certainly in the right area. This renders me pretty useless several times throughout the day for over a week now.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Ginger, when you will feel the pain the next time, try to locate the most tender area with your fingers, remember it and then tell a doctor about it.

      In acute appendicitis, pain usually starts around the belly button and then moves toward the lower right abdomen. Chronic appendicitis can, rarely, occur. There are other parts of the intestine near the appendix that could be inflamed (diverticulitis) or blocked (tumor). The pain could also arise from an ovary. The first investigation after physical examination is usually abdominal ultrasound.

  29. Pamela Schmidt says:

    I am 54 yo woman. If I eat and then 1/2 hour later lie down for a nap, I will wake with terrible gassy pains and then need for bowel movement – which normally leads to frequent/urgent bowel movements over the next 1 to 2 hours. No nausea, sweats, fever and after my system cleans out I seem to be ok. I have been told I have excitable bowel, but I don’t understand why this happens if I lie down to sleep? I have had colonoscopy and all was clear.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Pamela, do you have these problems even if you do not take a nap after a meal? If so, this might mean you actually have an irritable bowel syndrome. I can’t explain any details. You can try with smaller meals or with avoiding naps after meals.

  30. stephanie says:

    Hello ,
    Today I woke up feeling nasuated with the chills and diarrhea. Through out the day I have had severve pains almost like contractions starting in the middle of my stomach and spreading to the sides. The pain is excruciating and has occured like clockwork every 30 minutes to an hour for about a minute at a time. Accompanied by the pain I am also experiencing a constant lower back pain and on my sides as well. I don’t have a fever but my legs and neck feel extremely achy.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Stephanie, such symptoms can occur in bacterial food poisoning, which often heals on its own. I can’t say if you have this or not. If your symptoms do not start to improve soon, you might want to visit a doctor.

  31. k smudge says:

    Hello i had bowel reconstruction 4 months ago. This week I cannot eat anything apart from.soup or milk my stomach burns around belly button area. Constipated now diarrhea. Gp was worried sent me for xray,xray showed nothing. As soon as i eat anything it burns in my stomach and I have urgent feeling to defecate. Help plz

    1. Jan Modric says:

      k smudge, it seems that your bowel is irritated from some reason, once moving fast and once slowly. I can’t help here, because I don’t know what is the cause. A doctor should check if an infection exists – an X-ray alone cannot exclude infection, so if you continue to have problems, you may need some blood tests or ultrasound or whatever investigation a doctor recommends.

  32. Cindy says:

    Everytime I finish eating approximately 1 hour after, I suffer from stomach pains and eventually mild back pain. I also have excessive gas after my meals with more frequent bowel movements.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Cindy, few examples of conditions that can cause your problems are lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, intestinal parasites, irritable bowel syndrome. You may want to try elimination diets for each food intolerance mentioned (lactose-free, low-fructose or low-FODMAP diet)…If it does not help in about 4 days, you can visit a doctor.

  33. Mark says:

    Hi I am a man 39 years old. This pain seems to happen randomly about 4 or 5 times a year. It starts just under my rib cage like a cold feeling pain in my stomach and the first day is worse I feel unwell and achy all over with stomach cramps then the pain moves slowly down to my lower abdomen where it tends to stay for a few days and i sometimes get constipated or sometimes have diarrhea. It last about a week in total slower improving as the days go by

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Mark, this can be due to occasional mild food poisoning, or certain foods just do not agree with you. You might have a mild fructose malabsorption, for example, in which fruits and other foods high in fructose could cause you problems.

      1. Mark says:

        Thank you Jan

  34. yogi says:

    Hello
    From last One week After having food I am experiencing the severe burning sensation for hours but I am feeling hungry too.butter milk is helping me in pain sometimes.is this a serious issue ?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      yogi, burning and hunger can occur in a stomach or duodenal (peptic) ulcer or in stomach infection. If your symptoms do not improve soon, I recommend you visiting a doctor.

  35. Natalie says:

    I think i have IBS after I ate lasanga i had abdominal pain in the lower part. I also had very loose stool. What can i do?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Natalie, if it’s a mild food poisoning, symptoms should go away in few days on its own. If you have high fever or your symptoms start to worsen, visit a doctor. Drink enough water because you may lose it a lot with loose stools.

  36. Layne Monk says:

    I have had excessive gas ( not belching) for several months. No odor and no problem with urinating or having a bowel movement but in the last three days I have been experiencing lower abdominal cramps and pain approximately !6-8 hours after eating any type of meal. Eliminated dairy and starchy foods with no change. After an hour or two of pain and constant gas it subsides. Normal bowel movement daily. Once pain stops, the tenderness is isolated to the left side between my pelvic bone and my navel. Would appreciate your input.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Layne, pain 6-8 hours after meals and left lower tenderness speak for a colon involvement. Pain could be simply from excessive gas, for example due to fructose malabsorption; in this case you may want to try a low-fructose diet or a bit more thorough low-FODMAP diet and you should notice a difference within few days.

      Eating a lot of foods high in soluble fiber (legumes, barley, oats) alone can cause gas and pain.
      Intestinal parasites, such as Giardia, can cause bloating and gas.

      Crohn’s disease usually presents with more symptoms, such as loose stools, low-grade fever, fatigue…

      Diverticulitis could be possible.

      Colon cancer before 50 is rare and it does not cause bloating.

      In general, if you experience only gas and pain, but not really some obvious changes in stool consistency or color and if you do not feel ill, then you first try to have few more eliminating diets. If this does not help in a couple of weeks, you may want to have some stool test for blood or parasites.

  37. Tina says:

    I have pain after I eat noodles tuna an onions an mayo …. on left side under my rib what can cause it happen ever time I eat it…

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Tina, probably the most common cause of pain in the upper left abdomen below the ribs is gas in the large intestine. This symptom may be a part of “splenic flexure syndrome,” which may be a form of irritable bowel syndrome. In short: if this is the only food that causes you pain, then don’t eat it.

  38. Michaela says:

    I get fatigued after I eat followed By a sharp pain under my sternum then followed by an excruciating pain in my lower left side. I wake up nauseous and always nearly vomit before going number 2. Bile backs up in my stomach. My gallbladder is at 30 percent. No gall stones. No kidney stones. The pain in my lower back can get up to a 15. Doctoring is proving slow. Any thoughts.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Michaela, bile reflux can cause nausea. It’s a doctor who can find a cause. You may have sphincter of Oddi dysfunction (SOD), for example. Or the exit of your stomach (pylorus) does not close properly from some reason. Sharp pain under the sternum is likely from the acid reflux (GERD). Before you get a diagnosis, you can search for foods to avoid in GERD (alcohol, chocolate…).

  39. Miguela says:

    Thank you. I will talk to my doctor about this

  40. lattice davis says:

    About 1hour after eating a Chinese shrimp fried rice, and lomein noodles, I had severe gas, and lower left abdominal pain, I am not able to have a bm, and the pain radiates from lower left abdominal to lower right pain, I took a enema and small amounts came out, still in pain

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Lattice, I’mm little late to this. Maybe some spices irritated you or you had a mild food poisoning.

  41. Gaz says:

    So many diff things come up
    I have
    Nausea
    Vomitting
    Rapid heart palpitations
    Diarrhoea within 15mins of eating
    Bloating
    Abdominal pain
    Goes from front to back
    Gas

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Gaz, you don’t say for how long does this last. If it’s chronic they may be intestinal parasites or irritable bowel syndrome, for example.

  42. Krista says:

    I ate breakfast Friday morning and by noon I was having pain what felt like my chest but moved down to my left upper abdomen that was dull and consistent with intermittent sharp pain that felt like it came up to my chest came and went like labor until Sunday then it felt like something was stuck but sharp pain was as often. Monday late afternoon my bowel movement was almost black but afterwards I felt a lot better. Now today, Tuesday I am still tender and sharp pain comes when I sit a certain way or laying down a little. Yes I am passing gas but my last bowel movement was yesterday about 4 in the afternoon. Clues? My age is 44

    1. Krista says:

      Edit Sunday the sharp was not as often

      1. Jan Modric says:

        Krista, black stool my be from bleeding from the stomach. Unless you have eaten some food that would color stool black (blueberries or such), I strongly recommend you to visit a doctor.

  43. Marah says:

    I have sudden pain in my left lower side abdomen after eating and sometimes it occur after bowel, it is not that severe pain, but its like there is heartbeat mild pain in my left lower side. what do you think it is?!!

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Marah, if the pain is related to meals and bowel movements, it is probably from the colon. It can be anything from constipation to colon inflammation. Colon cancer before 40 is very rare.

  44. Marizel Hommel says:

    I had this feeling like bloating and eat little bit of meal make me full easy, uncomfortable swelling of abdomen, belching like u have a ball or big rock in my right abdomen below my breast, burning when I don’t eat and also burning after I eat. wake me up during the night and all I want to do is passing gas and burp to lower my pain or try to use the bathroom. Pain around my upper back and also if I don’t eat I start vomiting and bad headech. The doctor did endoscopy, ct scan, colonoscopy, and hida scan. The result is littlebit thickening of my urinary bladder and thickening of my bowel. Hida scan result 77% don’t know what was going on. I am really prostrating to find a cure of my illness. Pls is any one can help me

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Marizel, the exact cause of your problem needs to be confirmed with investigations. It is very likely that the problem is in your gastrointestinal tract. Causes I can think of:

      1. H pylori infection of the stomach with or without ulcer
      2. Small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO)
      3. Intestinal parasites
      4. Fructose malabsorption
      5. Lactose intolerance
      6. Celiac disease
      7. Crohn’s disease

      You can ask your doctor what of the above has been confirmed or excluded for sure. In meantime, it can help if try a low-FODMAP diet (low in fructose, lactose and polyols).

  45. Brooke Merritt says:

    I’m at the point where any amount of food causes a full rock in the stomach feeling. I’m dairy,gluten, egg, grain free and very careful and still not able to feel right. I can gain ten pounds overnight if I come in contact with small amounts of the wrong foods. This is creating a mental war with what to eat…

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Brooke, you may also want to rule out fructose malabsorption and if you still have a problem, you can ask a gastroenterologist for H. pylori and other tests.

  46. Janez says:

    Hey everyone I’m trying to find out which would best describe my condition, and what I should do to feel relief. A few days ago I woke up and tried to eat a normal breakfast and a few minutes into eating, only taken a few bites, I started experiencing severe chest pain and stomach pain, felt a little bit nauseous too. And now it’s been happening every single time I try to eat it doesn’t matter what I try to eat, everything from small portions, liquids, healthy greasy, even water can sometimes trigger this pain, I’m not sure what else to do and I don’t have any money to go to the doctor. Someone please help.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Janez, to me it sounds it could be acid reflux — gastric acid going from your stomach up into the esophagus and causing pain known as heartburn. I can’t just guess what is the cause in your case, but an infection of the stomach with the bacterium H. pylori would be possible. A doctor can make tests and give you diagnosis. Avoiding certain foods (alcohol, chocolate, fried foods, spices) can lessen the painful episodes. You can try for diet in gastric reflux or “GERD.” Antacids (tums) can neutralize some acid. For stronger drugs you would need prescription.

  47. Natalie Williams says:

    Last night I ate some macadamia nuts, not a lot I would say about 6. ALl night I had chest pain, I though I was going to have a heart attack, not acid reflux. Today my upper stomach is bloated and I feel I have a lump in the upper stomach. I have eaten some pineapple and bee pollen and a little chicken. I also have had some raw apple cider vinegar but the discomfort is still there. I thought I might have too little acid in my stomach but can these symptoms be trigger by a few nuts?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Natalie, sometimes some food does not agree with you and then all the stomach content remains in the stomach for several hours or even a day. Nuts contain mainly proteins and fats, so they tend to stay in the stomach for long time, anyway.

  48. janet says:

    I only remember I carabao mango Yesterday then at night I suffer pain at the left side of my abdomen maybe I don’t bite All I only swallow after that I When I drink water Im blowing

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Janet, mango is high in fructose. If you also have such problems after eating honey, apples and pears, you may have fructose malabsorption.

  49. Lisa says:

    For the past 6 months I have pain in my Lowet left side of abdominal after I eat . Dull to Sharp pains that can last an hour . For about a year I have had horrible hemrhoids with constant changes in my in my bowel movements. I am starting to get very concerned about the pain the pain in my lower left abdomin . It takes a long time to get into a gastro doctor

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Lisa, I strongly suggest you to visit a gastroenterologist. Such pain may be caused by thrombosed hemorrhoids or diverticulitis, for example. Colorectal cancer is very rare before age of 50.

  50. Kim says:

    I don’t need to set patterns with my issue but I do know that cheetos or other cheesy crisps with the orange powder, pizza and fajita wraps all give me issues guaranteed. Other times, I could eat something one day that would give me a reaction and then eat it again the next day and I would be fine. I don’t always have problems with takeaway foods or fatty foods but the above items will give me my worst version every time 🙁
    If I have something for dinner about 7/8 PM it normally wakes me up about 2AM. It starts feeling like painful gas and then I have to sit on the toilet whilst I have cramps and it will give me diarrhoea. On my most severe bouts it’s agonising cramps that also make me feel like I need to be sick because of how much it causes my stomach to contract and push. There is always diarrhoea with it and I tend to be on the loose side anyway.
    The problem is I’m overweight so the second I visit the doctor they just tell me to go away lose weight without helping me work out what my issue is, do my symptoms sound like anything in particular?

    1. Kim says:

      Edit, that should say I don’t notice set patterns with the exception of those foods.
      Also, I do not experience this every evening, only certain things I have at dinnertime so I don’t notice a pattern but it’s always about six hours after eating. The pain feels like intense cramps that make me need to push to expel my bowels

      1. Jan Modric says:

        Kim, having loose stools and gas all the time is not normal and does not comes just from being overweight. Obviously, first you can try to not eat those triggering foods for few days and see if it helps. Having symptoms several hours after eating could be from a delayed-onset allergic reaction to a certain food ingredient. Allergic reaction is usually associated with some itching around the mouth. It is an allergologist who can make tests. But you don’t need to have an allergy (because you said you don’t always have problems after eating those foods) — some people are just irritated by some foods or food additives.

  51. Ellen says:

    I’ve notice after eating salad I get pain in the middle of my back, it feels like trap gas

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Pain from trapped gas is usually felt in the upper abdomen below the rib cage on the right or left side, but also in the back. It can radiate up to the chest and in the shoulder.

      Pain at the right side of the back after meals can be also from gallstones.

  52. Grace Arogundade says:

    My faeces was black after about three hours of consuming Noodles, followed by pain in my tummy and dizziness plus vomit few hours after I defecated the blackstool. What should I be worried about?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Grace, black stool can be from blood in the stool, which is considered medical emergency. You should be worried about bleeding from the stomach or bowel. Please get this checked with a doctor soon.

  53. Karen says:

    My stomach was in agony id eaten fried chicken and chips i started cramping gid it was really bad i couldnt walk i had 2 buscopan 1 amyyriptyline i was a bit sick agony for 1 and half hour’s time what is it always comes on after eating sometimes cant stand it karen

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Karen, if it only happens after certain foods, like fried chicken, avoid it and that’s it. If you think you have a problem with all fatty or other foods, check it with a doctor.

  54. Esteban says:

    I have pain in my uper left side by my rib cage and it started about 5 months ago and then it went away for to months and now it came back . I used to eat a lot of junk food like hot Cheetos and stuff like that then I stopped and started drinking a lot of water and eating healthy that’s when it stopped hurting but yesterday I ate Hot Cheetos and a little bit of junk food and it started hurting again and some times I feel nauseated but I don’t throw up. What can it be any help? Thanks

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Esteban, it seems you already found at least one cause. Certain foods can irritate the stomach.

  55. ajinkya bhosale says:

    I am 52 years old and I suffer vomiting after eating normal food. I tried eating only fruits as dinner but to no surprise I had the same feeling. Some 2 months ago I was detected with thyroid but after having the priscribed medicine I was well and good. So please suggest me some habbits of eating so that I can overcome vomiting and uneasiness.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Ajinkya, I can’t recommend any diet without knowing the exact cause of your nausea. The doctor who diagnosed you with a thyroid disorder can tell, if this can cause vomiting. If you have low thyroid activity (hypothyroidism), it would be possible that your stomach empties slow (gastroparesis), which can cause nausea and vomiting. There are other causes of nausea and vomiting – you may want to see a gastroenterologist.

  56. Andy says:

    I have suffered on and off with digestive issues for the past 6 years. Last year I had an endoscopy which revealed a 2cm sliding hiatus hernia and mild gastritis. I have been taking a PPI med for the past 2 years, together with Gaviscon and have generally kept things under control. I know what food causes flare ups and avoid or moderate them accordingly.
    About 4 weeks ago I had what I thought was a flare up and so, as I normally do, I doubled the PPI’s and cut my food intake back drastically. However, I have just been deteriorating since and have developed symptoms that are new and worrisome.
    Usual symptoms are present – gnawing pain underneath sternum, heartburn across chest, burping, nausea and taste in mouth. New symptoms are sharp pain in back between shoulders within 2 minutes of eating, burning sensation across whole of thoracic area and pain in mid back left side. I am also suffering from shortness of breath, palpitations and dizziness. I am currently undergoing cardiac tests and so far all is fine on that front.
    Obviously I am concerned about my pancreas but, in the absence of racing heart beat and any sort of fever, I have been battling on to see if I can recover it back. I have had ultrasound earlier this year for gallbladder and there were no stones, just a 5mm polyp.
    I would welcome any thoughts you might have please. The back burning sensation is the most alarming to me.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Andy, I can’t say what your problem is, but all the symptoms you’ve mentioned, including back pain, can occur in a severe gastric acid reflux. I STRONGLY recommend you to visit a gastroenterologist soon in order to prevent complications, such as perforation of the esophagus.

  57. ben says:

    I have stomach pain ,vomiting after a meal and passing black stool what could problems

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Ben, black stools can be from bleeding in the upper gastrointestinal tract, most likely from stomach. It can be from a stomach ulcer or cancer, for example. I strongly recommend you to visit a doctor soon to have some tests.

  58. Esmari Botha says:

    Hi please help. I get servere pain on my right side of my stomach after having greasy food. But after a had a glass of juice it got worse. Its so bad it hurts when im lying down. The pain is also in my back??

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Esmari, I can’t tell what it is. The pain in the upper right abdomen triggered by heavy meals can be from gallstones, for example. Such pain can be also felt on the right side of the back or in the right shoulder blade. You may want to visit a doctor.

  59. Maureen Scaramell says:

    For almost two years I have had severe pain in the upper left stomach, Gerd, hiatal and umbiblical cord hernias. The pain is killing me and I have lost 25 pounds. I have gone to Drs, who say it is gastritis. I am taking Paxil and now a strong antibiotic called Xifaxan. The pain never goes away. Does anyone have some suggestions?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Maureen, one possible cause of pain in the upper left abdomen is trapped wind. You may want to try a low-FODMAP diet.

  60. Licea says:

    I feel something in my stomach after eating when i move immediately especially when i walk there is something i feel moving inside my lower left stomach and oftentimes i experience having irritable vowel. I’m experiencing this almost a week.

    I first feel this when i eat huge meal then i walk immediately to the 5th floor by stairs because im late. help

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Licea, big meals can cause such feeling.

  61. Antony says:

    Sir

    I have stomack pain since 2 months. I am using homeo tincture medicine 10 drops. Now I have burning full time and when eat and water drink this sensation is too high and discomfort. Pls advise me. Also I have 5 mm stone in gb

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Antony, if the burning became worse after starting tincture, you may want to stop with it. I suggest you to arrange an appointment with a gastroenterologist who can check for H pylori infection of the stomach, peptic ulcer, etc.

  62. Holly says:

    I’ve been getting Pain in my lower left side within the hour after eating. Then I’ll have gas or a bm somewhat loose but not diarrhea. Is this Gastritis?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Holly, gastritis causes pain in the upper middle stomach and does not cause excessive gas.

  63. Vesna P says:

    I’ve been experiencing severe pain, with nausea, that begins about an hour after eating and that typically lasts 2 hours. It can sometimes be so severe that it stops me in my tracks and has even sent me to the ER. I experience pelvic pain throughout the day, too, but that’s not so intense/stabbing. We thought this was originally associated with my Endometriosis but it’s now being treated and I’m still having all of this pain. I feel like whatever is going on is also making my bladder very sensitive and my bowels have been off… they are typically harder in the beginning, then really loose and I never feel like I’m fully emptying. I’m sorry for all the gory details but I’m frustrated. First I went through seeing multiple urologists thinking it was primarily a bladder issue, then obgyn for the Endometriosis and now am moving onto gastro. I also learned that now 2 close family members had or now have colon cancer, & that 3 others died from prostate cancer. More than anything, I can barely take the pain anymore. When it gets really severe – I call it a flare – it literally feels as if I’m being stabbed in my pelvis (primarily intestines and bladder), I begin running a fever (& sweat) & then my pelvic floor muscles start to spasm if it goes on long enough because it is SO intense. All of this began a year and a half ago and nothing has helped me. It literally rules my life and is really impacting it severely. Any thoughts??? I’m desperate for any insight as I’ve been to so many different doctors and can barely take this anymore.

  64. Vesna P says:

    Oh and I forgot to mention that pizza is definitely a food that drives me crazy, I can’t eat too much sugar in one sitting, more than a cup of coffee, spicy foods (which I used to love 🙁 ) or a lot of greasy food. For example, if I ate a fish and chips dinner with both fried fish and French fries, I’d be miserable! I also have been losing weight and avoid large meals as they cause more pain for a longer period of time. Please help!!

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Vesna P:

      – If the stools are fluffy, foul smelling, sticky and floating (?), this usually speaks for fat malabsorption. Liver, pancreatic, gallbladder and small intestinal disorders can cause fat malabsorption. The stool test for fat and blood tests for liver and pancreatic disorders are available.
      – Colon cancer is very rare before 50, but by having relatives with cancer you are at increased risk for various cancers. The symptoms you’ve described are not typical for colon cancer.
      – Seeing a gastroenterologist sounds as a good idea. In meantime you can try limit fatty and sugary foods but even if symptoms improve after this, you should still see a doctor.

  65. Rajeev says:

    I ate 2 cups of boiled barley on Thursday morning, I started to get mild stomach cramps at my lower abdomen from that afternoon, it’s Sunday now still feeling pain, able to pass stools and gas but this mild pain is bothering me. Do I need to consult Gastroenterologist, Please help me out

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Rajeev, barley is high in soluble fiber, which can cause a buildup of gas in the stomach and thus pain. Mild stomach cramps from abdominal bloating should resolve in few days. You may want to limit/avoid other foods high in soluble fiber, such as oats, rye, legumes, etc.

  66. Taylor says:

    I’ve been having pain on the right side of abdomen by belly button and the pain goes lower as well. Ive been having problems with my stomach for like a month and a half now I’m 20 years old. I’ve tried cutting pop and greasy foods.i will also get diharria for a few days and some days I feel like a can’t even go. But for almost 2 weeks now it’s been hurting more frequently. Today I ate a grilled chicken wrap from windys along with very few fries and immediately after I got the pain. Even to bend over it hurts and to flex my stomach like I’m pooping. I just want it to go away it’s interfering with my everyday life

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Taylor, the pain in the side lower part of the abdomen can arise from the colon (large intestine). A common cause is constipation, but this alone can have several causes. Drinking enough (not necessary “a lot”) of water and consuming some plant food with insoluble fiber (whole-grain bread, vegetables) may help prevent constipation.

      If you think that you have pain but you did not change the eating habits recently, you may want to visit a doctor.

  67. Jeff says:

    My daughter (10 years old) has been complaining of stomach and interestinal for a few years usually after eating. Ee have kept a food journal and have found no pattern to the pain. Last night she tried a small amount of straight balsamic vinegar and within minutes, her stomach (and head) starting hurting. Right now (3:40am, 7 1/2 hours after ingesting) she is sitting next to me in pain holding her stomach. Any thoughts?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Jeff, this sounds serious enough, so you may want to take her to a doctor. My first two thoughts were allergy and abdominal migraine, but I can’t really say, because you’ve mentioned only abdominal pain and headache as symptoms. It can help a lot if you help her answer these questions (because a doctor will likely ask):
      – In what time after eating does the pain appear (you said few minutes, but is it always that quick)?
      – Where exactly in the abdomen does she feel the pain (can he put a hand on the exact area or is more diffuse pain)?
      – Is the pain always associated with headache?
      – Any other symptoms, especially nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or skin rash?
      – Apart from balsamic vinegar, any other food or food ingredient that caused pain?

  68. Charles smith says:

    I have pain on my left side on and off for about 2 weeks it goes away and then comes back except the little spot that seems to hurt most of the time also bloating after eating with some pain lower left side. Any idea?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Charles, I don’t know. Constipation is the most common cause of such pain…It cold be diverticulitis, parasitic infestation…to little symptoms to say more.

  69. Nicola says:

    Hi I’m currently getting pain in my upper right abdomen mostly after eating about 20 to 30 mins after eating it hurts there makes me feel sick all the time. I’ve noticed the pain moves round to my back and every now and then pain in tip of of my right shoulder I’ve lost weight only eat small amounts got an appointment with gastroentraologist to see me for a second appointment my stomach gurgles all the time any ideas

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Such pain can be caused by gallstones.

  70. jodee says:

    I had the tail end of my pancreas remove, an my gold bladder remove,have a fatty liver and also have tape 2 diabetes.I have stomach pain upper an lower with back pain an pain in my ribs pain back in front. sometime my chest gets so tight it feels like a heart attack. My throat feel like something stuck in it.the pain is always hear an having sweating and chills no fever. going to see GI doctor in Feb.I don’t now if this is an Emergency its worst at night.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      jodee, if your symptoms are quickly worsening, you may consider it as an emergency.

  71. Joy says:

    Tuesday I eat some cook containment hamburger .Two days later I was advised to deworm myself so I purchase wormwood as soon as I took it I got stomach pain middle of my upper stomach like I had done sit-ups .All thru the day it was intermittent then at night I have done .Now it starts after I eat and moves down the right to the lower stomach.But it doesn’t when I sleep

  72. Dery Simon says:

    Hello, my name is Simon. Please i usually feel pains in my lower and upper right side of my abdomen expecially when i eat too much food.This makes me difficult to lie down but i feel good sitting down. At times this develops gas within my stomach,and this gas normally passes out from my mouth or anus to give me release. I have had ultrasound scan and endoscopy check but nothing was seen, Please what exactly is my problem.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Dery, common causes of excessive burping or gas include:
      – Eating a lot of foods high in soluble fiber, such as oats and beans
      – Eating foods high in fructose (if you have fructose malabsorption), such as appleas, pears and honey
      – Eating foods high in lactose (if you have lactose intolerance), such as milk

  73. Cynthia Henderson says:

    Have had issues with foods for many years. Was unable to eat bananas until a year or so ago. Realized that egg yolks make me nauseous and hurt my stomach while the whites do not. I do have acid reflux and take Nexium for it. I’ve also been taking motrin for years for my arthritis although I’m now down to just 800mg/day although I’m on other meds also. I’ve had food allergy tests done twice and am no longer allergic to anything I was previously which did not include bananas nor eggs. All meats, seeds and nuts make me nauseous and some hurt my stomach. Am lactose intolerant and most dairy is off my list. Beans and lentils are mostly off my list. Depending on the item, some gluten items are ok and some are not. Have seen gastroenterologist to no avail. HPylori test and Celiac test were negative. Am at a total loss of what to do and which direction to go in to eliminate the stomach issues so I can have a normal eating experience. Unfortunately, I’m a caregiver and cannot devote the time needed to try elimination diet as I could eliminate everything and yet the one thing that I can eat one day may be off my list a few days later. Very confusing!

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Meats, seeds, nuts and egg yolks are high in proteins and fats, which stay in the stomach for a longer time than carbohydrate foods. You may be able to tolerate meals with lower amount of fat.

  74. N says:

    I’m not sure if anyone reads these but I don’t know what mine could be, I have severe achy stomach pain that can last 4+hours to a few days! I often get nauseas to the point of throwing up a lot of stomach acid, night fevers happen a lot, chronic runs when I’ve eaten bad seems to get worse if I’m eating junk food, I feel like I may also have too much stomach acid, any thoughts?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Please go to a doctor. Such symptoms can occur in gallstones or gallbladder inflammation, gastritis or pancreatitis, for example.

  75. Dia says:

    I have been tested for H pylori and results came back negative, blood test for several areas and everything came back normal. I’m on FOODMAPS which have helped for the most part. Anytime I eat anything that consumes butter I get extreme bloat and upper stomach discomfort until I take tums then within 30-45 minutes relief kicks in. This problem came all of the sudden about 3 months ago. My GB was removed 2 years ago. Waiting on the next test…in the mean time any suggestions?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      By bloating you mean visible abdominal distension (or not)? Where is the pain – in the middle or on the right, left?

  76. Andrea says:

    I had steak last night quite late 10pm
    It wasn’t a big meal but I mentioned at the time the steak was a little fatty.
    I opened my bowels 3 times normal stool but dark between midnight & 3am then at 4am I had trapped wind, gripping & cramps which have continued for over 12 hours in different severity! I feel fine in myself other than not being to sleep because of the gripping. I actually tried to make myself sick thought it might relieve it but nothing came up not even bile!
    I do suffer from Mild IBS
    Is this a flare up caused by the beef or something else?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Maybe something in that meal did not agree with you.

  77. Cathy Burch says:

    I have cramps in lower abdomen, which feels like gas pains, after eating steak. This has been going on for 3 days. Also had temperature of 100.4. This has happened before after eating steak.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Please, go to a doctor; it could be an internal infection.

  78. Miss J says:

    For 3 days I have been ill. It started with fever, nausea, aching all over then vomiting. That lasted for about 9hrs. No diahrea. The nausea has continued with acute pain right under my sternum whenever I have ANYTHING. (Including water) For the first time ever, I havent had a bowl
    movement. I have an appetite but can’t take the pain.
    I’m 54, no food allergies and until now, in excellent health. The nausea, lethargy, and pain have kept me in a bed the whole time now. The pain in my upper stomach is always there. As is the nausea. Any thoughts

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Such pain and nausea can be from a severe gastritis or peptic ulcer. I strongly suggest you to get this checked.

  79. Lindsey says:

    Sunday afternoon I started to feel sick to my stomach and that night I had horrible, horrible gas and really bad upper abdominal pain and bloating. The next day, Monday, in the morning and afternoon, I had a couple loose stools (not diarrhea) with the same horrible smell. That night, the diarrhea started. I find myself Thursday night still with uncontrollable diarrhea and upper abdominal pain. The pain burns and at times comes in waves, but usually comes on worse 2 hours after eating. Today I only ate once at 5pm, and at 7pm I started hurting and came the diarrhea. I’m taking a pain pill for intestinal pain that doesn’t help (why am I still taking it?) and antidiarrheal meds every 4 hours, which doesn’t help that much either. What’s going on? 2 weeks ago I had gallbladder pain for 3 straight days but I’m not sure this is related due to the pain not being the same spot.
    Symptoms: diarrhea, upper abdominal pain, nausea that comes with the pain

    1. Jan Modric says:

      I strongly suggest you to check this with a doctor. All the symptoms may or may not be related to the gallbladder. If the stools are floating and sticky, they can be from fat malabsorption (steathorrhea), which can result from a gallstone that blocks the flow of the bile or pancreatic juice into the intestine. So, the problem may involve gallstones and pancreatitis.

      1. Lindsey says:

        Went to a doctor. I told him what was going on, felt around my abdomen area, listened to the area with his stethoscope. He thought maybe it was hepatitis? but I had no symptoms, so he said it was an intestinal infection. He gave me a script for an antibiotic, another pain med for abdominal pain, and a probiotic. We’ll see what happens in the next couple days. If it doesn’t improve, I’ll be seeing my women’s health doctor on Thursday and will bring it up with her. If it is gallbladder, she will test me for it for sure.

  80. Susan says:

    Yesterday I ate a lots of nuts after lunch as a “healthy” snack. By 5 pm my abdomen was so bloated and painful that I just laid on the couch. Most of the pain was in the middle to right hand quadrant. Felt more like gas so around 9 pm I took some tums. Was able to move the gas a little and by 11 pm the pain had decreased enough to fall asleep. Upper right still tender this morning. The pain was worse than labor. Do you think gall bladder or maybe just the nuts?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      I can’t say which, but nuts can cause constipation, which can cause severe pain.

  81. Eriel Hon says:

    I can sometimes eat anything and don’t have problems. But then the next meal I eat in the same day will lead to bloating, cramping, pain, and the explosive diarrehea. I may then experience mild constipation the next day. I have a journal and have not found any foods that make a pattern. It is random but frequent. The one thing that us consistent is that at least once a day I experience done degree of bloating, abdominal discomfort and cramping and flatulence. Any ideas would be helpful.

    1. Jan Modric says:

      Such problems, if food related, can be triggered by:
      – Milk (if you have lactose intolerance)
      – Foods high in fructose (honey, apples, pears, mangoes) or polyols, such as sorbitol, maltitol or xylitol (prunes, sugar-free chewing gum)

  82. Rich says:

    I have had persistent dull pain in my lower left abdomen. Occasionally pelvic pain as well and it worsens shortly after eating. Haven’t had any issues with constipation or diarrhea. Just been eating soup for the last few days, but it hasn’t subsided. Any thoughts?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      I suggest you go to the doctor. Such pain does not sound normal to me.

      1. Rich says:

        I am thinking it’s an ulcer, but maybe I am wrong.

        1. Jan Modric says:

          Pain in the left lower abdomen and pelvis could be from diverticulitis, for example. Ulcers usually occur in the stomach and duodenum and cause pain in the upper middle abdomen. Again, if pain is so bad you can’t eat normally and it doesn’t seem to be just from constipation, go to a doctor.

  83. Megan Martin says:

    I have lower left abdomen pain after I eat greasy or heavy foods and the pain radiates around to my back and it sends sharp pains up. I haven’t had any problems with my bowl movements so should I be concerned?

    1. Jan Modric says:

      I don’t know. If worried, visit a doctor.

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