Almost everyone has overeaten at some point in their life. When this happens, it often leads to fullness, nausea, and indigestion. However, if you’re feeling stomach pain after eating average amounts of food, it may be a sign of a medical condition.
Experiencing pain after eating is usually not a concern, even if it occurs occasionally, but persistent postprandial pain can be a symptom of several digestive disorders.
Postprandial pain also called pain after eating, is upper abdominal or stomach pain that occurs after eating. Many reasons can cause your stomach pain after eating, from overindulging to inflammation of the pancreas (or pancreatitis), which is located behind the stomach.
If the pain starts after you eat, you should speak with a medical specialist. It could be that your symptoms require immediate medical care.
A person can prevent postprandial pain by eating a healthy, balanced diet with vegetables and fresh fruits. Avoiding spicy or fatty foods and reducing caffeine and sugary drinks may also help.
We’ve listed some common reasons why you might have postprandial pain. Continue reading to learn more.
1. Food allergy
Many people experience food allergies that can result in never-ceasing gastrointestinal symptoms, including bloating, gas, cramping, and diarrhoea. Common food allergens are; tree nuts, peanuts, milk, soy, wheat, shellfish, etc. No matter how these conditions can go undiagnosed for years if symptoms are minor.
2. Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)
IBD refers to conditions like Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, resulting in inflammation of the intestinal tract. These conditions are believed to manifest as a result of an abnormal immune response, with symptoms such as loss of appetite, persistent diarrhoea, cramping, blood in the stool, and fatigue.
3. Indigestion or eating too much
Having pain after eating is not always caused by a food allergy or chronic disease. Before thinking your pain is due to an allergy, consider what you eat first. Answer these questions yourself; Did you eat a tremendous amount of food? Did you eat spicy, fried, or acidic foods?
If there’s a yes to any of the questions above, just know that certain foods, mainly if consumed in large quantities, are hard to digest and can even lead to adverse symptoms for anyone.
4. Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
Experiencing postprandial pain higher than the stomach and in the upper abdomen or throat may simply mean that you’re suffering from acid reflux, which might lead to a more chronic form of acid reflux, known as GERD.
You may feel nausea, a burning sensation in the throat, heartburn, or pain while swallowing.
5. Irritable bowel syndrome (I.B.S.)
It is a common disorder that affects the colon (large intestine). The condition can cause abdominal cramping, constipation, diarrhoea, gas, and other negative gastrointestinal symptoms. I.B.S is a chronic condition that requires managing the symptoms, usually through dietary changes.
Good to note:
Different things could cause you pain after eating. You may have heartburn or indigestion, which could even be treated using over-the-counter (O.T.C.) medications.
You may have a chronic condition where you have persistent pain for several weeks and continue for a long time, even after lifestyle and diet changes. You should consult a doctor soonest.