What are the most common causes of bloating and nausea?

The most common causes of bloating and nausea are indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome, and lactose intolerance. Indigestion, or dyspepsia, is caused by eating certain foods as well as digestive conditions that are already present. Irritable bowel syndrome occurs when the colon is irritated and can only be controlled through dietary intervention and a change in lifestyle habits. Lactose intolerance is caused by the consumption of dairy products, and immediate symptoms often include bloating and nausea. In most cases, these conditions can be treated at home and without prescription drugs or a doctor's visit.

Indigestion is descriptive of a series of symptoms that occur during or after eating. Besides bloating and nausea, the other symptoms that accompany indigestion are upper abdominal pain and heartburn. People who experience indigestion often complain of feeling fuller than usual during and sometimes after a meal. It is often okay to wait until symptoms are reduced or eliminated. However, going to the hospital is a must if a person experiences shortness of breath or chest pain.

Irritable bowel syndrome occurs when the brain is unable to communicate effectively with the intestinal tract. Excessive stress, chemicals, and hormones often disrupt the messages sent between the brain and the intestinal tract, resulting in muscle spasms. The spasms often lead to nausea and diarrhea or constipation, which makes the bowel movement uncomfortable. Irritable bowel syndrome is sometimes genetic, but in many cases it is the result of weak intestines caused by an immune system disorder. Refraining from foods that increase the chances of irritable puffer syndrome, such as beans and other gas-producing foods, can often help.

People who are lactose intolerant often become aware of their condition when they experience bloating and nausea after eating a meal that contains dairy products. Lactose, which is the sugar found in dairy, cannot be properly broken down by the body if it does not produce the enzyme lactase. Those who are lactose intolerant do not produce lactase and experience cramps, diarrhea, and gas, along with bloating and nausea. The body can also temporarily stop producing lactase due to the stomach flu. The best way to treat lactose intolerance is often to avoid dairy products and eat dairy-free, lactose-free products.

Persistent symptoms of bloating and nausea should be cause for concern and warrant medical attention. This is especially true when diet and lifestyle changes do not significantly mitigate symptoms. Doctors can help rule out other conditions that may be the underlying causes of indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome, and lactose intolerance.

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