10 Causes of Indigestion

By james
Reviewed: Dr. Mera
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Indigestion, upset stomach, and dyspepsia are interchangeable names that are used to describe a conglomerate of symptoms. Some of the characteristic hallmarks of this symptom are bloating, abdominal discomfort, burning sensation in the upper abdomen, and a sensation of fullness. It is important to say that dyspepsia is not a medical condition on its own.

The importance of a healthy digestive system is often understated. If we can’t get enough nutrition from our food then we can fall ill, so it is very important we keep the digestive system in good health. This is often achievable through eating a healthy diet, but complications can arise.

One such complication is indigestion. It is an uncomfortable symptom that can be agonizing in some cases. Although indigestion can be very difficult to put up with, it is often avoidable and is usually fairly short lived.

However, it can also be a sign of a potentially serious underlying problem. Below are 10 causes of indigestion to look out for.

Cause Of Indigestion #1: Smoking

It was only relatively recently that attitudes toward smoking changed. It was considered perfectly acceptable socially and its impact on our health was also often downplayed. We are far more aware of the risks of smoking nowadays, however, and it is not considered to be nearly as acceptable as it used to be.

It is well known that smoking causes a great deal of damage to our lungs, but that is not the only part of the body it affects. Among other body parts, it can also affect the digestive system and can cause indigestion and other problems. There are numerous other reasons why people should consider giving up smoking.


Cause Of Indigestion #2: Overeating

Food can be so delicious and enjoyable at times that it can be difficult to say no to more. This is one of the reasons for obesity as the extra calories get converted into fat. Eating too much can also lead to some short-term problems, including indigestion.

Cramming too much food into our stomachs can give the stomach too much to work on. It becomes difficult for the body to digest what is there, while the production of gases in an already full stomach can also cause problems. It is generally a much better idea to eat smaller amounts of food throughout the day.

Cause Of Indigestion #3: Spicy Foods

Sometimes it is not so much the quantity of food that causes indigestion, but the type of food you have eaten. Certain types of food are difficult for our digestive system to deal with and can cause us some discomfort. It varies from person to person but it is generally a good idea to avoid foods that don’t agree with you, no matter how much you might enjoy them.

Spicy foods, in particular, can cause indigestion. Also, caffeine can irritate the digestive system, meaning that tea, coffee, and other caffeinated beverages are a problem. Carbonated beverages will sometimes cause indigestion while, unfortunately, chocolate can also cause some discomfort.


Cause Of Indigestion #4: Fatty Foods

A balanced diet is very important for our health and fat is part of that balance. It is important to stick to healthy fats such as olive oil and avoid fried food in large quantities as it can cause many health issues in the long term.

In addition to possible health hazards such as obesity and blocked arteries, fat can also be difficult for us to break down. We can handle it in small amounts but our digestive systems will begin to struggle when there is too much. Bear in mind to eat it in moderation and you should be just fine.

Cause Of Indigestion #5: Ulcers

Ulcers can occur pretty much anywhere in the body and many of us will have had them in our mouths at some point. They can also occur in the stomach and they can be very uncomfortable to put up with. Peptic ulcers can cause indigestion, while they can also cause a range of other unwelcome symptoms.

It is not easy to treat stomach ulcers, but it can be done. Treatment often involves being careful with the diet. Peptic ulcers should always be evaluated by a healthcare professional to prevent further complications.


Cause Of Indigestion #6: Anxiety

Too much stress is not good for us. It can have a profound negative impact on our mental well-being while our physical well-being can also suffer. It can even have an effect on our digestive system, which is largely controlled by certain hormones and the hormonal balance can be affected by anxiety.

Anxiety can cause the digestive system to become irritated and this can lead to indigestion. Because anxiety can have such a negative impact on our overall well-being, it is something that you should address. If you are having difficulties with anxiety, you should seek professional help.

Cause Of Indigestion #7: Constipation

The longer our food stays in our digestive system, the more nutrition we can absorb from it. As such, our food passes through fairly slowly but it is possible for it to pass through too slowly. In such instances, our stools will become hard and dry and our digestive system can become backed up.

Constipation can also be very irritating to the digestive system and cause indigestion. While constipation will usually pass in time, it is something that you should get checked if it lasts for too long. Being constipated for too long can be dangerous, but there are medications that can help.


Cause Of Indigestion #8: Gastritis

The lining of our stomach helps to make sure food remains in the digestive system, while it also helps protect the rest of the body from our digestive juices. It can become inflamed in a condition known as gastritis, and gastritis can be the result of a wide range of causes.

Gastritis can be long or short lived, but it will often result in indigestion. Other symptoms include nausea, vomiting, loss of appetitive, and bloating. Depending on the underlying cause, gastritis can be treated reasonably easily. A change in lifestyle, particularly eating a healthy diet, can also be necessary in some cases.

Cause Of Indigestion #9: Cancer

Cancer can affect our internal organs, and our digestive system is no exception. Cancer of the stomach or similar can lead to some very unwelcome symptoms, including indigestion. Stomach cancer is a very serious condition and usually difficult to diagnose early.

There are many other possible causes of indigestion, though, so there is no need to panic if you do experience the symptom. If you do feel as though something is wrong, however, then you should get it checked. The chances of making a full recovery from cancer are much higher when you catch it early, so regular checks are advisable.

Cause Of Indigestion #10: Celiac Disease

Gluten is a type of protein that is commonly found in grains. As such, it is very common in food as it is found in bread, pastries, and pastas. For the vast majority of us, gluten is not a problem but there is a small percentage of people that cannot say the same. For many people, it is something to be avoided.

Some people are unable to process gluten in a condition that is known as celiac disease. It causes a range of unwelcome symptoms, including indigestion. Patients with celiac disease will often need to be very careful about what they eat lest they experience unwanted symptoms.


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