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5 Main Causes Of Anxiety After Eating & How To Cope

Anxiety disorders have emotional and physical symptoms that may also manifest in anxiety after eating or anxiety upper stomach pain. Continue to read more about how to get rid of anxiety after eating.

Anxiety After Eating & Stomach Anxiety Treatment

When you experience anxiety after eating, it is often an indication that your anxiety is being triggered by physical sensations. There is no single cause of feeling anxiety after eating; it might be a combination of factors. It might be caused by mental health issues or physical problems. Or it may be something entirely else! Whatever the cause, you must understand why you are having anxiety after eating or anxiety causing stomach pain.

Anxiety is a widespread phenomenon that affects various behaviors. While anxiety can be a mental health problem by itself, it is also connected to problematic eating-related health outcomes and behaviors. Anxiety has repeatedly been connected to obesity and to a variety of other eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, and binge eating as well as to the sub-clinical forms of these disorders and weight concerns.

According to research, interventions that help individuals to better regulate and cope with anxiety and stomach issues could be one potential pathway to reducing eating disorders and obesity in the population. [1]

What is Anxiety Disorder?

The word “anxiety” can indicate a number of different things. We all experience anxiety occasionally, and the word “anxiety” can be used to describe that feeling simply. However, when we use the word anxiety in a medical context, it actually refers to anxiety disorder. Some less frequent conditions are included under anxiety. These include panic disorders and phobias. However, generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is the most prevalent. In the US, a generalized anxiety disorder may affect four to five out of every 100 persons.

According to the National Institute on Mental Health, periodic anxiety is a standard component of life. When faced with a challenge at work, before a test, or before making a crucial decision, you could experience anxiety. However, anxiety disorders involve more than just passing apprehension or terror.

It’s critical to get anxiety disorder treatment as soon as possible since, for someone with an anxiety condition, the anxiety does not go away and can worsen over time. The symptoms might affect daily tasks like work performance, academic progress, and interpersonal connections. Generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and various phobia-related disorders are only a few of the several types of anxiety disorders.

People with a generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) display excessive anxiety or worry, most days for at least 6 months, about many things such as personal health, work, social interactions, and everyday routine life circumstances. Fear and anxiety can cause significant problems in areas of their life, such as social interactions, school, and work.

Stomach Anxiety Symptoms

Have you ever wondered why you feel “butterflies in stomach anxiety” before doing a demanding task? Or why do you get a “tight feeling in upper stomach anxiety” after an argument? One of the most prevalent signs of stress and worry is stomach pain.

Common stress-related anxiety stomach symptoms and conditions include:

  • Indigestion
  • Stomach cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Loss of appetite
  • Unnatural hunger
  • Nausea
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Peptic ulcers

When you have one of these anxiety symptoms stomach conditions, any one of these can have a negative influence on your quality of life. If you have stomach cramps or indigestion, you may become scared of these upset stomach anxiety symptoms, limiting where and what you eat, which may have an influence on your social life.

The effects of anxiety and stomach pain can manifest in unique ways and all over the body. Other anxiety upset stomach symptoms include:

  • Upset stomach after eating
  • Acid reflux
  • Heartburn
  • Bloating
  • Depression
  • Anxiousness or racing thoughts
  • Excessive sleeping or inability to sleep
  • Restlessness
  • Mood swings

On rare occasions, stomach ache anxiety symptoms may indicate something more serious at play. As such, it’s good to be alert. Some of the stomach issues and anxiety signs may include:

  • Blood in the stool
  • Weight loss
  • Black tarry stools
  • Abnormal lab values (a sign of anemia)
  • Vomiting

Anxiety Fact Sheet

Anxiety Overview

A mental health condition marked by intense feelings of worry, anxiety, or fear that interferes with daily activities. Panic attacks, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder are a few examples of anxiety disorders.

The inability to put aside worry, restlessness, and stress that is out of proportion to the severity of the incident are among the symptoms. Counseling or medication, including antidepressants, are used as forms of treatment.

Anxiety Symptoms

  • Behavioral: Hypervigilance, irritability, or restlessness.
  • Cognitive: Lack of concentration, racing thoughts, or unwanted thoughts.
  • Whole body: Fatigue or sweating
  • Also common:  Excessive worry, angor animi (strong perception that he/she is dying), fear, insomnia, nausea, palpitations, or trembling

Anxiety Treatment

  • Support Group: A place where those pursuing the same disease or objective, such as weight loss or depression, can receive counseling and exchange experiences.
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy: A conversation treatment that aimed to change the negative attitudes, actions, and feelings connected to psychiatric discomfort.
  • Counseling Psychology: A subfield of psychology that handles issues with the self that are connected to work, school, family, and social life.
  • Anger Management: To reduce destructive emotional outbursts, practice mindfulness, coping skills, and trigger avoidance.
  • Psychoeducation: Mental health education that also helps individuals feel supported, validated, and empowered
  • Family Therapy: Psychological counseling that improves family communication and conflict resolution.

Anxiety Statistics

It’s critical to understand anxiety in stomach how to get rid of it. Anxiety, in its most basic form, is an excessive feeling of worry. Anxiety disorders are the most common group of mental disorders. There is mounting evidence demonstrating the importance of nutrition in the development and progression of mental disorders such as depression; however, less is known about the role of nutrition in anxiety disorders.

Anxiety disorders exert a significant burden at both an individual and societal level. Individuals with anxiety disorders report a high degree of psychological distress, significant disability, and a reduction in quality of life. The presence of an anxiety disorder is associated with higher use of both primary care, emergency room visits, and specialist healthcare services. These disorders are also highly prevalent. The national comorbidities study established the lifetime prevalence of any anxiety disorder at 31.2%, the highest of any category of psychiatric illnesses.

6.8 million

Generalized anxiety disorder affects 6.8 million adults or 3.1% of the U.S. population, yet only 43.2% are receiving treatment.

Source: National Institute on Mental Health

19 million

19 million adults experience specific phobias, making it the most common anxiety disorder in America.  

Source: ADAA2020

28.8 Million

9% of the U.S. population, or 28.8 million Americans, will have an eating disorder in their lifetime.

Source: NIMH

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Generalized anxiety disorder and depression can both have emotional and physical symptoms that may also manifest in anxiety after eating or anxiety upper stomach pain.
Generalized anxiety disorder and depression can both have emotional and physical symptoms that may also manifest in anxiety after eating or anxiety upper stomach pain. Seek anxiety stomach ache remedy from a mental health professional for best treatment results.

Does Anxiety Make Your Stomach Hurt? Anxiety Eating

Do you feel anxiety after eating? Sometimes anxiety symptoms come on suddenly. You briefly exhibit a sense of serenity and relaxation. Then, a recognizable strain creeps up into your chest. Your hands start to perspire, you feel lightheaded and faint, and you have trouble breathing.

After experiencing anxiety for a while, you could begin to see a pattern. When you come across certain triggers, such as an important business meeting, a busy schedule, or irritation in your partner’s voice, you could notice your mood quickly shifts toward anxiety.

Some people experience anxiety after eating, tight stomach muscles anxiety, and a heartbeat in stomach anxiety sensation.

Finding effective techniques to deal with those you can’t avoid and learning to avoid common triggers are the usual first steps in managing anxiety symptoms and nervous stomach anxiety signs.

Of course, eating is a trigger that cannot be avoided. But when it comes to anxiety after eating, the situation is typically more complex.

Why Do I Get Anxiety When I Eat? 5 Reasons For Having Anxiety Stomach Issues Or Upset Stomach From Anxiety

While it may appear to be an unusual link, your stomach and brain have a close relationship. As a result, anytime anything psychologically drains you, you may feel the effects in your stomach, such as an empty feeling in stomach anxiety symptom. You can adopt a proactive approach to stress management. By doing so, you can avoid anxiety and upset stomach or anxiety causing stomach issues while also safeguarding your overall health.

1. Anxiety Stomach Problems & Reactive Hypoglycemia 

After eating, and typically within a few hours, you will have low blood sugar if you have reactive hypoglycemia. It’s common for an increase in insulin production to be followed by a dip in blood sugar, which can leave you feeling agitated, agitated, and even a little bit confused.

Reactive hypoglycemia is frequently brought on by processed carbohydrates and foods high in sugar, but it can also be brought on by drinking alcohol or caffeine on an empty stomach. Symptoms of reactive hypoglycemia may include confusion, shakiness, and anxiety stomach cramps. A person can reduce the risk of stomach hurts from anxiety and reactive hypoglycemia by taking dietary measures, such as eating small, frequent meals and limiting the intake of sugary foods.

Other physical modifications that resemble anxiety feeling in stomach may also be noticed including:

  • Dizziness
  • Shakiness
  • A racing heart
  • Increased sweating

2. Anxiety About Eating & Food Triggers

Are you having anxiety while eating? or does it feel like you have anxiety pit in stomach? Certain foods can provoke stomach spasms anxiety symptoms even if they don’t directly affect your blood sugar.

Some potential triggers of stomach pain and anxiety include:

  • Cheese, cured meats, and other fermented foods contain the neurotransmitter histamine
  • Caffeine, which can disrupt sleep and worsen anxiety and stomach problems
  • Trans fats (partially hydrogenated oils)
  • White flour, sugar, and other refined carbs can cause adrenaline spikes that trigger panicky or stomach anxiety pain
  • Alcohol
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3. Why Do I Get Anxiety After I Eat? Allergies and Food Sensitivities 

Food allergies can involve symptoms that range from mild to severe, and many can resemble those of an oncoming anxiety or panic attack.

You might notice:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Lightheadedness
  • Tightness or swelling in your throat
  • Tingling or numbness in your mouth
  • Nausea or stomach pain
  • Rapid heartbeat

These symptoms may not start to manifest for an hour or two after eating, but they can start to manifest very quickly. They frequently become active after exercise. Food sensitivities, which are distinct from allergies, are common. Typical sensitivity sources include:

  • Gluten
  • Dairy
  • Nightshade vegetables
  • Sulfites and other food additives

Another important tool for determining whether these stomach pains from anxiety symptoms are related to particular foods is a food diary. More information on possible allergy causes may be gained by keeping track of symptoms for a few weeks. Severe food allergies can cause anaphylaxis, a life-threatening illness that needs immediate medical attention. If you experience any of the following anxiety symptoms soon after eating, contact emergency healthcare:

  • Sudden low blood pressure
  • Racing pulse
  • Fainting or dizziness
  • Difficulty breathing or swallowing

4. Anxiety When Eating & Lapsing Back Into Old Eating Habits

You might experience anxiety and stomach bloating or stomach ulcer anxiety if you’re trying to change specific eating patterns or behaviors. Imagine that after 3 weeks of eliminating red meat from your diet, you still crave a cheeseburger. You decide that one burger won’t ruin your long-term health objectives and go to your favorite restaurant to have one.

You suddenly feel irritated and anxious after eating. You think, “I was doing so well.” “What if I start craving red meat constantly once more? What if I’m unable to abandon it this time?”

5. Feeling Of Anxiety After Eating & Previous Negative Experiences With Food

The tightness in stomach anxiety feelings is frequently triggered by unpleasant memories, and food-related experiences are no exception. Say you were eating chicken tikka masala at your favorite Indian restaurant when you and your boyfriend got into a heated argument. Every time you eat that particular dish or even a different meal at the same place, that feeling of tension and subconsciously holding stomach anxiety can resurface.

If you had food illness from the sandwich buffet at work or choked on popcorn on a date, it makes sense that you might be hesitant to eat those items again. Numerous sensations that occur during eating might also induce anxiety. Even though they only occur occasionally, feeling full, little indigestion or heartburn, or tightness in your chest after a substantial bite can all contribute to feeling uneasy after eating.

These “warning signs” may not actually indicate increased worry or stress, but they may still leave you feeling anxious — especially if you start to feel anxious about feeling anxious.

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Anxiety And Eating Disorders or Anxiety Not Eating

People who struggle with eating disorders frequently suffer anxiety related to food and sleeping on stomach anxiety. Even while it isn’t always a sign of an eating disorder, anxiety after meals can occasionally point to bad eating habits. Other crucial indications of an eating disorder include:

  • Anxiety around mealtimes, especially when eating with others
  • Guilt or other distress after eating foods you consider “bad” or unhealthy
  • Nervousness or guilt if you believe you’ve eaten too much
  • Anxiety after eating that persists until you exercise, skip your next meal, or purge
  • Extreme choosiness about foods you eat

Many complex factors contribute to eating disorders, including:

  • Low self-esteem
  • Body image issues
  • Weight stigma and bullying
  • Trauma
  • Family history
The We level Up Florida mental health treatment plan addresses the physical aspects of chemical imbalances through anxiety therapy, this includes recognizing the root cause of anxiety after eating and underlying mental health problems.
The We level Up Florida mental health treatment plan addresses the physical aspects of chemical imbalances through anxiety therapy, this includes recognizing the root cause of anxiety after eating and underlying mental health problems.

Anxiety Weight Loss Despite Eating

Anxiety symptoms can alter your metabolism, cause you to eat less, move more, have different bowel habits, and have more muscle tension, all of which may result in weight loss.

Shortness Of Breath After Eating Anxiety

People with issues like heart disease, digestive issues, or anxiety disorders frequently experience breathing problems after eating. Inconvenient respiratory sensations are referred to as dyspnea, which is another name for it.

Anxiety Nausea Can’t Eat? Anxiety And Not Eating

Your body undergoes emotional and psychological changes as a result of anxiety to assist you to cope with the stress. You may lose interest in food as a result of these changes, which frequently affect the stomach and digestive system. If stress is the cause, once you start to feel more at ease, your hunger normally returns.

How to Handle An Anxiety Eating Disorder? Anxiety And Eating

How to get rid of anxiety stomach aches? It might be challenging to deal with disordered eating on your own, but asking for assistance is never shameful. A therapist can provide understanding, and private assistance if you frequently feel anxious after eating and grow more and more focused on food, dieting, and the form and size of your body.

A Book to Help: ‘Eat To Beat Depression And Anxiety’

A ground-breaking guide that includes a six-week eating plan to get you started eating for better mental health, as well as a groundbreaking prescription for treating depression and anxiety and boosting brain function.

In order to increase brain-cell health and growth, reduce inflammation, and foster a healthy microbiome—all of which contribute to our mental well-being—Dr. Ramsey distills the most recent research on nutrition and the brain into practical advice you can use right away. He examines the 12 vitamins and minerals that are most important for your body and brain as well as which anti-inflammatory foods are best for your gut.

You can choose meals to support your road to complete mental health with confidence if you adhere to the strategies Dr. Ramsey uses with his patients.

What To Eat For Anxiety? Eating For Anxiety & Anxiety Stomach Pain Relief

How to eat when you have anxiety? The foods to eat for anxiety are whole grains, such as oats, quinoa, whole-grain breads, and whole-grain cereals, which are high in complex carbs. Avoid simple carbs, such as those found in sugary foods and beverages. Take in a lot of water. Your mood can be impacted by even minor dehydration.

How To Stop Anxiety Eating? Anxiety And Binge Eating

You can take measures to manage desires when unfavorable emotions pose a risk of motivating emotional eating. Try these suggestions to help you quit emotional eating:

  • Maintain a food diary. Record your eating habits, including what you eat, how much, when, how you feel, and how hungry you are. You can see patterns over time that indicate a relationship between mood and eating.
  • Become stress-free. Try a stress-reduction method like yoga, meditation, or deep breathing if you believe that stress is a factor in your emotional eating.
  • Check your hunger levels. Do you feel physical or emotional hunger? If you last ate a few hours ago and your stomach isn’t growling, you probably aren’t hungry. Allow the craving to subside.
  • Get assistance. If you don’t have a strong support system, emotional eating is more likely to become your downfall. Count on your loved ones and friends, or think about joining a support group.
  • Be bored less. Distract yourself and replace your unhealthy activity with snacking when you’re not hungry. Visit a friend, go on a stroll, watch a movie, play with your cat, listen to music, read, or browse the internet.
  • Remove the temptation. Don’t keep comfort foods that are difficult to refuse at home. Additionally, defer your trip to the grocery shop until your emotions are under control if you are feeling angry or depressed.

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We Level Up Dual Diagnosis Treatment

The exact definition of dual diagnosis (also referred to as co-occurring disorders) can differ between institutions.  However, it is generally described as the specific treatment of someone who has been diagnosed with multiple mental health disorders at the same time.

A thorough mental health analysis identifies possibilities for anxiety after eating or eating disorder treatment. Meeting with mental health counselors and medical care providers means access to behavioral therapy and medication treatment.

At our dual diagnosis treatment center, We Level Up Florida can implement the highest quality of care. We recognize the fragile complexities of how mental health disorders can influence others and sometimes result in a vicious cycle of unhealthy habits.

It can be challenging to accept that you may be living with a mental illness, but once it is properly diagnosed and treated, treating the presenting case of the co-occurring disorder can be magnitudes easier. Only a properly trained medical professional can diagnose these underlying conditions. If you believe you are suffering from anxiety disorders, we urge you to seek a qualified treatment center to begin your journey to recovery. Call We Level Up today. Each call is private and confidential.

Top 10 Can Stomach Issues Cause Anxiety? FAQs

  1. What does anxiety stomach pain feel like?

    When you have anxiety after eating, you may feel cramping, churning, tightness, or knots in the stomach. “Butterflies” in the stomach feeling. Shivering, shaking, or twitching of muscles.

  2. How to stop stomach pain from anxiety? How to calm stomach anxiety?

    A nervous stomach can often be treated with home and natural remedies, as well as lifestyle changes. But when your anxiety is severe and affecting your daily life, getting professional mental health help is crucial.

  3. Can anxiety cause stomach issues? Can anxiety make your stomach hurt?

    Absolutely. Stomach discomfort and other gastrointestinal problems are frequently caused by stress and excessive worry.

  4. Does anxiety cause stomach pain? Does anxiety cause stomach issues?

    Anxiety also causes the stress hormone cortisol to be released. This leads the body to create more stomach acid. Its acidity irritates the esophageal lining, leading to abdominal discomfort, anxiety after eating, nausea, vomiting, and in severe cases, stress-induced ulcers.

  5. Why do I wake up with anxiety in my stomach?

    Morning anxiety in the stomach has a biological cause. Cortisol often called the “stress hormone,” is higher during the first hour after waking for people experiencing anxiety and stress.

  6. Can anxiety cause stomach problems? Can anxiety cause upset stomach?

    Yes. Common stress-related gut symptoms and conditions include stomach cramps, diarrhea, constipation, and loss of appetite.

  7. How to get rid of knot in stomach anxiety? How to stop anxiety stomach aches?

    Seek the help of a therapist who specializes in anxiety disorders. It’s often too difficult to deal with chronic worry and complicated anxiety after eating on your own. 

  8. Why does anxiety make my stomach hurt? Why do I feel anxiety in my stomach?

    When you are worried, some of your body’s hormones and chemicals enter your digestive tract and interfere with digestion. They harm your gut flora (microorganisms that dwell in your digestive system and promote digestion) and reduce antibody synthesis, causing anxiety after eating and stomach anxiety symptoms.

  9. Can a stomach ulcer cause anxiety? Can anxiety cause stomach ulcers?

    From numerous studies, it’s pretty clear that anxiety and stress often serve as a backdrop to stomach ulcers. Your body’s natural response to anxiety also increases stomach acid, a source of ulcers.

  10. Can anxiety cause stomach cramps? Can anxiety cause stomach pains?

    Yes. When stress and anxieties are not managed, high amounts of cortisol can erode and damage the digestive system lining. If you’re concerned about how stress and anxiety are affecting your well-being, schedule an appointment with a healthcare provider.

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Search We Level Up FL Anxiety After Eating Mental Health Topics & Resources

[1] Hussenoeder FS, Conrad I, Engel C, Zachariae S, Zeynalova S, Glaesmer H, Hinz A, Witte V, Tönjes A, Löffler M, Stumvoll M, Villringer A, Riedel-Heller SG. Analyzing the link between anxiety and eating behavior as a potential pathway to eating-related health outcomes. Sci Rep. 2021 Jul 19;11(1):14717. DOI: 10.1038/s41598-021-94279-1. PMID: 34282257; PMCID: PMC8289991. In relation to the topic: “Anxiety After Eating”

[2] U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) (

[3] Depression Treatment » Drug Alcohol Addiction Rehab In relation to the topic: “Anxiety After Eating”

[4]  Bandelow B, Michaelis S, Wedekind D. Treatment of anxiety disorders. Dialogues Clin Neurosci. 2017 Jun;19(2):93-107. doi: 10.31887/DCNS.2017.19.2/bbandelow. PMID: 28867934; PMCID: PMC5573566.

[5] NIMH – In relation to the topic: “Anxiety After Eating”

[6] Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors – National Center for Biotechnology InformationU.S. National Library of Medicine

[7] ‘Anxiety Disorders’ – National Institute Of Mental Health ( In relation to the topic: “Anxiety After Eating”

[8] Psychopharmacology of anxiety disorders – National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine

[9]  Products – Data Briefs – Number 379 – September 2020 ( Depression – National Institute of Mental Health

[10] Coping with Stress – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention