Do You Suffer from a Rumbling Stomach After Eating?

Photo credit: Bigstockphoto
Photo credit: Bigstockphoto

Do you experience the sensation of your stomach rumbling after eating a meal? This common problem can be frustrating for the thousands of people who suffer with it every day. The scientific name for this condition is borborygmus which is a word used to describe the sound made by gas and air moving through the intestinal tract. Some people who experience stomach rumbling after eating also experience abdominal bloating and distension, burping, and the passage of large amount of flatus. This series of symptoms can be caused by a variety of medical conditions which may include:

Lactose intolerance

Lactose intolerance is a common condition caused by the inability to digest the milk sugar lactose. Because lactose is undigested, it can be acted upon by bacteria normally present in the gut, resulting in gas production which can manifest as flatulence and borborygmus. Other symptoms of lactose intolerance include abdominal discomfort and diarrhea. Because lactose is found in milk products, avoiding food and drink that contains milk usually results in improvement in symptoms.


This is a relatively common condition that occurs frequently in anxious individuals who swallow too much air while eating. A person suffering from aerophagia may be completely unaware that they’re swallowing air while dining and may manifest with such symptoms as stomach rumbling after eating, flatulence, belching, and abdominal bloating.

Irritable bowel syndrome

This is a relatively common, functional disorder of the bowel with no known cause. Symptoms include borborygmus, abdominal discomfort, bloating, and changes in bowel habits. An affected person may experience constipation and diarrhea or a combination of both.

Functional dyspepsia

Dyspepsia may be described as recurrent abdominal discomfort occurring primarily in the upper part of the abdomen. It’s described as functional since there are no other known causes of the symptoms which may include abdominal bloating, nausea, and a sensation of fullness after eating only a small amount of food. This syndrome is though to affect up to a quarter of the population.

Although this isn’t an exhaustive list of the causes of stomach rumbling, it accounts for some of the most common ones. If you experience a recurrent problem with stomach rumbling after eating associated with any of the above symptoms, it’s best to see your doctor who can perform the appropriate tests to give you a definitive diagnosis.

In some cases borborygmi may be a natural part of the normal digestive process as food, air and gas move through your digestive tract. If other pathology is ruled out and you continue to experience symptoms, your doctor may recommend changes in your eating habits to reduce the quantity of swallowed air, the elimination of certain foods, or the use of nonprescription or prescription drugs to aid the digestive process.

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