What are the causes of nausea & bloating?

Updated April 17, 2017

Abdominal bloating is a condition of the stomach or intestines that creates a full, tight, uncomfortable feeling. Nausea is the sensation of needing to vomit. While nausea and bloating can affect almost anyone, both conditions can be symptoms of an underlying illness. If you frequently have these symptoms, see your doctor for a diagnosis.

Lactose Intolerance

Lactose intolerance is the inability to digest the lactose in milk and dairy products, according to When someone who suffers from lactose intolerance consumes milk or dairy products, he may experience nausea and bloating. Other symptoms include diarrhoea, gas and abdominal cramping. Those who are lactose intolerant should avoid foods that contain lactose and take over-the-counter medications that help break down lactose.


Gastroparesis is a health condition that occurs because the stomach takes too long to empty its contents, according to the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. The slow digestive process occurs because the nerve that controls the movement of food from the stomach through the digestive tract becomes damaged. Other common symptoms besides nausea and bloating, are heartburn, lack of appetite, weight loss and spasms in the stomach area.

Food Allergies

A food allergy is caused by the immune system's response to certain foods. An allergic reaction to food may be uncomfortable, though not severe, for some people, but it can be life-threatening to others. In addition to nausea and bloating, other symptoms of food allergies are trouble breathing, diarrhoea, dizziness and hives. If you react this way to a food, get emergency medical help.


Indigestion is a general term used to describe discomfort in the upper section of the abdomen, according to the Mayo Clinic. Overeating, fatty foods, smoking and nervousness are just some of the causes of indigestion. Less frequent symptoms of indigestion are bloating and nausea. Other symptoms include feeling full soon after eating a meal, pain in the upper abdomen and a burning sensation between the bottom of the breastbone and navel.

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About the Author

Katya Gordeeva began writing professionally in 2009. She has had several news and feature articles published in "The Chronicle," "Northwest Indiana Times" and "Gary 411" newspapers. Gordeeva is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in public relations from Purdue University Calumet.