Indigestion or upset stomach is basically caused because of negligence of food habits or consumption of unhealthy food. A detailed study of the causes of indigestion will give an idea of it.
Following are the causes of indigestion:
Eating unhealthy food:
Intake of roadside food or snacks which are unhygienic and uncovered,, causes stomach upset. Usually these foods are not healthy as compared to home made food. Eating these foods once in a while is fine but eating them daily might harm your body.
Improper methods of cooking food in the house:
- Eating uncooked food
- Using vegetables for cooking without washing them thoroughly with water. Vegetables should be washed before they are cut so that their vitamins and minerals remain, and are not get washed away with water.
- Using contaminated water for cooking and washing vegetables
- Eating fruits without washing them with clean water
- Intake of overcooked food
- Using a lot of oil while cooking food
- Not washing the utensils properly
Eating food fast:
Many a times it happens that when you are in a hurry to go somewhere and at the same time you are feeling hungry. In such cases you do not chew your food properly but just swallow big morsels of food. These big morsels then enter your stomach and do not get digested properly causing stomach infection.
Eating a lot of oily and spicy food:
Oily foods contain high amount of cholesterol. Too much consumption of oily foods increases pressure on the liver as it has to clean all the unnecessary cholesterol contents, and as a result fats get accumulated in the liver resulting into digestion issues. Spicy foods also add to it. High intake of condiments like turmeric, chili powder too is harmful.
Excess consumption of high fiber foods:
Fiber content foods include nuts, figs, pears, oatmeal, popcorn and raisins. Fiber is also present in fruits, vegetables,cereals, pulses and grains. Fiber is good for digestion, however, excess amount of it is again harmful to your body. Surplus amount of fiber is not accepted by the body as it takes time for the digestive system to digest food. Similarly sudden increase of fiber content can also prove harmful as our body needs some time to adjust to the sudden change.
Eating too large meals more than the average capacity of your body affects your digestive system.
Too much of smoking and tobacco chewing:
Both of them are bad habits, and continuous consumption of the same will cause indigestion problems.
Overconsumption of alcohol:
Alcohol is always toxic to our body. Similarly excess consumption of it harms us. Avoid drinking alcohol while having meals.
Stress and anxiety on a person:
This is related to the nervous system. When a person is anxious or under stress it affects their body. When our nervous system becomes anxious, our stomach too becomes anxious. This occurs because of improper chemical reactions due to extreme stress. In order to tackle with stress the blood flow from our stomach is passed to the muscle tissues to supply oxygen. During this process all the important vitamins and minerals is utilized for handling stress, affecting our digestion process.
When a person does not get time to eat their meals at the proper time, and then have their meal at one stretch, they are likely to suffer from an stomach upset.
Less or no exercise at the proper time:
When a person exercise regularly, their muscles contract and expand. This increases the blood flow in their body. Lack of exercise decreases the flow of blood to the digestive system thus resulting in indigestion of food.
Indigestion is very common during pregnancy. Adequate care should be taken at this time.
Inadequate intake of water:
Every individual should have at least 8-10 glasses of water per day to maintain the water level of the body. Inadequate water may again lead to stomach disorders.
Increased amount of digestive acids:
Acids are the key elements which play a major role in digestion of food. But increased level of it is dangerous as it will cause stomach disorders.
Some of the diseases causing indigestion are:
- Gastritis: It is redness of the stomach lining resulting in stomach pain and in some cases bleeding. Sometimes the stomach lining also swells. Gastritis may remain for a short term or sometimes last for months or years.
- Gallstones: Gallstones are small sized stones that are formed in our gallbladder. Gallstones are formed when the liquid called bile (used to digest fats) hardens to such an extent that small stones are formed out of them. When there is a high amount of cholesterol in your body and your body is not able to digest them all, it remains in the bile, and thus gallstones are formed. This happens in extreme stages only when the level of fats in the body rises to the top most level.
- Peptic ulcers: In such a situation the stomach lining breaks or an ulcer occurs on the stomach lining and the mucosal defect develops.
- Bacterial or viral infection: This basically happens during epidemics or consumption of unhealthy food.
- GERD (Gastroesophageal Reflux disease): Gastroesophageal means stomach and esophagus. Reflux means return. Thus when the contents of the stomach return to the esophagus, indigestion occurs.
- Gastroparesis: In this type of disease our stomach does not empty its contents properly thus resulting in irritation of the stomach. Diabetic patients usually suffer from this disease.
Thus we see that many of the causes of indigestion are due to our own careless and unhealthy eating habits. One should work on this fact and try to prevent indigestion to occur in your body.