Digestive system

Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating: 12 Causes, Diagnosis, Treatments

Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating can be caused by many conditions. Looking at the whole picture and checking all symptoms will help you to identify the cause of Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating.

Once the problem is identified, you will reach the best treatment so you can enjoy your meals, without feeling light headed after eating.

Causes of Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating:

feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating
Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating
Iamge source: yourhearingcenter.com
Food causing allergy:

Maybe nuts or eggs can make your body form antibodies to them thinking they are a foreign body. This will make your immune system act for defence once you eat this food that triggers an allergy in your body.

There will be the release of histamines, and then allergic symptoms appear. One of these symptoms is feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating, but it will be accompanied by hives, swelling of lips and throat, difficulty in breathing, vomiting and lots of itching.

Getting poisoned from unclean food:

This is due to unclean food, may be left outside the refrigerator for a long time or exposed to bacteria and viruses that will make you sick. Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating is usually the first symptoms felt along with stomach cramps. Then after few hours diarrhoea and vomiting will follow.

Dehydration would be one of the expected complications if there were no prompt treatment to stop losing fluids and electrolytes. Also, fever is expected to depend on the severity of the poisoning. Food poisoning is highly noticed in seafood, like seashells that are not clean or were not preserved well.

Virus in the stomach:

It is usually misnamed as stomach flu, it infects the stomach and the GIT, and you can easily catch it by eating using same spoon or fork of someone infected or even drinking from their water or sharing cups.

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Its symptoms are very close to food poisoning, where you will also be feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating, followed by stomachache then diarrhoea and vomiting.

Dizziness and nausea from pregnancy:

Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating is your first early sign of being pregnant, usually starts by the beginning of the second month of pregnancy, this is due to hormonal changes that initiate this dizziness after eating. Smell or taste of certain types of food especially sweetened ones. It only lasts until the fifth month of pregnancy.

You can suspect pregnancy when you’re still not sure about it after feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating by observing other symptoms like skipping or missing your upcoming period, along with tender breasts and a terrible fatigue sensation and needing a lot of sleep.

Reflux of acids:

Heartburn is the hallmark symptom of gastro oesophagal disease, which causes a burning sensation along with nauseous feeling after food. This is due to malfunction of the muscular valve of the oesophagus separating it from the stomach, allowing stomach acid to get into your oesophagus.

Coughing, burning sensation and feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating is the symptoms of heartburn.

Being overstressed:

Stress affects both your mental, emotional and physical health. Stress and anxiety can deprive you of sleep, make you irritable, feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating, and even lose appetite and lose weight.

Chemotherapy treatment for cancer:

Chemotherapy drugs as a cancer treatment make the cancer patients feel nauseous and dizzy after eating as a side effect. Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating go away after you’ve finished the treatment.

Diseases of the gallbladder:

Pain in the upper right abdomen is the primary symptom, due to the location of the gallbladder. Gallbladder assists in digesting food and fats. When you have gallbladder disorders, you feel sick after eating fats containing meal, making you feel nauseous and dizzy after eating.

Bowel syndrome:

It is a collection of gastrointestinal diseases including Feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating, abdominal pain, and constipation.

Motion sickness:

It is sensitivity from movement and anything that moves, and its seen only in certain people. It makes you feel sick, and feel nauseous and dizzy after eating. You might also be sweating and have vomiting. So if you are one of those remember not to eat before or immediately after riding any moving transportation method.

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Postprandial Hypotension:

It affects a high ratio of the population, making you feel nauseous and dizzy after eating, blood pressure goes to the stomach to help in the digestive process, causing low blood pressure in other organs of the body, making you feel dizzy and sick after eating.


Migraines are terrible not only in causing headaches but also makes you feel severe nausea and dizziness after eating. Eating food leads to a tension headache and feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating will shortly happen.

Some types of food can also initiate migraines, for example, onions, dairy products and chocolate. Some other migraine symptoms are vomiting, vision problems.

When to visit a doctor after feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating:

If feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating doesn’t go away for a week then you should call your doctor, but if there is any serious complication, then call your physician immediately.

  • Blood in your vomit or stools
  • Weakness, chest pain.
  • Long lasting diarrhoea more than few days with no signs of a cure.
  • Dehydration signs and feeling so much thirsty.
  • Little production of urine
  • Fever of over (39°C)
  • Strong pain in the abdomen
  • Increase in heart rate
  • Unstoppable vomiting

Children are very sensitive and serious complications could arise, so early physician visit is mandatory in these cases:

  • Vomiting persists for more than a few hours
  • Signs of dehydration, no wet diaper, sunken cheeks, and no tears.
  • Fever higher than (37.8°C)

Diagnosis of the cause of feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating:

Diagnosis can be reached through a questionnaire, describing your symptoms and with all details about your nauseous and dizziness feeling after eating, including when you feel nauseated, how long the feeling lasts, and what elicits it. Some tests and screening may be needed for confirmation of the diagnosis.

  • Blood test
  • Urine tests
  • Skin puncture test, for testing food allergies.
  • Endoscopy on your abdomen and oesophagus
  • Computed tomography or ultrasound for checking the organs of the body for the disease of any kind.
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Treatment for feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating:

The cause of your nausea will determine the treatment plan

-If the cause is due to chemotherapy for cancer patients, then they should ask their doctors to prescribe for them anti-nausea drugs for feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating, and smaller meal portions are to be eaten.

-Treatment of food allergies will only be possible through avoidance of the food that elicits allergy.

-If you are a patient with gallbladder diseases, then you should go for drugs that dissolve stones, but only the drugs prescribed by your physician. And in severe cases, surgery will be indicated to remove the obstructed gallbladder.

-Avoid any spicy food to reduce stomach acids

-Try to lose weight so that you can feel much lighter and healthier.

-If you suspect that you have motion sickness, always sit in a location that is away from the movement or where you will feel the least amount of change, near the wing of plane or front of car or train.  Before getting on a plane, boat or train, take your anti-nausea drugs.

-Pregnancy is not a disease to be cured of, but it needs special attention and management, to make your lifestyle as usual and easy and avoid any complications that would harm you and your potential baby. Eat dry food like crackers and toast especially when you wake up to avoid feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating.

-If you suffer from too much stress, visit your doctor and try to go for meditation and yoga, to relief the excess anxiety that makes you feel nauseous and dizzy after eating.

Ideas for prevention of feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating:

Try these tips to avoid feeling nauseous and dizzy after eating:

  • Chew some crushed ice cubes.
  • Go for dry, healthy vegetables and fruits.
  • Avoid any fried or spicy food.
  • Eat crackers and toast especially if you are pregnant at the beginning of the day.
  • Go for smaller meals more frequently, instead of larger ones.
  • Sit still after you eat to give your body some time to digest the food
  • Eat and drink slowly.
  • Cold food makes you feel better than hot especially if we are in summer time.

Reference articles:

  1. https://www.healthline.com/health/nausea-after-eating
  2. http://www.tandurust.com/alternativetherapies/feel-light-headed-after-eating.html
  3. Barnes, D. S. (2010, August). Gallbladder and biliary tract disease
  4. Mayo Clinic Staff. (2014, July 24). Food poisoning mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/food-poisoning/basics/definition/con-20031705
  5. Nausea. (2013, August 29) my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases_conditions/hic_Nausea_and_Vomiting

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