Pain after eating?: Hey guys, Has anyone... - Endometriosis UK

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Pain after eating?


Hey guys,

Has anyone had pain once they’ve eaten? I’ve found that if I eat something small like a piece of toast I’m fine, but if I eat a meal (like just now) it’s absolutely crippling pain.

It happens with any food as well, I know certain foods/diets can affect it but it seems to be any meals really flare my pain up. Is this a common thing? I can’t find much about it when I google it... xx

20 Replies

Hi Remy how you doing? Have you tried the FOD map diet? I have bowel problems and I used this for a while however when on a period my bowel issue is always worse. Maybe don’t eat a big meal but more little & often. I find cutting out potatoes, pasta, junk food like sweets & crisps, not eating chewing gum, no fizzy juice, no alcohol all seems to help. How boring do I sound! Haha ...... drink plenty of water throughout the day too and that keeps things working x

I had roast spuds this evening and I’m bloated and in pain this evening.. I did wonder whether potatoes triggered symptoms as I had fries the other evening and felt awful after.. bad news for me as I’m vegan and eat a lot of spuddies!

Mine doesn't sound nearly as painful as yours, but I do experience flareups after eating. I have no idea why that is though, and when I tracked my eating for several months, I couldn't see a pattern that was causing the pain.

Hi I agree with AllthatGlitters . I also have digestive issues and am currently feeling pain and bloating as I had a big dinner. Try and eat small portions, Google the FODMAP diet and try and reduce or eliminate any foods that are high FODMAP. You can also try probiotics as they help increase the good bacteria in our gut. Stay away from red meat, alcohol, coffee, processed sugars and dairy. Eat lots of veggies and drink lots of water.

Hope you feel better xxx

Hi I struggled with eating for years and years and years. I was regularly very thin and couldn’t eat a whole meal like normal people. IBS, acid stomach, anxiety etc etc were all suggested by doctors. Fast forward to this year and it turns out I had quite bad endometriosis inc on intestines. Five months on from surgery and I can eat like a normal person. Only if I eat super unhealthily do I get any sort of symptoms now. A surgeon recently suggested my bowels were probably irritated for years not by what was going through them, but by al the inflammation around then. So it might be an endo thing...

I have this! I’ve tried every diet under the sun with no relief (keep a diary), I have had endo removed from my bowel and some issues since so I expect it’s related. I have to take picola regularly or I end up in hospital with a blockage. I do find fibre to be way too painful so I find diets aimed at ibd/gastroparesis way more suitable for me (again, keep a diary)

Mind you, last week I was very bloated and lived off oxo cubes, this week I had pizza and I was fine! But I think that because I didn’t eat all week so even though my stomach was full my intestines were clear.

Healthnut25 in reply to Ash24601

Are you a coffee drinker by any chance?

Ash24601 in reply to Healthnut25

I have two a day, I did give up coffee for a few months but didn’t really notice a difference, do you?

Healthnut25 in reply to Ash24601

At Christmas I started drinking coffee once a day after not having it for years. Gradually the pain built up over the following few weeks - and the digestive issues were really bad (pain after eating a meal - even a bowl of soup - bowel in knots). When I cut out coffee the problems started reducing instantly. I've not touched coffee since, apart from the odd one when I driving late at night - and the odd one is okay.

The coffee also caused me to have cysts in my breasts - and horrendous breast pain for half the month. Thoses symptoms went on cutting out coffee (along with red meat).

Just realise you have to take Picolax regularly- wow that's pretty potent stuff. During my laparoscopy in 2010 my bowel was indiretly damaged so I also have a very slow bowel (redundant colon), which isn't going to help with the endo digestive issues. But I've found prunes to be a life-saver. I eat 8 every morning (heated up) in their juice and it pretty much does the trick (along with drinking lots and lots of water). I'm not a fan of them but they work better than anything else so I grin and bear it.

Ash24601 in reply to Healthnut25


I just saw your comment below. I went veggie 16 years ago then vegan about 11 years ago so my diet had already cut out most problematic foods like red meat and diary (a blood test confirmed I am lactose intolerant which is when I made the switch). I also used to compete internationally so I understand a lot about macros and nutrition from that aspect, two years ago I was healthier than ever (I had excision but the bowel endo was left behind for a colorectal specialist) then after a few months I was hospitalised with obstructions. It’s really difficult to actually want to eat healthy and having it hospitalise you.

Whilst gluten free (again I kept a diary for years) I felt worse off and I think it’s because of the fibre content in the gf bread. I’ve since switched back to normal white and find that a bit more tolerable.

Like op I find volume difficult. If I have a consistent diet of solid food I’ll often end up needing a few liquid only days to give my digestive system a break. It just feels like there’s a constant bowling ball inside my lower belly.

Healthnut25 in reply to Ash24601

Oh wow so you've pretty much tried the whole diet thing. I wonder if your obstructions were caused by the previous op (since the op itself can cause adhesions) - ? I've not had an op since my first and only one in 2010 due to the problems I had resulting from it (from internal bleeding - got a giant haematoma). I was diagnosed with adhesions not long afterwards and had all sort of strange puling sensations and concave areas in my abdomen, and ended up A&E as a result. I read about castor oil packs and massages and gave it my all - sleeping with the castor oil packs on overnight (with how water bottle) and doing lots of really deep massages using the oil (read up on how to do a colon massage). After a few weeks I noticed a real difference - my abdomen was softer, and I no longer got the abdominal puckering. It used to feel like my bladder was stuck to my uterus and it no longer feels like this. Since I've not had another lap it's hard to be sure what's going on (though I've had CTs and MRIs which show up a few things), but I do feel that my organs aren't stuck together like they were. The castor is cheap to buy online - it's a bit messy, but you get used to it, and my own experience is that it's provided a lot of benefits for adhesions and also for soothing abdominal pain related to endo - oh - also fab for reducing a big bloated belly...

Ash24601 in reply to Healthnut25

Tried all that too, massage increases inflammation for me so I end up worse.

I have a complicated op history haha but basically they left endo on the bowel (lower left and higher right, I only had left side pain) whilst waiting for a colorectal specialist, so that seemed to be causing obstructions. They went in and removed all that last August (no adhesions) but had severe rightside pain since so now they suspect adhesions on that part of the bowel where they operated. They’re going back in around December to see what it is, the colorectal surgeons explained that adhesions don’t usually cause pain and more surgery doesn’t mean “more” adhesions but may mean “other” adhesions (hopefully painless ones not obstructing my bowel lol)

Ash24601 in reply to Ash24601

Also awaiting gastro just in case lol

Healthnut25 in reply to Ash24601

Oh dear - you're not having much luck are you? :-/ In the past I have massaged too aggressively which made me worse off - so there's defininitely a fine balance with the right level of touch in an abdominal massage (I've noticed that if it feels too aggressive then it is - but if it feels nice and soothing, then that helps). Did you give the castor oil packs a go though? Massage isn't required - though I like to massage the oil in gently - but some people just pour it on and smear it around a bit, and put on the pack. Just interested in hearing other feedback about the packs cos I rarely come across people on here who have tried it.

Hi Remy, I've had endometriosis for 7 years and during most of this time have kept to a healthy diet to keep symptoms at bay (which seemed to work), however my healthy diet slipped early this year and I returned to eating less healthy food like sausages, some wheat, and coffee, and my symptoms returned with a vengeance. One of the the most inconvenient symptoms was pain on eating a meal - where I would be doubled-up in pain from the top of my stomach down to my colon. It felt as though my bowel was in knots and all stuck together - and stuck to my abdominal wall, and this was particularly bad during the middle of the month and then before a period (so appeared to be related to oestrogen levels rising).

Along with the above I also developed other pains I'd not had in years - particularly constant pain in the bottom of my back, unbearable breast pain, and a burning scratchy feeling in my bladder - but which wasn't a UTI. So, I knew I had to get my diet back on track because these symptoms gave me no choice - I was in some sort of pain 24/7. I completely cut out coffee, and red meat, and those two things alone made a difference within 2 weeks. Coffee and red meat are very inflammatory foods - coffee increases production of oestrogen (due to indirectly robbing progesterone and tipping the balance), which endo sufferers already have in surplus supply - and so the endo increases, and it also results in raised prostaglandin levels which increase pain, and it can be quite harsh on the stomach. If you find it hard to cut out red meat - then I would strongly recommend cutting out coffee (if you drink it) because I think that alone makes all the difference to pain levels. I know that I can never go back to drinking coffee (well - until the menopause at least) - just one cup a day was too much for me, so instead I drink flavoured green tea, redbush tea, and an occasional drink of hot chocolate. Along with cutting out red meat, I also avoid wheat and dairy as much as I can, and drink very little alcohol (maybe 2 glasses a month) - and then avoid overly sugary foods. I do treat myself though - to dark chocolate, which I tolerate ok. Following this clean eating diet I was almost pain-free within 6 weeks - meaning I suffer no pain at all other than 2 days of intense pain during my period and a few uncomfortable twinges during ovulation - but all the digestive issues have gone, along with the back pain and bladder burning.

I realise that for many, the prospect of clean eating can seem very dull - but there are so many tasty alternative options out there. To replace bread I eat sweet potato wraps (from Asda) to use in a sandwich - and I find they have more flavour than bread. I don't eat much potato these days - and instead I really enjoy bioled red lentils which are tasty and peppery and which are really low GI, keeping blood sugar levels down (which can exacerbate pain). To replace dairy I drink almond milk, and intead of cream (if I ever needed it) I use coconut UHT cream which is delicious (100% coconut) - and which I get from the oriental section of Sainsburys/Asda in a little carton. However I still do eat butter, but all my shallow frying is done with olive oil. Instead of red meat I eat turkey mince, tinned and fresh mackerel, tuna, seabass, cod, basa, lemon sole fillets, and a bit of chicken. I can honestly say that I no longer miss red meat and if put in front of me to eat I would probably struggle to eat it. It's amazing how quickly your body adapts to enjoy an anti-inflammatory diet.

Oh - forgot to say. When my digestive issues were bad, this related to increase in blood from rectum before a period, so was proof of increasing endo on the bowel. The more I stick to the healthy diet, the less I see of this premenstrual rectal blood - which is often none at all if I'm really good!

I do hope you find som relief - quickly and without too much sacrifice to your daily routine.


I have this too. I have endo on my bowel and this was excised but MRI has shown it to be back.

I've tried all the diets going for endo and now stick to a vegan, gluten, caffeine, alcohol free one but to be honest I'm still in pain whichever diet I do. I just figure this is healthy and so good for me generally if not for the endo.


I get this where about is your cramping? I would like advice on this xxx

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