Hi all, I was diagnosed with IBS around 20 years ago now and at the time I had a Colonoscopy and Endoscopy. I had been managing my symptoms really well up until last year when they got worse and I'm pretty sure that was down to stress. I have now left my job and that stress has gone but the IBS is still the same.

I am feeling better than I was as I have been eliminating certain foods i.e. Lactose, raw carrots, raw and cooked onions, sweetcorn and I also eat very little broccoli. I have found that this helps quite a lot but I am at a loss as to what happened yesterday.

I met a friend for a coffee (I ended up having two large mugs) and I ordered decafe and I always take my Lactose free milk with me so that the café can make my coffee with that. I didn't have any lunch at all yesterday, just the coffee which was mocha. About 3 hours after meeting my friend I started to feel very sick and started to get shaky and thought I was actually going to be sick, I had to open the window to get some air. I ended up taking two travel sick tablets (I find these help with nausea) and I wasn't sick.

I did eat an evening meal but struggled but was determined to eat it as I thought it would make me feel better which it actually did. Now I'm not sure if it's because I have been using full cream Lactose free milk (I do find it quite rich as I am used to semi skimmed); whether it was the decafe coffee (I had a look at the internet and there was an article to say that decafe can still affect those with IBS) or whether it was because I missed lunch.

I still feel a little 'yukky' today and it's driving me nuts as I can put up with the pain in the tummy with IBS but not the nausea. Does anyone have any idea why I would have felt like this/has it happened to anyone else?

Thank you

15 Replies

  • Hi sorry to hear about your flare up it really knocks your confidence when it comes out the blue. I'm not a coffee drinker but do think it's poss for decaf to be an irritant or maybe it's the amount you drank one may be fine but two has an affect? I do find my tummy is more sensitive when I've gone long periods without eating. I find Imodium settles my tummy and gives me a break. It's draining so rest up soak in the bath etc x

  • Ps was there much sugar in the coffee? Sugar is bad for me x

  • Thank you Nicki for both replies. I think you may be right that it may be because I had two drinks; I've had two before but from a different place and they are much smaller.

    I didn't have any sugar in them but sweetener; know sweetener isn't good but I haven't noticed I've had a problem with sweetener before but there's always a first but I would have thought that would more than likely cause pain rather than nausea. Luckily enough I am feeling absolutely fine today which I'm really pleased about.

    Once again, thank you for your response, it is very much appreciated.

    Alicia x

  • There's always a chance that you've picked up a bug and it was just coincidental that it manifested itself after the coffee. Try giving up both coffee and milk for a few days and see how things go.


  • Thank you Cat, I don't think it could have been a bug as I didn't have diarrhoea and the nausea did eventually pass. I know I struggled to eat my evening meal but I thought I would have been worse with not eating. Also, normally if I have a bug I'm totally off food, I can't even think about it.

    I have a feeling it may be the coffee - boo hoo!!


  • I can't drink real ground coffee, only instant. It is a nightmare when you go out these days as everyone is now a coffee snob, and addicted to proper fresh coffee. I dare not order coffee anymore. Within half an hour of drinking it I get terrible D that then upsets my system for a few days. I can't say it makes me feel sick but perhaps coffee is a no no for you.

  • Thank you Sue and I didn't even think that might be the problem. I think the best way for me to find out then is to not have any and see how I go.


  • Its so difficult finding out these things, just a lot of trial and error!

  • Thank you Sue. Strange condition we have as I was diagnosed 20 years ago and up until recently I have never had a problem with coffee - weird or what!!

  • Possibly picked up a virus? Or as you were shaky blood sugars low through not eating lunch possibly?

    I get a lot of nausea with my IBS and I can usually attribute it to something I've eaten or that I am stressed or constipated and by that I mean that not clearing properly I may have been several times but as my bowel doesn't function properly I do not always clear what is there.

    My other thoughts are that if you get frequent nausea, bloating dispepsia that you might have an ulcer brewing. I had to take lansoprazole for a while to help symptoms.

  • I have the nausea also along with other symptoms if I don't watch my diet. The only thing that helps me with the nausea is ginger ale but not the diet or not Seagrams brand. Seagrams has the fake sugars even though not labeled as diet. I only drink the Canada Dry and only sip at it.

  • Thank you and that is really helpful, I do love ginger ale and will look out for the Canada Dry variety.

  • Also I believe the decaf is put through a chemical filtering process to remove the caffeine and there is still about 10% caffeine in decaf coffee. Better off drinking the regular. We have enough poisons going into our bodies.

  • I did have a closer look online regarding the decaf and found that it's not bad for you anymore as the method used to discard the caffeine is much better now. I have added the link below for information. They are saying that caffeinated coffee is better for you but I can't tolerate that as well so hence using decaf.

    Once again, thank you for your response.

  • Thank you

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