Anybody with anxiety have chronic stomach problems?

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hopefulmigrainer
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Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 902
   Posted 12/9/2006 4:28 PM (GMT -7)   
I have a good friend (literally) who suffers from anxiety and panic disorder.  She puts on a good show and you would never know it but she has confided in me.  She says that she does not get depressed and finds it difficult to cry.  In the past 9 months or so she has lost a substantial amount of weight.  She looks anorexic.  She has always complained of stomach problems and has gone to holistic doctors who have told her that she has numerous food intolerances.  The last time I saw her I really wondered if she was anorexic.  She never complains of looking fat, in fact she complains that she wishes she could eat all of the good stuff she used to eat.  She has been to Western doctors (minimally) and has had some tests done.  She told me last night that her blood pressure was so low they said she was barely alive and that if she doesn't gain weight they will have to hospitalize her.  She was very adamant about that being a bad idea because she said that the intravenous food would have all of the things that she is intolerant to and the western doctors don't understand that.  I'm beginning to wonder if she doesn't have an eating disorder.  She says that she eats but she can only eat a tiny bit before her stomach hurts and the only thing she eats is chicken, nuts, fruits and vegetables. 
 
Has anyone experienced something like this that was "anxiety" related?
 
 
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen."
 
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Mooney123
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2006
Total Posts : 240
   Posted 12/9/2006 8:00 PM (GMT -7)   
this same thing happened to me. I could hide my panic/anxiety disorder well and found it hard to cry for a long time because i was so numb. I lost lots of weight and everyone started questioning and even accused me of having an eating disorder. I was nauseous a lot and actually tried to gain weight but couldn't. i knew something was very wrong when my stomach was hurting every day all day long. it still does 6 years later. i was diagnosed with severe reflux. i went to a kinesiologist (sp?) and at the end of the appointment, asked him to take my blood pressure.  He told me is assistant would do it.
 
After he went to his car, his assistant took my blood pressure and then ran back to the car to get him. He came back in and told my blood pressure was low--even for low. he told me to go to the emergency room but It was my mother's birthday that night so i didn't go. We went to a restaurant and i tried all night not to pass out.
 
It turned out that i was diagnosed a few months later with severe food allergies. they can make you lose weight, feel anxious, and have low blood pressure. also, it can make your stomach hurt. i think that is why i have reflux AND i think panic disorder caused it. 
 
 
 
 

debaser
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Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 1745
   Posted 12/9/2006 8:04 PM (GMT -7)   
Well, kind of.

I used to be kind of fat before my stomach problems really hit me. I promptly (within six weeks) dropped almost forty pounds once all this started, about two years ago. The only time I'd eat was when I started to get a headache and even then it was only a few saltine crackers. There were times when I tried to eat a regular meal, but every single time I'd get very, very ill. It didn't matter what I tried to eat...it just wasn't working out.

My symptom was nausea rather than pain, but I've been told it's anxiety nonetheless. I think if you have it in your head that food will make you sick, the anxiety will cause it to happen. I've been told that anxiety can wreak all kinds of havoc on one's digestive system. And problems with the digestive system can lead to more anxiety, and before you know it you're trapped in a vicious cycle.

I've gotten better than I was way back then, but food still makes me very nervous. I usually can't tell whether I'm sick or hungry...it's as if the wires in my brain are all crossed up. Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever be normal again.

I'm not a doctor and don't know a whole lot about this, but I don't think they actually feed people intravenously. The use a feeding tube for that, don't they? And then I think it's only nutrients and stuff...not food like we're used to thinking about. Even if she thinks it's a bad thing because of "intolerances", the hospital will take care of her. If her problem is so advanced that she's starving to death she should be convinced to go. A person can do a lot of damage to various organs if they're starving.

That leads me to think about her gall bladder. If her stomach hurts every time she eats something, she could have gallstones. That happens a lot to people if they lose weight quickly. Something obviously caused her to lose weight in the first place, but by now gall bladder problems could be a contributing factor.

harry4
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 1449
   Posted 12/10/2006 12:42 PM (GMT -7)   
try alfalfa tablets, they can tone up the digestive system and cant do any harm
recovered former longtime anxiety and panic attack sufferer and helper of other sufferers  but no training or  qualifications in medicine or psychology, any remarks that may be taken as advice must be confirmed with doctor or other health professional


Bunny_UK
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 12/11/2006 4:59 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Hopeful
 
I don't post so often on the site but your friend sounds just like me. I have lost a lot of weight due to anxiety. I also feel like my wires are crossed, can't tell when I am hungry or ill. My stomach hurts a lot. I eat a little and feel like I can't take another bite. People at work are worried about my weight but I have been quite open about my anxiety, this is because I don't want people to think I have an eating disorder (I don't, want to eat as much as I can like your friend). I try, as much as I can, to eat whenever I don't feel nauseous. Please be careful not to push your friend into the eating disorder category too quickly but I understand that you want to look after them and they are lucky to have a friend like you.
 
I stay on small meals and eat frequently, it can be a viscious cycle if you don't eat because eating can help to pull out of the anxiety.
 
My thoughts are with your friend
 
Bunny

Bunny_UK
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2006
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 12/11/2006 5:02 AM (GMT -7)   
oops, forgot to say, like Mooney and your friend I also suffer from very low blood pressure. I would never have connected the two but maybe this leaves us susceptible to stomach problems? (Rest of my family have high blood pressure!)

hopefulmigrainer
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 902
   Posted 12/11/2006 9:05 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Turkey and Welcome to HealingWell. I'm so glad that you found us. My goodness you have had a hard life. I sincerely hope that you find help with all of the pain that you have to endure. My heart goes out to you. It seems common that chronic anxiety causes stomach problems. My friend has panic attacks frequently. She goes to doctor after doctor. Please feel free to post here when you need support. This is a very supportive forum and anxiety is getting worse at this time of the year for many. Take care and God bless.
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen."
 
Please allow HealingWell to continue helping others by donating: http://www.healingwell.com/donate/


nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 12/11/2006 10:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Hopeful, I've just recently been diagnosed with IBS which gives me cramps so severe I sometimes go to hospital.  Prior to that I had a gallstone trapped in my bile duct.  It was very painful to eat and I just didn't see the point.  I lost a lot of weight and maybe went a bit OTT with it. Sometimes when you are very anxious it's nice to have control over something.  Maybe your friend feels that?? My gallstone has cleared through now and I've regained some weight  yaay!! But the IBS keeps me from eating much that I used to enjoy.  I sit around with a heat pack a lot and get insomnia from the pain.  My doc say's it's all because of my anxiety. I have found some relief from the alfalfa tablets though (big thanks Harry).

Dance like no-one's watching,
 
Love Thy Neighbour, just don't get caught!
 
NervyMeg


hopefulmigrainer
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 902
   Posted 12/12/2006 12:46 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi NervyMeg, you sound a lot like my friend. She feels so out of control through her confessions to me. I have wondered about the "control" thing. An anorexic will feel find control with food. If she does have an eating disorder, she won't admit it. The thing that baffles me is that their has to be more that she can eat than just chicken, fruit, veggies and nuts. I watched her at a buffet table and it was like an anorexic (my Sister) picking only the items with no fat, no sauce, no nothing! I know that she suffers with anxiety though and she is very fortunate because her Mom has allowed her to quit her job and they are going to pay all of her bills. Her Mom has even driven 200 miles round trip on several occasions b/c she has severe anxiety about driving and as a Nanny was required to do so every once in a while to p/u the little girl from her Grandmas house. I wish I had a Mother or Father who could rescue me. I pray for her every night. She seems extremely resistant to Western Medicine. How did you discover the gallstone and for the others, what tests did you have done to discover your stomache problems? thanks.
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen."
 
Please allow HealingWell to continue helping others by donating: http://www.healingwell.com/donate/


nervymeg
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 2721
   Posted 12/13/2006 12:01 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Hopeful, I had an ultrasound and they found the gallstone.  The doc said it was so small (and I didnt have insurance) that they'd just hope it went away by itself. Lucky it did!! Perhaps your friend could try something similar if her parents are picking up the tab.  I wish you had some parents like that right now to support you (((hugs))).  I can understand her being picky at a buffet...I know I can only eat very limited foods (but I try and eat a lot of them).  In terms of anorexia fears I suggest give her time and she might come out of it like I did and become healthier.  If not, hospital might be the best.

Dance like no-one's watching,
 
Love Thy Neighbour, just don't get caught!
 
NervyMeg


GiftOfGod
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 63
   Posted 12/13/2006 9:18 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi hopeful migrainer ,
 
            I can say i went through this stage an on my way to full recovery. It all started with stomach pains and Apetite wasn't the same anymore. I went from stomach pains to losing weight and look very anorexic . Don't get me wrong  I LOVE FOOD , just for some reason i would feel full very quick an stomach pains would come along . The only thing left was to ask for help because i was so scared i thought i was gonna die . Luckly i found a friend in the Healingwell like you to help me with the recovery . Anxiety was the cause of all this an Acid Reflux . I check in with the doctor an he told him everything i felt . He gave me  LEXAPRO that day i came home its changed my life  .
 
Another very helpful thing for ones stomach is 
 
 
Omnigest EZ         www.sunsource.com 
 
It has also help me to eat more, because from so long of not being able to eat
I think my digestion has slowed down . These pills work for Digestion and Acid Reflux
Suffers the Natural Way . You can find them in your local drug stores and Wal-Marts !
 
If you ever need anymore details or maybe you would like to chat about it.
 
MSN:     javy2k1@msn.com
         

hopefulmigrainer
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 902
   Posted 12/13/2006 6:59 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Nervy and GiftofGod (love your screen name).  I passed along this information to my friend.  I have recommended that she come on here a couple of times.  When I passed on the info before she said she wanted me to send any other replies to her.  I hope this is okay.  I figured it is all confidential. 
I feel better knowing that my friend is suffering from psycho-somatic illness b/c the good news is that she CAN get better.  Thank you again for your replies.
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen."
 
Please allow HealingWell to continue helping others by donating: http://www.healingwell.com/donate/


Greeves
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 11
   Posted 12/17/2006 9:24 PM (GMT -7)   
Turkey

I had stomach problems since I was a kid and whenever my mom would drink they would flare up. I didn't know they were anxiety. I would also get 'sick' alot (run fevers, etc) and it was all stress related. even now the first sign of my anxiety is a weakness in my immune system.

I too had my gallbladder out recently (March) and since then it's turned into IBS> Watch what you eat and keep a diary of what happens during each day and what you eat to see if you can identify triggers.

ema1
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2006
Total Posts : 6
   Posted 12/19/2006 5:58 AM (GMT -7)   
I have been nausea and had an upset stomach non-stop for the last three days!!!!
I can`t eat the foods I use to, and I feel that I will never will again, this makes me very nervous.... I have a big healthy girl, but just in the last three days I feel like I lost a tone of wieght.... I will try the alfalfa tablets. I am so glad that I have found this web site. Finaly people who undterstand

Thank-you

hopefulmigrainer
Veteran Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 902
   Posted 12/19/2006 6:48 PM (GMT -7)   
Welcome ema1 to HealingWell. Hopefully the alfalfa tabs help you. When I am anxious my body churns and my legs shakes and sometimes I rock back and forth. Usually, I'm depressed and I eat but when I'm really, really anxious I can't eat and my stomach hurts. Try to do some deep breathing. Feel better.
"God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference. Amen."
 
Please allow HealingWell to continue helping others by donating: http://www.healingwell.com/donate/

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