What causes common stomach disorders?

Most of us tend to suffer from stomach disorders: the most common ones being related to indigestion. You eat something that is not right for you, and a few hours later you start experiencing discomfort in your stomach. Have you ever wondered what really happens to food as it goes from your food pipe to your tummy that things get messed at the other end?

Digestion is a fairly simple, yet crucial process of our body. During this process, which sometimes can run for days in case of food that is difficult to digest, the digestive system breaks down the food into basic nutrients. These nutrients are then absorbed in the body. However, sometimes things do not go according to the plan. The system can malfunction. There are different reasons why you might experience one or the other kind of stomach disorder.

Heartburn: During digestion, acid is produced. The food pipe and stomach are connected by a valve called as lower esophageal sphincter (LES). Ideally, the LES should close right after food passes to the stomach from the food pipe.

However, if the LES does not close or tends to frequently open, acid produced in the stomach moves up the food pipe. The result is acid reflux that causes heartburn.

Diarrhea: During digestion, fluids are added to the ingested food. By the time the process of digestion is complete, the fluids are reabsorbed by the body and unwanted substances are ejected by the body. Sometimes, the process of digestion and ejection happens so rapidly that the body is unable to reabsorb the water. This can be caused due to bacteria or virus from contaminated food. Sometimes, if a person is lactose-intolerant, consuming dairy-based products can trigger quick ejection of matter. This causes diarrhea.

Constipation: This is the opposite of diarrhea. After digestion, the unwanted matter passes through the colon and then ejected out of the body. Sometimes, the colon tends to absorb too much water from the waste matter. This happens when the muscles in the colon do not contract within the normal range. So the waste matter moves through the colon slowly causing more water to be absorbed. This causes constipation.

Colitis: Generally, infection and food poisoning have been known to cause colitis. In this, the colon gets infected and suffers from inflammation. This might produce sores in the lining if the large intestine. Colitis is suspected to be a reaction of the immune system against bacterial or viral attack in the digestive tract.

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What causes common stomach disorders?