January 16, 2020 3 min read

While many of us have experienced the negative side of butterflies in your stomach, the daily reality of your stress could be the source of your stomach problems.

Anxiety and digestion are fundamentally linked. That is why digestive issues related to anxiety are not uncommon, so much so that often people don't realize that anxiety is affecting the way they digest their food.

The crossover between the gut and brain means that when the brain is under stress, the stomach responds with stress. The gut-brain connection can worsen certain conditions - like panic attacks - for those with high-level anxiety. Luckily, if your digestive issues are stress-related, there are ways you can help your gut feel better. To deal with your digestive issues more holistically, here are some signs that can help you determine whether high anxiety levels cause them:

  1. You have developed acid-reflux

Having more trouble digesting acidic foods than usual? Your anxiety might be the culprit. This relationship is especially likely if you're going through a period of more stress than usual. Anxiety hikes up the amount of acid produced in our gut, which could be causing your heartburn or acid reflux.

  1. You are struggling with regular stomach cramps

Some of us already know what a drudgery period cramps are, but what if you are dealing with those of the non-period variety? What happens is that when under stress, our stomach contracts leading to cramps. Out of the blue stomach, cramps are a sign of increased anxiety. So, you need to take a break from whatever is stressing you out!

  1. You get diarrhoea before big moments

If you have been diagnosed with chronic anxiety, chances are you get highly nervous or stressed before a big event. And no matter how many breathing exercises you do to cope, these feelings could be the reason your digestion gets out of whack before that critical work meeting or exam. Stress can cause your digestive contractions to increase, which can lead to diarrhea. While you feel the discomfort of anxiety kicking in, you really don't want to worry about this finicky stomach too.

  1. You feel like vomiting when stressed

Norepinephrine is a chemical that is found in the brains of people affected by anxiety. It decreases blood flow to the stomach and slow downs the release of gastric juices and digestive enzymes. It is a prime cause for nausea and vomiting for those who have high-stress levels.

  1. You are constipated without a change in diet

Someone with high-functioning anxiety has aplenty of low-level stress. While this can reduce some less obvious physical symptoms like constipation, it can also cause the opposite effect.

Due to the steady release of stress hormones, causing the constant worrying, there is a simultaneous reduction of blood flow to the gut. This also means the muscle contractions that push food through the GI tract are slowed and cause a disturbance in your belly.

There are signs of anxiety-induced gastrointestinal problems. It is important to observe your symptoms, and they will likely improve if you treat your anxiety first. Well, that isn't so easy! So, we have a game-changer to keep your gut healthy.

Akiva Superfoods' Activated Charcoal Shot is a traditional Ayurvedic herbal formulation consisting of three fruits native to the Indian subcontinent: Amalaki, Bibhitaki, and Haritaki. It strengthens digestive fires by providing nutrients and pushing out toxins from the body. With a mild laxative effect, it enhances the health of the gastrointestinal tract by rejuvenating the membrane lining of the intestines and by stimulating bile production. Our belly tonic, Triphala shot promotes gastrointestinal mobility. It regulates contraction and relaxation of the muscles in the gut and stomach, perfect to give you some relief in high-anxiety phases.

So, begin your day with a 60 ml Triphala shot and make sure you are eating healthy foods that are easy to digest. Jogging is also an incredibly useful tool for dealing with stress. While these are just some of the things you can do to try to make sure that your anxiety-driven digestive health improves, we recommend you work towards building a healthier relationship with stress.