8 Symptoms of Food Poisoning 

Symptoms of Food Poisoning 

Food poisoning is a common ailment that can affect anyone.

It occurs when you eat food that is contaminated with bacteria, viruses, or parasites.

In most cases, food poisoning is not serious and will resolve on its own within a few days.

However, there are some symptoms of food poisoning that you should not ignore.

In this post, I will discuss the eight most common symptoms of food poisoning.

1. Nausea and vomiting

Nausea and vomiting are the most common symptoms of food poisoning.

These symptoms can occur within minutes to hours after eating contaminated food.

Nausea and vomiting are the body’s defense mechanisms to expel harmful food from the stomach.

In some cases, nausea and vomiting may be so severe that you cannot keep any food or liquids down.

If you experience these symptoms, it is important to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.

Also, it is recommended to eat small, frequent meals instead of large meals.

Eat foods such as rice, toast, or bananas to help settle your stomach.

If nausea and vomiting persist for more than 24 hours, see your doctor.

They should not be taken lightly.

Also read: 8 Tips to Get Rid of Nausea

2. Abdominal pain and cramping

Abdominal pain and cramping are other common symptoms of food poisoning.

This pain can be mild or severe and may vary from person to person.

For example, some people may only experience dull pain, while others may have sharp, cramping pains.

This pain is usually caused by natural movements of the intestines as they try to get rid of the poisonous substance or harmful organisms.

You can relieve some of this pain by taking over-the-counter pain relief medications.

If the discomfort is severe, or if it lasts for more than 24 hours, see your doctor.

Learn more: 5 Reasons you have pain in your lower left abdomen

3. Diarrhea

People with food poisoning often experience diarrhea.

This is because contaminated food can cause inflammation of the intestines, which leads to increased bowel movements.

Diarrhea can be watery or bloody and may contain mucus or pus.

It is important to drink plenty of fluids to prevent dehydration.

You can also take over-the-counter medications, such as loperamide (Imodium), to help stop diarrhea.

If you have more than three loose stools in a day, or if your diarrhea is accompanied by a high fever, see your doctor.

4. Fever

A fever is also a typical sign of infections (bacteria, viruses, and parasites).

In the case of food poisoning, the fever is usually caused by the body’s immune system response to the infection.

The fever is usually accompanied by other symptoms, such as chills, body aches, and fatigue.

If you develop a fever, it is important to drink plenty of water, broth and take over-the-counter medications, like ibuprofen or acetaminophen, to reduce the fever.

If the fever persists for more than 24 hours, see your doctor.

5. Fatigue

Fatigue is another common symptom of food poisoning.

The infection causes the body to use more energy to fight off the infection, leading to fatigue.

In addition, diarrhea and vomiting can also lead to dehydration, which can further contribute to fatigue.

You may feel tired, weak, and lethargic.

To help reduce fatigue, it is important to get plenty of rest and drink lots of fluids.

If you are unable to drink fluids because of nausea and vomiting, see your doctor.

6. Headaches

It’s realistic for people with food poisoning to experience headaches.

The symptoms of dehydration, such as low blood pressure and low blood sugar, can cause headaches.

Additionally, certain infections caused by food poisoning, such as meningitis, can also cause headaches.

Furthermore, fatigue and stress can also contribute to headaches.

To help relieve a headache, drink lots of water and take over-the-counter pain medications, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

If the headache is severe or lasts more than 24 hours, go to your doctor.

If you experience any of these six symptoms, it is important to see your doctor.

Read more: 35 Things That Could Be Causing Your Frequent Headaches

7. Muscle aches

You might get muscle aches as a symptom of food poisoning.

The muscle aches are usually caused by the fever and the body’s immune response to the infection.

To help relieve muscle aches, take a hot bath or shower, or use a heating pad.

You can also take over-the-counter pain medications, such as ibuprofen or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

If the muscle aches are severe and do not improve with over-the-counter medications, see your doctor.

8. Blood in the stool

In the most serious cases of food poisoning, you may see blood in your stool.

This is a sign that the infection has progressed and may be causing damage to the intestines.

If you see blood in your stool, it is important to go to the hospital immediately.

Do not try to treat these symptoms on your own.

Symptoms of Food Poisoning

When should you see a doctor for food poisoning?

Food poisoning can be a serious illness and, in some cases, it may require hospitalization.

Therefore, if you experience any of the following symptoms, seek medical attention:

  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Vomiting for more than 24 hours
  • Severe abdominal pain
  • A fever that lasts for more than 24 hours
  • Weakness and fatigue that does not improve with rest
  • Diarrhea that lasts more than three days

If you think you may have food poisoning, call your doctor or go to the emergency room.

It is important to get medical attention as soon as possible to avoid complications.