May 3, 2021

What Causes Anxiety Nausea?

What Causes Anxiety Nausea?

Millions of people experience anxiety nausea and it often becomes so bad that they can't go to work or school. In episode 92, I talk about what causes anxiety nausea and what you can do about it. Have you ever felt sick to your stomach while you have...


Millions of people experience anxiety nausea and it often becomes so bad that they can't go to work or school. In episode 92, I talk about what causes anxiety nausea and what you can do about it.

Have you ever felt sick to your stomach while you have anxiety? It's one of the worse feelings in the world. 

Have you ever wondered if it was nausea that caused the anxiety, or the anxiety that caused nausea?

Many times anxiety is an emotional reaction to fear, and it can be triggered by a person's perception (thinking something bad is going to happen), or it can be triggered by an actual event, such as getting into a car wreck, or abuse. 

When your mind is in overdrive with fear and anxious thoughts it releases an excess amount of the stress hormone called Cortisol and causes neurotransmitters to be released.

Neurotransmitters are natural chemical substances that our brain produces at the end of nerve fibers to many areas of our bodies to keep us healthy.

When a neurotransmitter is released it causes a transfer of the impulse to another nerve fiber or muscle fiber and can enter the digestive tract, and can cause the feeling of nausea.

There are seven major neurotransmitters:

  1. Acetylcholine
  2. Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA)
  3. Histamine
  4. Glutamate
  5. Dopamine
  6. Norepinephrine
  7. Serotonin

When you become anxious, your brain goes into a fright, flight or freeze mode. This is your body telling you that something is not right.

Gastrointestinal Problems Caused by Anxiety

  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Indigestion
  • Loss of appetite
  • Stomach cramps
  • Feeling like throwing up
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

Here are many strategies you can try if you have anxiety nausea:

  1. Diaphragmatic Breathing
  2. Drinking sips of mint tea
  3. Closing your eyes and listening to calming music
  4. Going for a slow walk in the sunshine
  5. Eating some ginger
  6. Suck on a peppermint
  7. Chewing mint-flavored gum
  8. Talking to a friend about how you are feeling
  9. Limit caffeine, nicotine, and alcohol 
  10. Get plenty of sleep
  11. Yoga

Choose one or two of these strategies for 30 days and let me know if they have helped.

What have you tried? Let me know and I can include them in the list.

Thanks for listening to the Mental Health Today Show,

John Cordray, Board Certified Counselor