Why Do Our Stomachs Growl? What Are The Remedies For It?

Nidhi Sahai
Mar 01, 2024 By Nidhi Sahai
Originally Published on Oct 22, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Vikhaash Sundararaj
Young beautiful woman having painful stomachache
Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.3 Min

Stomach growling or 'Borborygmi' occurs when food and liquid go through the stomach and intestines and produce gas.

Stomach growls or rumbling is a normal part of digestion as we eat our food and liquid, some gases are formed which results in stomach growl. You really can't do anything to make your stomach stop making these sounds.

The food we eat goes through our digestive tract from our stomach and causes stomach growling. The causes of stomach growling are incomplete digestion, hunger, and indigestion. When our stomach growls it is a sign that our stomach and intestines are demanding some advice diagnosis or treatment so that the root cause can be found and can be medically reviewed. Indigestion is a big problem in today's world because our lack of proper food intake and time to eat has become irregular and we also refrain from exercises and so by the evening, stomach growling starts. We depend on certain foods like coffee throughout the day and our small intestine doesn't get food to digest, so the stomach and small intestine bear the condition as gases formed by the time we take some food. Gases formed in stomach growling are dangerous as it complicates matters, hence medical advice and early diagnosis are required if it happens frequently. We feel the hunger in our office or our workplace but have no time to eat so we take a cup of coffee to bury the feeling of hunger, which again is not good as stomach growling will increase and ultimately medical advice diagnosis is the only way to rectify the problem. The brain's part is very important as it continuously sends signals that the stomach growl is happening or the stomach is empty and a meal is required. The brain's hormones send these signals and try to intimate that a meal is required otherwise hormones that produce gases will enter the organs in this case stomach and small intestine and results in peristalsis. In peristalsis, coordinated rhythmic contractions of the stomach and intestines occur that move food and waste. Whether you are hungry or not, it may occur most of the time. You need not be afraid of this until this happens frequently. The growling feeling is not very pleasant or has a good feeling.

You can also read articles on why do boats float and why do your ears pop for more insight.

What causes the stomach to growl?

Growling in the stomach is a completely natural process of digestion and sometimes can even happen if you had a full meal or not. Whenever we eat it drink food and liquid, our stomach starts to growl, and this growling happens in both the stomach and small intestine.

The gastrointestinal disorder, which in simple terms is called irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), causes symptoms like bloating, diarrhea, cramping, and gas. It produces internal noise and contraction of muscles, which in turn produces a gurgling sound which is a sign of intestinal upset stomach growling, gurgling rumbling, and sound. In most cases, it's a sign of hunger and your body's way of telling you it's time to eat. In some cases, it shows that the food you ate didn't settle well with your body. When we eat, the walls of our stomach contract to squeeze, mix and secrete the food and then send it to the small intestines so it can be digested further. Peristalsis is generally responsible for the rumbling sound that the stomach makes after eating food. It occurs several hours after eating and even at night when we try to sleep after meals. Flatulence occurs by swallowing air above the food, which is hard to digest. One should go to the gastrointestinal medical doctor whenever they feel that the body is unable to digest food and is making stomach growling sounds or producing loud noises that can be heard by others because it is the gas that is causing problems in the intestine and the system is unable to cope with it. It may also be connected to an underlying digestive health condition, such as recurrent indigestion, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), or heartburn. You don't need to worry about your digestive system or body after drinking as it's a normal movement that can continue for hours.

Is it normal for the stomach to growl?

Growling or rumbling of the stomach is normal for the digestion of food. Our stomach can do nothing to muffle these sounds as certain foods produces more growling than other food and we can notice it.

Incomplete digestion and hunger are the major causes for rumbling in the stomach and the food passes through the small intestine to the large intestine. As we eat food, gurgling sounds may continue as the bowel absorbs water and nutrients and continue to process the food. Gas bubbles are created in the bowel which then creates a growling sound as they make their way to the digestive tract. Various processes of our digestive system produce different sounds in the stomach which are known as 'borborygmi' when the air moves around in the small intestines. In peristalsis, the muscles of the stomach and small intestine contract and relax and help further move the food to the gastrointestinal tract. Bloating also occurs in the presence of production of excess gases in the stomach after eating food. Bloating also causes pain and you may feel irritated. The stomach growl sounds called borborygmi occurs when we could not eat proper food and the muscle is contracted, we could hear the sounds, also, drinking not enough water after a meal, not having a good and healthy breakfast also lead to contractions. During work, we forget to eat our meals on time and it gives us pain in the stomach. We can hear the stomach growling at night because in the daytime we don't eat healthy food during work and because of this the movement of food gets hindered and we can hear gurgling noises in the stomach at night which is quite noticeable to a person.

Young woman and man touching their growling stomachs

How to stop the stomach from making noises?

To avoid the stomach from making noises, the first thing to do is drink plenty of water, drinking water can help stop it. We should eat food slowly and eat more regularly.

One may not feel hungry at the time but the stomach and small intestine will be happy if we eat food and chew slowly. We must limit the gas and acidic foods however hungry we are because it sets a triggering mechanism for stomach growling. Stomach growls when it is empty and eating at regular intervals is the normal thing to do, even medical advice for this problem is the same. If stomach growling occurs regularly then medical advice should be called for. Maybe four to six small meals will do wonders to an empty stomach. It should be chewed slowly as the digestion starts in the mouth through our lar so it is advisable to chew food slowly as it prevents making of gas which creates problems. We should also limit acidic food like chili, alcohol, citrus foods, tea, coffee, onions, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, lentils mushrooms, and sodas as it increases the production of acids in an empty stomach even if you feel hungry. People have an intolerance to certain types of food which can develop gases in the stomach.

What does it mean when the stomach growls?

The growl in the stomach is the output of the food processing process in the intestines With these sounds, gas and air also produce, which is a case of urgent medical attention. The gastrointestinal tract has muscles that make sounds of the gurgling stomach at night if we don't eat nutritious food throughout the day. During the absorption process, the abdomen can growl as the walls intestines secrete nutrients from the food. Muscles make up the walls of the gastrointestinal tract. Normal digestion includes normal levels of stomach growling or rumbling. If you're thinking to make these noises stop, then your stomach can't do anything about it. In a certain stressful situation which everybody faces normally like job interviews, tests, presentations, and many more, these sounds can be heard even louder. Because during the time or sessions of anxiety, regardless of an empty or full stomach, your gut activity increases rapidly, which you can feel also! Borborygmi can also be the result of intestinal blockage or some infection. So the need of the hour should be to see a doctor for an accurate diagnosis and treatment for the problem.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for why do our stomachs growl, then why not take a look at why do pipes burst or why do people dance?

We Want Your Photos!
We Want Your Photos!

We Want Your Photos!

Do you have a photo you are happy to share that would improve this article?
Email your photos

More for You

See All

Written by Nidhi Sahai

Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication

Nidhi Sahai picture

Nidhi SahaiBachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communication

Dedicated and experienced, Nidhi is a professional content writer with a strong reputation for delivering high-quality work. She has contributed her expertise to esteemed organizations, including Network 18 Media and Investment Ltd. Driven by her insatiable curiosity and love for journalism and mass communication, Nidhi pursued a Bachelor of Arts degree from Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, graduating with distinction in 2021. During her college years, she discovered her passion for Video Journalism, showcasing her skills as a videographer for her institution. Nidhi's commitment to making a positive impact extends beyond her professional pursuits. Actively engaging in volunteer work, she has contributed to various events and initiatives throughout her academic career.

Read full bio >