Are you wondering “Why is my stomach always so hard and bloated all the time?” Complaints of hard bloated stomach and other digestive issues are among the most common issues doctors hear from patients across the nation. What can cause a hard bloated stomach after eating? The most common causes are overeating, stomach bloating foods, and carbonated beverages. Certain foods contain chemicals that counteract with our bodies and can be difficult to digest. Some of these chemicals are found in a lot of foods, and can be what causes your stomach to be bloated and hard. One of the most common culprits of your lower or upper stomach feeling bloated and hard are FODMAPs.

1. Gluten and Carbs

These are carbohydrates that don’t get digested, and instead end up being fuel for the bacteria that live inside your colon. That activity can cause a hard or bloated stomach in males or females. Gluten is another huge contributor for digestive upset. Gluten sensitivity affects six percent more women than men, and can especially be a cause of hard bloated stomach in women. Carbon dioxide gas is what makes carbonated beverages bubble.

Unfortunately this gas gets swallowed in large amounts, and the gas bubbles swallowed can get trapped in your digestive tract, causing bloating. Fiber requires your body to adjust to it, and can also make your stomach have troubles after eating.

Women and Bloating

Women suffer more commonly from hard or bloated stomach than males. US Gastroenterologist Dr Robynne Chutkan has studied this subject extensively. Women also have a larger colon than men, in order to accommodate needs for pregnancy and all the extra hormones fluctuations that affect the abdominal walls.  She believes that these are linked, and the larger colon makes it more likely that women will experience this issue.

Additional reasons for the difference in what can cause a hard bloated stomach include the different shape of the colon, and the altered shape of the pelvis, which leaves even less room for the larger colon.

If you are a woman and you haven’t been able to narrow down or eliminate any nutritional causes to your stomach always feeling bloated and hard, it is imperative that be seen by a Physician. Your lower stomach being bloated and hard can be a sign of ovarian cancer.


A very common underlying condition of hard bloated stomach is called Irritable Bowel Syndrome, also known as IBS. Stress is believed to be a major cause of IBS. When we are under stress, the stress hormones switch our bodies focus from digestion, which causes a reduction  in digestive enzymes and stomach acidity. The more stressed we are, the less we are able to digest our food.