Can you have food poisoning without vomiting?

In this brief guide, we will answer the query, “Can you have food poisoning without vomiting?”. We will also talk about the causes of food poisoning and how to avoid getting food poisoning.

Can you have food poisoning without vomiting? 

No, you cannot have food poisoning without showing the symptom of vomiting. One of the main symptoms of food poisoning or foodborne illness is vomiting along with other unpleasant conditions. Nausea and vomiting are one of the major signs of food poisoning with diarrhea, headaches, stomach cramps, abdominal pain, and fever.

How long does food poisoning last?

The symptoms of food poisoning last for as little as 30 minutes to as long as 8 weeks depending on the cause and source of infection. Most common food poisoning symptoms should slowly ease and heal in about a week’s time.

What are the symptoms of food poisoning? 

The symptoms of food poisoning can vary according to the cause and source of infection. The common symptoms of food poisoning are as follows:

  • Stomach cramps
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Mild fever
  • Headache
  • Weakness
  • Loss of appetite

What causes food poisoning? 

There are more than 250 bacteria, viruses, and parasites that are a known cause of food poisoning. These microbes and pathogens can be found in food either raw or cooked if not handled safely and hygienically.

Eating raw fruits and vegetables without properly washing them can increase the risk of food poisoning as the bacteria and viruses along with other pathogens could have contaminated the raw produce during harvesting or processing and packaging.

Meat and poultry are also frequently contaminated by pathogens and microbes as they can be a breeding ground for the pathogens if not handled and stored at the right temperatures as they tend to grow and multiply at room temperatures between 40 F and 140 F.

The pathogens, bacteria, and viruses can also be transmitted through drinking contaminated water or washing fresh produce with contaminated water.

Bacteria are the most common cause of food poisoning. Some of the bacterias that cause food poisoning are as follows:

  • E.coli
  • Listeria monocytogenes
  • Salmonella
  • Campylobacter
  • Clostridium botulinum
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Shigella
  • Vibrio vulnificus

The parasitic infection that leads to food poisoning is very rare but the ones that spread through food are very dangerous. Some of the parasites that cause food poisoning are as follows:

  • Toxoplasma gondii
  • Giardia lamblia
  • Taenia saginata
  • Taenia solium
  • Diphyllobothrium latum
  • Cryptosporidium
  • Ascaris lumbricoides
  • Flukes
  • Pinworms
  • Trichinella 

Some viruses are also known to cause food borne illnesses such as:

  • Norovirus
  • Rotavirus
  • Astrovirus
  • Sapovirus
  • Hepatitis A virus

How is food poisoning diagnosed? 

There are several tests that can be done in order to diagnose food poisoning. Generally, a doctor can diagnose a food poisoning case by just looking at the symptoms. But if tests are required to find the root cause then the following tests can be performed.

  • Blood tests
  • Stool tests
  • Imaging tests such as MRI or CT scans

What are the treatment options for food poisoning? 

Some of the treatment options for food poisoning are: 

Take medications 

Take medications depending on the cause of food poisoning as a viral or parasitic infection won’t be healed by taking an antibacterial medication. It is important to get the stool or blood samples tested to find the cause of infection to get the treatment.

Depending on the severity of the infection, over-the-counter medication to suppress vomiting and diarrhea can also treat the infection, or prescription drugs prescribed by a doctor depending on the pathogen responsible for the infection are needed to fully treat the illness.

Staying hydrated 

Staying hydrated is very important as the body fluid content will be low due to diarrhea and vomiting. Dehydration due to diarrhea and vomiting can cause fatigue and weakness along with headaches and muscle pain.

Drinking plenty of water or electrolytes and fruit juices and coconut water can help rehydrate the system. Coffee and tea should be avoided as they have caffeine which can irritate the digestive tract making the condition worse.

Green tea such as chamomile, dandelion, and peppermint tea can help soothe the upset stomach and help relieve digestive distress.

Plenty of rest 

Apart from staying hydrated, it is also important to get plenty of rest as the body will be exhausted by vomiting and diarrhea as it loses quite an amount of body water content. As fatigue and weakness with abdominal cramps and pain are inevitable with food poisoning, rest is needed to revitalize the body.


In this brief guide, we answered the query, “Can you have food poisoning without vomiting?”. We also talked about the causes of food poisoning and how to avoid getting food poisoning.

I hope you find this blog useful. If you have any questions, please let us know.


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