Gastroparesis Diet – Questions, Suggestions, Tips

Posted by bellbelinda3 @bellbelinda3, Jan 30, 2012

I was recently diagnosed with Gastroparesis. Can anyone enlighten me about diet?

@rossjt

I think the sugar is too high in Boost and causes dumping syndrome; at least this is what happened to me. My gastroparesis, too, is severe. It sure makes eating and maintaining weight difficult! Good luck to you and don't lose hope for a cure! What caused your gastroparesis? Mine was caused by injury to my vagus nerves during what should have been a pretty routine acid reflux surgery.

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@rossjt If the "pretty routine acid reflux surgery" was a "Nissen" ….an anesthesiologist explained to me that the surgeon is working on you a couple hours in cramped positions… My Mayo GI doctor quoted a 1 in 6 failure statistic to me for the "Nissen" as he diagnosed my gastroparesis.

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My surgery was a Nissen. I had NO IDEA the failure rate was that high. My local surgeon didn't even address vagus nerve injury risk with me prior to my surgery, or even after when I had all my complications! I try not to hold onto my anger, but some days it is hard not to!

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I have been having good luck with V8 fusion drinks. The little cans are handy, but I wish they didn't have the caffeine. They provide good nutrition, though and I seem tolerate them ok. I will look into the Boost Breeze!

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I have discovered, after buying 2 more cases, that it is the Boost that is causing me so much nausea!! It has too much fat in it. Hopefully, Walmart will take it back. If not, I will just give it away. I saw my GI doctor yesterday, he said my gastroparesis is right up there with the worst cases he has seen and that is what has caused my severe acid reflux, which started after my gallbladder surgery in 2011. Things just got gradually bad until it came to a head 6 months ago. It took that long for a diagnosis, because my stomach looks normal. I tried a scrambled egg last night, and 1 ounce of Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheese. It settled ok, but I am still feeling full this morning. Doctor said it will be trial and error. I need to eat 8 to 10 small meals a day. If insurance approves, I will see a nutritionist.

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@darlenemeeder my Medicare and United Health Care Gap Insurance covered my Mayo MN visits with GI and Nutritionist…
Did you get to the Cleveland Clinic?
The single most effective way I figured out what food would work was just through trial and error, keeping a log in the bathroom and in the kitchen … What goes into your body and what are the results/ what come out either end ..what food comes up.. what food goes through…You must understand that gravity now plays a very important role in emptying your stomach……
Put a convenient pad and pencil what ever in both places date and time.. So much really depends upon HOW you eat.. chewing, cutting things up finely… using the blender… do you chew your food very well .. do you eat slowly.. If you live with someone, they won't understand… but as they see you meet the eating challenge every time you put something in your mouth… that will help…
You have to quit eating when you feel full… wait 15 minutes, eat a little more.. Sauces on meat.. on anything helps.. Ken

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Does the Cleveland Clinic have any different info or treatment than the Mayo? I would be interested to learn more. I concur with Ken's post above, except my spouse very much understands my eating and nutrition challenges. She is my biggest supporter and I couldn't do this without her. I don't know how she does it, but she does understand and is very compassionate. My diet is her diet (our diet).

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@rossjt

My surgery was a Nissen. I had NO IDEA the failure rate was that high. My local surgeon didn't even address vagus nerve injury risk with me prior to my surgery, or even after when I had all my complications! I try not to hold onto my anger, but some days it is hard not to!

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I went in for a hernia repair and ended up with a fundiplacation and a damaged vagus nerve..

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@rossjt

Does the Cleveland Clinic have any different info or treatment than the Mayo? I would be interested to learn more. I concur with Ken's post above, except my spouse very much understands my eating and nutrition challenges. She is my biggest supporter and I couldn't do this without her. I don't know how she does it, but she does understand and is very compassionate. My diet is her diet (our diet).

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@rossjt While Mayo MN GI dept is rated the best in the Country… Cleveland Clinic is just a little below.. so Very good.. If your insurance will cover you going there.. it is close by that part of Western NY ..it is always good to get 2 opinions..and to see how bad your case is..
… I was under the impression that you were diagnosed in an ER..
It is just my experience with family and others that they do not usually understand how the gastroparesis varies so much from day to day .. people with gastroparesis usually need to put on the pounds .. while others do all kinds of diets not to gain weight.. Good Luck..

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@citygirlannie Have you seen a good GI Doctor who gave you a series of tests to see how bad a case of gastroparesis you have… What happened to your body weight since that botched surgery..?

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Thanks for your posts! My wife and I often laugh…Those of us with gastroparesis are certainly exempt from America's obesity epidemic! We have to be part of a VERY small population subset working to GAIN weight:)!

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@citygirlannie

I went in for a hernia repair and ended up with a fundiplacation and a damaged vagus nerve..

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I'm so sorry! At the very least, I hope your hernia repair was successful. The pyloromyotomy the Mayo Clinic did for me, in my opinion, has really helped my stomach empty. I have to be very careful in what I eat, but I CAN eat! Dr. Alexander was my Mayo gastroenterologist and Dr. Robert Shen was my thoracic surgeon.

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As I work with trial and error on what I can and cannot eat, I find that sticking with High Protein Boost (6 grams of fat), 3 per day, taking 12 hours to drink them, and an electrolyte drink of 16 ounces, most days, that is all I can do. I have found that I can fix a scrambled egg, using very little olive oil, and add 1 ounce of Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar fat free cheese is very good. I can only do that a couple days a week. I can have a few Pretzels at a time(3), a few Baked Lays Chips(3-4) once or twice a day. I add PB2 powder ( peanut butter) to my Boost to give a little more protein and a new flavor. My Dietitian wants me to eat small meals in between, but I tried and it makes me too sick. I also found a liquid Multi Vitamin. It doesn't taste too bad. Not like those nasty ones we gave to our babies in the 70's!! LOL 😂
Blessings,
Darlene

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@darlenemeeder

As I work with trial and error on what I can and cannot eat, I find that sticking with High Protein Boost (6 grams of fat), 3 per day, taking 12 hours to drink them, and an electrolyte drink of 16 ounces, most days, that is all I can do. I have found that I can fix a scrambled egg, using very little olive oil, and add 1 ounce of Cabot Seriously Sharp Cheddar fat free cheese is very good. I can only do that a couple days a week. I can have a few Pretzels at a time(3), a few Baked Lays Chips(3-4) once or twice a day. I add PB2 powder ( peanut butter) to my Boost to give a little more protein and a new flavor. My Dietitian wants me to eat small meals in between, but I tried and it makes me too sick. I also found a liquid Multi Vitamin. It doesn't taste too bad. Not like those nasty ones we gave to our babies in the 70's!! LOL 😂
Blessings,
Darlene

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I’m sorry you have such severe Gastroparesis Darlene

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@darlenemeeder Have you tried making your own smoothies …. a good way to get more fresh vegetables and fresh fruits..? Can you stand to take yogurt .. ? Smoothies are really tasty.. and easy to me to digest.. I use frozen bananas sometimes… peel them first … then put those extra ripe ones in the freezer in a plastic bag… Simple snacks… I can eat cheese on a cracker…grab one as you go through the kitchen.. seafood spreads on a cracker also works for me… Good experimenting…

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While I label my gastroparesis as severe, gastroparesis is more severe for many of you than me. As I know this disorder firsthand, I have huge empathy for each of you. My ability to eat, or more appropriately, for my stomach to empty, was so significantly improved by the surgical modification of my pylorus (sphincter between the stomach and the small intestine). Food type and amount remains limited. I am very careful and as with all of you, I pay an excruciating price when I let my guard down, and sometimes even when my guard is up and I haven't eaten or drunk anything that should be problematic. My point, or my question is this: Have any of you had a pyloroplasty (completely cut the sphincter so it is 100% open 100% of the time) or a pyloromyotomy (what I had done; cut the muscle around the sphincter so that when it opens as it randomly does with gastroparesis, it is open 100% instead of randomly maybe 2%, 47%, etc.)? Along these lines, have any of you had a pacemaker put in your stomach and what kind of successes and challenges have you had? Similarly, have any of you had a pump put in your stomach and what kind of successes and challenges have you had? I know there is no perfect, win-win surgical or prescription or diet solution, but I am interested to learn about the successes and challenges of people who have had their pyloric sphincter surgically modified, who have had a pacemaker installed in their stomach and/or who have had a pump put in their stomach. Thanks everyone!

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