Stroke survivor - always hungry

Posted by fekind @fekind, Sep 1, 2016

My fiancé who is only 37 yrs old had a massive hemorrhage stroke on the right of of the brain in October 2015. She still has left side paralysis, but making some progress. One of her major issues is weight gain which is making her recovery more difficult. She is experiencing a feeling of always being hungry and has not had the feeling of being full since her stroke. She also does not remember what and when she eats. I continually remind her of what she ate, portions and the time she ate. I have tried recording everything she eats so she realizes how much she is consuming, but she doesn’t have any interest and is only concerned about how hungry she is at the moment.

We have inquired with her neurological Doctor, family doctor and brain surgeon, but none of them have offered any solutions. Her family doctor suggested a wellness plan, but I know she will not follow it.

This hunger issue is also causing her frequent emotional breakdowns.

Any suggestions would be appreciated!

I had a stroke in my left thalamus about a month ago. I felt weak and constant hunger ever since. I’m 65 years old female, and take no meds except a baby aspirin day. I’m 100+ pounds overweight need to lower my cholesterol and blood pressure. I’m eating all healthy foods and have lost 18 pounds but every time I eat I never feel full And I always feel weak as if I haven’t eaten in days. Why is this happening to me and what can I do to remedy the problem?

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@annsandhorst

I had a stroke in my left thalamus about a month ago. I felt weak and constant hunger ever since. I’m 65 years old female, and take no meds except a baby aspirin day. I’m 100+ pounds overweight need to lower my cholesterol and blood pressure. I’m eating all healthy foods and have lost 18 pounds but every time I eat I never feel full And I always feel weak as if I haven’t eaten in days. Why is this happening to me and what can I do to remedy the problem?

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Hi @annsandhorst and welcome to Connect. I moved your messages to this existing discussion about stroke and constant hunger so that you can meet others experiencing similar after effects of stroke, like @fekind and @brglassworks. I'd also like to invite @lsatenst1 @soloact @lakelifelady @maryar @strokesurvivordynamo and @mlmcg into this discussion.

Ann, have you talked to a dietitian or nutritionist about the constant hunger and weakness?

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I have told my 3 doctors and the physical and occupational therpists, none gave me any reply to my question. I will ask a nutritionist as soon as possible. Thank you.

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When we think we are hungry we can really be thirsty. At that time we should drink a glass of water, just plain water. Try drinking at least 8 oz of water before every meal, another with the meal, then another at the end of the meal. Other liquids may not work, they can make you even more hungry. Coffee, teas, and soft drinks, diet can be the worst, to make you more hungry and may not fill you up. Yes, with all that water in you, you will have to make more trips to the bathroom, think of it as exercise.

Doctors know very little about diet and neither do OTs or PTs. Nutritionist can help with diet and what to do about hunger. I am to eat 3 meals and 3 snacks each day. These are not regular size meals and 100 calorie snacks.

Depression can come along with the stroke, you can take pills or visit the Psychiatry Department. I did not want to take another pill so I see a therapist once a month. When our brain has been damaged we have to make it well again. Good luck. mlmcg

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@mlmcg

When we think we are hungry we can really be thirsty. At that time we should drink a glass of water, just plain water. Try drinking at least 8 oz of water before every meal, another with the meal, then another at the end of the meal. Other liquids may not work, they can make you even more hungry. Coffee, teas, and soft drinks, diet can be the worst, to make you more hungry and may not fill you up. Yes, with all that water in you, you will have to make more trips to the bathroom, think of it as exercise.

Doctors know very little about diet and neither do OTs or PTs. Nutritionist can help with diet and what to do about hunger. I am to eat 3 meals and 3 snacks each day. These are not regular size meals and 100 calorie snacks.

Depression can come along with the stroke, you can take pills or visit the Psychiatry Department. I did not want to take another pill so I see a therapist once a month. When our brain has been damaged we have to make it well again. Good luck. mlmcg

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Thank you so much for responding. I will see a nutritionist this week. I don’t have depression, thankfully and will do whatever it takes to avoid medication.

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Good! Get all the information you can from the nutritionist, take notes if that helps, even find out if there is a way to ask questions from home. I am taking 16 different kinds of meds and talking can help me better than another med. If I have to take more pills I will if they will help me be more "normal" (remember, normal is a just setting on a dryer). mlmcg

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@annsandhorst
I just found this article from the American Heart Association that I think will help your understanding of how stroke affects the thalamus, and help you prepare questions for the nutritionist.

– When Stroke Affects the Thalamus http://strokeconnection.strokeassociation.org/Spring-2015/When-Stroke-Affects-the-Thalamus/

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@colleenyoung

@annsandhorst
I just found this article from the American Heart Association that I think will help your understanding of how stroke affects the thalamus, and help you prepare questions for the nutritionist.

– When Stroke Affects the Thalamus http://strokeconnection.strokeassociation.org/Spring-2015/When-Stroke-Affects-the-Thalamus/

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Thank you. Very interesting article. One neurologist told me it had to do with feelings. Makes sense because I had a lot if stress at work.

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I just had my 3rd stroke and was prescribed Warfarin . My appetitehas increased for sure. It started in the hospital and continues now. Always hungry never satisfied.

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Three strokes, I have had only two, so I have no idea what three are like. Strokes affect different parts of the brain, so do not be surprised that your third stroke attacked the food part of your brain. Have you had time to check out the side effects of warfarin? I am not taking it, I am on another med, so I cannot tell you anything about it. One of the things you may want to find out is what part of the brain your stroke was in and if that area has anything to do with what you eat. I have to remind myself to eat and I do not feel hungry, I guess one of my strokes turned off my desire for food. Unfortunately, yours was turned on and running out of control. You may have to be your best advocate to get someone to help you. Remember, "It's not your fault". Shout it from the mountaintop if necessary. Good luck.

mlmcg

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Great message @mlmcg to all stroke survivors and especially to @annsandhorst. I really liked your words, "You may have to be your best advocate to get someone to help you. Remember, "It's not your fault". Shout it from the mountaintop if necessary." Teresa

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