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Dizziness After Eating

by (3043)
Updated about 21 hours ago
Created June 20, 2012 at 6:34 PM

I've been low carb Primal (paleo plus cream and cheese, and 50g or less of carbs) for a few weeks. Prior to that, I was mostly WAPF, with some sugar.

I've been feeling dizzy and lightheaded after I eat. Usually within 5 minutes of eating. I'm not feeling faint, but I can tell a difference.

It doesn't matter if it is more or no carbs, low or high fat, or morning or evening (thou, my afternoon eating doesn't cause it quite as bad as morning or evening.). I've gotten the same feeling from a chipotle meat salad as a 1 inch square of brownie (I work on a bakery and had to try the new flavor.)

Any ideas?

(if it makes a difference, I have a partial gastrectomy, in which part of my stomach has been removed, but I have the natural and functional entrance and exit.)

TO UPDATE: I got a blood glucose monitor, which regularly recorded blood sugar readings between 85 and 100, even after meals. I started eating more carbs to attempt an oral glucose tolerance test, and found that I would get dizzy and/or nauseous when my blood sugar was rapidly changing (falling or rising). It never got higher than 140, and never lower than 79, even with higher carb meals.

EDIT Again: I did an Oral Glucose Tolerance Test. Fasting: 79. 50 grams of carbs (jellybeans). 30 minutes 124, one hour 81 (I felt bad), two hour 73. According to the Hypoglycemia book, it is a mild form of hypoglycemia.

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3043 · July 03, 2012 at 5:57 PM

Thanks Kelly. The immediate dizziness went away when I upped my carbs (to around 100-150). I ate the previous three days around 300 carbs (including wheat and sugar) to get an accurate blood glucose reading, and am now back to focusing on getting between 50 and 100 carbs per day.

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3850 · July 03, 2012 at 5:28 PM

I did have to go 100% gluten-free before it started to clear up.

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3850 · July 03, 2012 at 5:27 PM

Before going paleo, I was experiencing increasingly frequent episodes of gastric dumping and I've never had stomach surgery (did have my gallbladder out). But now it's pretty much gone away unless I eat dark chocolate on an empty stomach.

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3043 · June 26, 2012 at 7:34 PM

To update: I got a cheap monitor, and tested when I felt dizzy/nauseous after eating (rotisserie chicken). Blood glucose went from 104 to 84 in about 15 minutes. Fasting blood sugar was 86 this morning. I will run a more thorough test Thursday, after getting more testing strips.

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3043 · June 25, 2012 at 10:38 PM

Karen, I have no insurance. If I am able to figure out how to fix this without medical interventions, I will do so, because going to a doctor means it will be expensive, and whatever it is will not be covered when I do finally get insurance (or until 2014).

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3043 · June 25, 2012 at 2:51 PM

This is going to be my next step. Thanks for the suggestion!

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435 · June 25, 2012 at 1:08 AM

You probably wouldn't even need to buy a meter. Go to a drugstore that has a blood pressure monitor, and check it. Go eat lunch, then go check it again :)

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4283 · June 24, 2012 at 11:45 PM

http://www.primalbody-primalmind.com/?page_id=1296. It was in Nora Gedgaudas' book

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11581 · June 24, 2012 at 8:45 PM

That sounds well worth checking. And the blood pressure checks aren't difficult. Automatic home blood pressure meters run @ $50-100. Have you checked with your doctor yet Amanda?

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3043 · June 24, 2012 at 8:40 PM

I listed calories on this thread, between 1600 and 2000. I did two weeks without gluten, broken by the brownie (which honestly has about 1/2 cup of flour for about 50 brownies, but gluten is gluten.) Water is at least 50-75 oz per day, sleep between 7-9 hours per night. I've been using more salt in my foods, which has helped slightly, but not totally.

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3043 · June 24, 2012 at 4:58 PM

I'm eating between 1600 and 2000 calories per day, between 40 and 80g carbs (usually under 50), and about 100 grams of protein,mwith the rest coming from coconut oil, cream, and animal fats.

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3043 · June 24, 2012 at 4:57 PM

I don't have a blood pressure monitor, but my heart rate stays the same before and after eating. (I checked, and it runs about 80 bpm)

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3979 · June 24, 2012 at 3:05 PM

6 months??? Where did that stat come from?

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11581 · June 24, 2012 at 2:05 PM

"dizzy and lightheaded after I eat. Usually within 5 minutes of eating" IMO this is the first symptom to make certain to consider out of your list (any others you haven't listed?) because the regular and short time frame is so unique.

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3043 · June 23, 2012 at 9:17 PM

I supplement with magnesium oil, about 20 sprays each morning. I may try to increase that and sodium.

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11581 · June 23, 2012 at 5:36 PM

I just did some checking. It looks like GD is associated with other types of gastric surgeries also. Not sure if that is it why it would turn up now, but the stuff I'm reading does indicate connection to diet. I'm NOT saying I'm right (see h not d above) but maybe it shouldn't be ruled out. Again, Doc is the best for diagnosis.

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11581 · June 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

Well, not surprising if this isn't the solution. I'm a horticulturist, not a doctor. Best thing is to talk to your doctor, especially since you have an existing medical issue.

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11581 · June 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

Totally agree with the seeing your doctor.

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3043 · June 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Gastric dumping is associated with gastric bylaws, in which an artificial opening is created from the stomach into the small intestines. It usually isn't present in gastrecomies that preserve the exit opening. Also, this issue is new since going low carb, it was not present with my previous SAD diet or WAPF eating.

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19ff515e8ec02d95e8f2cf68c3ec1373
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1187 · June 25, 2012 at 4:53 AM

Could you get a blood glucose meter and check your fasting, then before a meal, right when you feel dizzy and then an hour and 2 after? Rule out blood sugar issues (even while vlc, it can happen) then we can it down.

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d
3043 · June 25, 2012 at 2:51 PM

This is going to be my next step. Thanks for the suggestion!

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d
3043 · June 26, 2012 at 7:34 PM

To update: I got a cheap monitor, and tested when I felt dizzy/nauseous after eating (rotisserie chicken). Blood glucose went from 104 to 84 in about 15 minutes. Fasting blood sugar was 86 this morning. I will run a more thorough test Thursday, after getting more testing strips.

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11581 · June 23, 2012 at 3:04 PM

Have you looked into gastric dumping syndrome?

"Gastric dumping syndrome, or rapid gastric emptying is a condition where ingested foods bypass the stomach too rapidly and enter the small intestine largely undigested. It happens when the upper end of the small intestine, the duodenum, expands too quickly due to the presence of hyperosmolar (substances with increased osmolarity) food from the stomach. "Early" dumping begins concurrently or immediately succeeding a meal. Symptoms of early dumping include nausea, vomiting, bloating, cramping, diarrhea, dizziness and fatigue. "Late" dumping happens 1 to 3 hours after eating. Symptoms of late dumping include weakness, sweating, and dizziness. Many people have both types. The syndrome is most often associated with gastric surgery."

Sounds like a good time to talk to your doctor.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f
11581 · June 23, 2012 at 4:10 PM

Well, not surprising if this isn't the solution. I'm a horticulturist, not a doctor. Best thing is to talk to your doctor, especially since you have an existing medical issue.

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d
3043 · June 23, 2012 at 3:35 PM

Gastric dumping is associated with gastric bylaws, in which an artificial opening is created from the stomach into the small intestines. It usually isn't present in gastrecomies that preserve the exit opening. Also, this issue is new since going low carb, it was not present with my previous SAD diet or WAPF eating.

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f
11581 · June 23, 2012 at 5:36 PM

I just did some checking. It looks like GD is associated with other types of gastric surgeries also. Not sure if that is it why it would turn up now, but the stuff I'm reading does indicate connection to diet. I'm NOT saying I'm right (see h not d above) but maybe it shouldn't be ruled out. Again, Doc is the best for diagnosis.

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d
3043 · June 25, 2012 at 10:38 PM

Karen, I have no insurance. If I am able to figure out how to fix this without medical interventions, I will do so, because going to a doctor means it will be expensive, and whatever it is will not be covered when I do finally get insurance (or until 2014).

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3850 · July 03, 2012 at 5:28 PM

I did have to go 100% gluten-free before it started to clear up.

F0e558010a2ecb31fa37b7c491596b8e
3850 · July 03, 2012 at 5:27 PM

Before going paleo, I was experiencing increasingly frequent episodes of gastric dumping and I've never had stomach surgery (did have my gallbladder out). But now it's pretty much gone away unless I eat dark chocolate on an empty stomach.

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32518 · June 23, 2012 at 8:24 PM

Either sodium or magnesium deficiency can do this to me. Dropping grains eliminates a fair amount of magnesium, so that may be the culprit. Try 200-600 mg Mag Citrate or Glycinate before bed.

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3043 · June 23, 2012 at 9:17 PM

I supplement with magnesium oil, about 20 sprays each morning. I may try to increase that and sodium.

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424 · June 24, 2012 at 7:14 PM

Perhaps the gluten is getting to you, and cutting back on it has made the problems more evident. Are you eating enough calories for your body weight? water, electrolytes, and quality sleep?

My mother has rheumatoid arthritis and the pain had gotten so bad that she had mostly lost her appetite. When she would eat, she would have to immediately have to lay down due to dizziness and rapid heartbeat. Her doctors told her to eat more, which didn't help at all as it just made her feel sick, fueling the food avoidance. She lost most of her weight and muscle mass and was feeling terrible all day. She took the suggestion of cutting out wheat, dizziness stopped. Fast forward a few months, weight and muscle are back, no symptoms unless she has wheat, and a steady appetite. When she does have wheat, it takes about a week for her to bounce back to feeling well again.

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d
3043 · June 24, 2012 at 8:40 PM

I listed calories on this thread, between 1600 and 2000. I did two weeks without gluten, broken by the brownie (which honestly has about 1/2 cup of flour for about 50 brownies, but gluten is gluten.) Water is at least 50-75 oz per day, sleep between 7-9 hours per night. I've been using more salt in my foods, which has helped slightly, but not totally.

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435 · June 24, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Any chance you could check blood pressure before eating, and again when the dizziness hits? I wonder if it could be postprandial hypotension.

If blood pressure isn't changing much, could it be that you aren't eating enough?

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3043 · June 24, 2012 at 4:57 PM

I don't have a blood pressure monitor, but my heart rate stays the same before and after eating. (I checked, and it runs about 80 bpm)

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f
11581 · June 24, 2012 at 8:45 PM

That sounds well worth checking. And the blood pressure checks aren't difficult. Automatic home blood pressure meters run @ $50-100. Have you checked with your doctor yet Amanda?

4b5be253ac1981c690689cab7e4bf06d
3043 · June 24, 2012 at 4:58 PM

I'm eating between 1600 and 2000 calories per day, between 40 and 80g carbs (usually under 50), and about 100 grams of protein,mwith the rest coming from coconut oil, cream, and animal fats.

C8549e3ab0e3d77910e72c87cb5e0918
435 · June 25, 2012 at 1:08 AM

You probably wouldn't even need to buy a meter. Go to a drugstore that has a blood pressure monitor, and check it. Go eat lunch, then go check it again :)

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244 · June 24, 2012 at 1:39 AM

This started to happen to me about six months into paleo, accompanied by shaking. I upped my calories and completely eliminated gluten. I hasn't happened since, and that was 7 months ago.

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4703 · June 23, 2012 at 8:15 PM

The fact that it was not present with other dieting, notably SAD, would suggest to me either that you're not taking in enough sodium or enough sugar (I know, gasp). I think there are a couple options. One would be to add some salt to your food or water (Morton's canning salt is iron free and what I personally use). Another would be to consider that a different approach and do some alternative reading to get a little more information (e.g. dannyroddy.com).

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4283 · June 23, 2012 at 3:15 PM

It sounds like you have a gut issue. I'd see a Doctor. Could be a gut infection, such as H. Pylori. Without labs it is all speculation. I've been having some dizziness and stomach pain around meal times and turns out it was H. Pylori. Until you see the Doc you should try adding some fermented foods and probiotics. I would also get your enzymes checked. AND STOP EATING BROWNIES. Gluten exposure can affect you for up to 6 months.

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11581 · June 23, 2012 at 4:09 PM

Totally agree with the seeing your doctor.

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3979 · June 24, 2012 at 3:05 PM

6 months??? Where did that stat come from?

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4283 · June 24, 2012 at 11:45 PM

http://www.primalbody-primalmind.com/?page_id=1296. It was in Nora Gedgaudas' book

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70 · June 20, 2012 at 9:02 PM

I often get this, too. I wouldn't say it is virtually every time, but usually after a meal. I have come to believe it has to do with blood sugar as well as salt intake. I have very low blood pressure, so when I consume salt I think it temporarily increases it, making me a bit dizzy. It sounds like what we have is quite similar.

Also- I drink TONS of water, about 10 bottles a day, or 20 cups (I weigh 175). I think this can sometimes lead to dizziness because it waters down electrolytes. I have always been prone to electrolyte depletion through sweating, and this feeling after eating is similar to the dehydration feeling.

Hopefully this helps and doesn't add to the confusion. I definitely think all three issues cause my frequent dizziness.

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0 · September 20, 2013 at 10:25 PM

I'm wondering if I should even stay Primal/Paleo. I mean I was feeling great before starting this and I just wanted to take my internal health to a better level. I've been having dizzy spells for quite some time now and I get restless feelings like I can't stay still. What's going on? Maybe my body is giving me signs that it does not like these new changes. Is it possible that Paleo is not for everybody?

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0 · September 20, 2013 at 10:16 PM

I'm also suffering from dizzy spells and I don't have any other health issues. I'm wondering if I should even stay Primal/Paleo. I mean I was feeling great before starting this and I just wanted to take my internal health to a better level. I've been having dizzy spells for quite some time now and I get restless feelings like I can't stay still. What's going on? Maybe my body is giving me signs that it does not like these new changes.

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0 · March 31, 2013 at 7:24 PM

It sounds like insulin resistance. Dizzyness is usually blood sugar imbalance according to my naturopath. You should try doing the no starch no sugar no dairy diet atleast for a few weeks and see how you feel. Also supplement with chromium and magnesium 2x/day. It helps normalize blood sugar levels. According to your diet, it looks a lot like mine did before I went paleo and cut starches and sugars and dairy. I haven't been dizzy since. Hope this helps.

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0 · March 31, 2013 at 7:23 PM

It sounds like insulin resistance. Dizzyness is usually blood sugar imbalance according to my naturopath. You should try doing the no starch no sugar no dairy diet atleast for a few weeks and see how you feel. Also supplement with chromium and magnesium 2x/day. It helps normalize blood sugar levels. According to your diet, it looks a lot like mine did before I went paleo and cut starches and sugars and dairy. I haven't been dizzy since. Hope this helps.

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0 · February 08, 2013 at 8:46 PM

For the past three months I have experienced severe dizziness after eating, combined with sweating and rapid heartbeat. This has now become so debilitating I am afraid to eat as of late I have experienced heart palpipations. I was admitted to hostital and had cardiac investigations which showed nothing, I had an endoscopy which showed old damage from ulcers, an ultra-sound scan which showed nothing. I am at a loss now, all the dr's suggest is Lanzoprole, I take 30 mgs per day. Please advise if I can change my diet at all? I tend to have cereal in the morning, weak tea, fruit juice, not much for lunch, a banana and supper is meat/fish and veg. I do drink milk and eat bread. I still have my gall bladder and no gall-stones showed. Any help would change my life.

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0 · September 02, 2012 at 8:44 PM

It might be a gluten allergy. Common symptoms are diarrhea, stomach pains, bloating, fatigue. Gluten is found in common foods such as bread, pasta and snacks.

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0 · August 05, 2012 at 12:31 PM

Ok so this is what's happening to me I have been on ww for 3 years I have treat points but when I do eat fatty foods or eat slightly too much I go dizzy I have really really bad stomach cramps diohrea and sometimes throw up it happened once when I had a MacDonalds buger and once when I had a muccflurry .also it happens when I have eaten alot of bread there is lots of times this has happened but can't remember them all its horrible I don't want to be ill everytime I treat myself once I went so dizzy after a burger I had black spots in my eyes I felt like I was going to pass out does anyone know what's wrong with me I am not diabetic I haven't seen a doctor about it yet I am female I am 30

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3850 · July 03, 2012 at 5:41 PM

I just want to add that if you have only recently lowered your carbs, you probably had insulin resistance, and were excreting excess insulin when you ate. Your body may still be adjusting to your lowered carbohydrate intake and increasing insulin sensitivty. Therefore, it is still excreting more insulin that you need, causing these drops in blood sugar. Since blood sugar control is basically a giant feedback loop, every time this happens, your body will respond by releasing slightly less insulin next time. It may take a while but eventually it will all even out.

Generally this is more of a problem in the morning because your insulin sensitivity is greatest in the morning.

Until then, try and make sure you are getting enough fat and protein at every meal. It won't stop the blood sugar drop, but the slowness with which they are digested will give your body time to "catch up" after the blood sugar drop. If you don't recover quickly enough, eat some more easily digested proten (meat or eggs). Don't eat sugar because it will just throw off the cycle and your body will overcompensate.

And it will get better.

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3043 · July 03, 2012 at 5:57 PM

Thanks Kelly. The immediate dizziness went away when I upped my carbs (to around 100-150). I ate the previous three days around 300 carbs (including wheat and sugar) to get an accurate blood glucose reading, and am now back to focusing on getting between 50 and 100 carbs per day.

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