When Gastroparesis Got Between Me and Doughnuts


10/30/12

There is one thing you need to know about me: I love doughnuts. I am in love with doughnuts. If a doughnut asked me to marry it right this second, I would not hesitate to say yes.  So when that all had to change, when I had to break up with doughnuts; I wasn’t the happiest person in the world.

It came out of nowhere and all of a sudden, BAM! I couldn’t eat anymore. I just physically couldn’t swallow. After a whole slew of tests, the doctors finally diagnosed me with gastroparesis.

According to Clinical Professor of Gastroenterology & Hepatology at the Stanford School of Medicine, George Triadafilopoulos, gastroparesis is a “severe delay in gastric emptying associated with more severe symptoms of vomiting and loss of appetite.” Getting this disease forces you to change your whole diet. Your body rejects certain types of food, causing nausea and vomiting, heartburn, and chest/stomach pain.

“Fats and fiber tend to retard emptying…this should be stressed as many of these patients…also have constipation, [and] have been told to take fiber supplementation,” Triadafilopoulos said.

There is no swelling or itchiness as result of eating foods such as fiber, so it’s not an allergic reaction, but your awareness of food increases the same way it would if you had just found out you were allergic to peanuts or shellfish.

“Gastroapressis is an increasingly recognized disorder,” Triadafilopoulos said. There has been an increase of 158% of reported cases between 1995 and 2004.

Due to the fact that food takes longer to digest, I not only had to watch what I was eating, but I had to change the way in which I was eating it. Eating three large meals a day is often too much food to take in at one time. Instead, it’s wise to have four-five small meals a day. Having gastroparesis certainly doesn’t mean that you have to starve; it just means that you spread out the time in which you eat food. I had a few years of experience controlling my diet before I went to college—a place where your only meal plan choices seem to be greasy pizza or a sketchy sub sandwich.

“The management of gastroparesis in college students is challenging,” Triadafilopoulos said.

So how does one remain healthy and still eat while on the meal plan?

Granted, that answer varies depending on your college and their dining services, but the best thing to do (if you can) is to forget the meal plan, or get the smallest one available and to start cooking for yourself. Cook foods that are low in fat and fiber. Skip the midnight McDonalds run, and (as much as it pains me to say this) avoid doughnuts as much as possible.

There is one thing you need to know about me: I love doughnuts. I am in love with doughnuts. If a doughnut asked me to marry it right this second, I would not hesitate to say yes.  So when that all had to change, when I had to break up with doughnuts; I wasn’t the happiest person in the world.

It came out of nowhere and all of a sudden, BAM! I couldn’t eat anymore. I just physically couldn’t swallow. After a whole slew of tests, the doctors finally diagnosed me with gastroparesis.

According to Clinical Professor of Gastroenterology & Hepatology at the Stanford School of Medicine, George Triadafilopoulos, gastroparesis is a “severe delay in gastric emptying associated with more severe symptoms of vomiting and loss of appetite.” Getting this disease forces you to change your whole diet. Your body rejects certain types of food, causing nausea and vomiting, heartburn, and chest/stomach pain.

“Fats and fiber tend to retard emptying…this should be stressed as many of these patients…also have constipation, [and] have been told to take fiber supplementation,” Triadafilopoulos said.

There is no swelling or itchiness as result of eating foods such as fiber, so it’s not an allergic reaction, but your awareness of food increases the same way it would if you had just found out you were allergic to peanuts or shellfish.

“Gastroapressis is an increasingly recognized disorder,” Triadafilopoulos said. There has been an increase of 158% of reported cases between 1995 and 2004.

Due to the fact that food takes longer to digest, I not only had to watch what I was eating, but I had to change the way in which I was eating it. Eating three large meals a day is often too much food to take in at one time. Instead, it’s wise to have four-five small meals a day. Having gastroparesis certainly doesn’t mean that you have to starve; it just means that you spread out the time in which you eat food. I had a few years of experience controlling my diet before I went to college—a place where your only meal plan choices seem to be greasy pizza or a sketchy sub sandwich.

“The management of gastroparesis in college students is challenging,” Triadafilopoulos said.

So how does one remain healthy and still eat while on the meal plan?

Granted, that answer varies depending on your college and their dining services, but the best thing to do (if you can) is to forget the meal plan, or get the smallest one available and to start cooking for yourself. Cook foods that are low in fat and fiber. Skip the midnight McDonalds run, and (as much as it pains me to say this) avoid doughnuts as much as possible.

Helpful Tips:

Run Away From:

-carbonated drinks

-fried food

-high fibered food (oatmeal, apples, grain breads)

Instead Eat:
-Yogurt

-Soups, or anything that is more liquid based

-cooked vegetables that are low in fiber (squash, potatoes, spinach)

-Eggs

 

Home remedies for nausea:

-ginger (fresh, candied, or in drinks such as ginger ale or tea)

-Yogurt

-Eat slowly and drink a lot of water with each meal

-Lemon

 

article here: http://issuu.com/collegeandcook/docs/fall_issue_final?mode=window&backgroundColor=%23222222

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