Monthly Archives: March 2014

Gastroparesis Diet for Delayed Stomach Emptying

The purpose of the gastroparesis diet is to reduce GP symptoms and maintain adequate fluids and nutrition. There are three steps to the diet.

STEP 1: Diet consists of liquids, which usually leave the stomach quickly by gravity alone. Liquids prevent dehydration and keep the body supplied with vital salts and minerals.

STEP 2: Diet provides additional calories by adding a small amount of dietary fat — less than 40 gm each day. For patients with gastroparesis, fatty foods and oils should be restricted, because they delay stomach emptying. However, patients at the Step 2 level are usually able to tolerate this amount.

STEP 3: Diet is designed for long-term maintenance. Fat is limited to 50 gm per day, and fibrous foods are restricted, because many plant fibers cannot be digested.

More details of the diet with Sample Menus can be read at Jackson/Siegelbaum Gastroenterology’s Website

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Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD)

There are specific carbohydrates which are trouble makers in the digestive system. The purpose of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) is to eliminate these carbohydrates and cause a healthy, natural, controlled remission.

The SCD Web Library Site is geared towards those people suffering from Crohn’s Disease, Ulcerative Colitis, IBS and Celiac.  I have found though that the SCD is helpful in dealing with Bacteria Overgrowth for those with Gastroparesis.  The SCD is based on the principle that specifically selected carbohydrates requiring minimal digestion are well absorbed, leaving virtually nothing for intestinal microbes to feed on.

The SCD Web Library lists recipes and shopping lists, success stories, resources and more.

| More about the SCD |

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More Natural Remedies for Bacterial Overgrowth

The last post on Bacterial Overgrowth did not include my top two natural supplements for treating bacterial overgrowth and keeping it away.  I prefer these two brands and they seem to work the best.

  • Candida Support by now.  Candida Support is a combination of traditional herbal ingredients (Pau D’Arco, Black Walnut and Oregano Oil), Biotin (a B-complex vitamin) and Caprylic Acid (a naturally occurring fatty acid derived from plant oils) that may help to support a healthy balance of intestinal bacteria. Although Candida Support is not meant to clear Candida albicans from the gut, it can help to support a healthy balance of intestinal flora
  • PB 8 Probiotics by Nutrition Now.PB8 PRO-Biotic Acidophilus contains specially selected bacteria that are protected from destructive stomach acids by a special coating applied during its unique production method. The capsules need no refrigeration and contain eight strains of friendly bacteria.As a dietary supplement, two capsules contain: 100% Natural Cultures of Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Lactobacillus plantarun, Lactobacillus bulgaricus, Lactobacillus casei, S.thermophilus, Bifodobacterium bifidum, S. faecium, Bifidobacterium 1000 mg.
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Natural Remedies for Bacterial Overgrowth

If you suffer from Gastroparesis then you most likely will encounter Hydrogen Producing Bacterial Overgrowth of the small intestines.  The test for Hydrogen Bacteria is very time consuming – it takes around fours hours and you have to breath into  a device every half hour or so then wait for the results to be read from a lab which can take a week.  Doctors treatments are harsh antibiotics.  We have discovered that the best way to keep Bacterial Overgrowth away is to follow some natural remedies.  Also, limit your sugar intake!

My top two natural supplements for treating bacterial overgrowth and keeping it away are Candida Support by now and PB 8 Probiotics by Nutrition Now.  You can read about the supplement facts of these two products by visiting this post.

There are three parts to the natural treatment of bacterial overgrowth:

  • Diet – Low carbohydrate diet
  • Eradicate unfriendly bacteria in the small intestine using herbs such as peppermint oil.
  • Replace – Bacterial overgrowth impairs friendly bacteria (“probiotics”) and digestive enzymes.

Herbs

The most studied natural treatment for bacterial overgrowth is enteric coated peppermint oil, which is peppermint oil that has an edible, hard shell around it so that the capsule doesn’t open until it is in the small intestine. It kills bacteria in the small intestine.

The course of treatment is usually 1 to 6 months. A typical dose of enteric-coated peppermint oil is one to two capsules three times a day, taken in between meals with a glass of water. Side effects can include heartburn, rectal burning, and minty burping.

Other herbal antimicrobials used to treat bacterial overgrowth are:

  • Grapefruit seed extract – for people who don’t like taking capsules, grapefruit seed extract can be found in liquid form. Add a few drops to a glass of water and drink in between meals.
  • Oregano oil capsules
  • Garlic
  • Berberine – goldenseal, oregon grape
  • Olive leaf extract
  • Pau d’arco
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Gastroparesis Causes

There are many different causes of Gastroparesis, although the connection between disorders is not completely apparent in many scenarios.

Complications from Abdominal surgery such as nissen fundoplication, gastric bypass surgery, and/or gallbladder removal. Surgery may injure the vagus nerve which is responsible for causing the stomach muscles to contract, pushing food out of the stomach. If the vagus nerve is damaged, it becomes paralyzed and is unable to perform this function. In some instances, post-surgical gastroparesis is temporary and the stomach returns to normal after healing but in many situations if the vagus nerve is badly damaged then the gastroparesis remains long term.

Diabetes is another cause of Gastroparesis. Other causes include some disorders of the nervous system, such as Parkinson’s disease, stroke, and some medicines, such as tricyclic antidepressants, calcium channel blockers, and opiate pain relievers.  Sometimes people get idiopathic gastroparesis for no known reason.

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Medications Associated With Impaired Gastric Emptying

Those with Gastroparesis should avoid these medications if possible because it makes gastric emptying even slower.  Some of these meds were actually prescribed to my husband by GI Doctors even after he was diagnosed with GP.

  • Narcotics
  • Tricyclic Antidepressants
  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Clonidine
  • Dopamine Agonists
  • Lithium
  • Nicotine
  • Progesterone
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