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What's causing post-meal crashing?

Discussion in 'Post-Exertional Malaise, Fatigue, and Crashes' started by CBS64, Jul 6, 2011.

  1. CBS64

    CBS64

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    I have been having severe post-meal crashing for several weeks and haven't been able to figure out what's going on. About 15 minutes or so after eating, my brain literally shuts down (I can't think at all) and my body feels so week that I have to lie down immediately. It takes at least 2 to 3 hours of resting to recover and feel "normal" again.

    I have been on a gluten, dairy and sugar-free diet for many years and avoid foods I'm allergic to. I also eat a high protein, low-carb diet. I've been on a rotation diet for many years, so I eat the same thing rotated every few days. It's been happening every day, so it doesn't seem to matter what I eat.

    Does anyone have an idea as to what might be causing this?
     
  2. floydguy

    floydguy Senior Member

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    I can't offer any help but maybe some sympathy as this happens to me. Almost always at dinner. I have my dinner get extremely tired and fall asleep with minutes of eating. Happens no matter what I eat.
     
  3. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    I hope someone replies to this. I've read in the past couple of days about a piece of research on this very subject, it explains the physical process within the body and the symptoms such as yours - but where?? Sorry - not much use really....
     
  4. JPV

    JPV Senior Member

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    Have you experimented with digestive enzymes? Also, eating more frequent and smaller meals may help.
     
  5. CBS64

    CBS64

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    I have been taking digestive enzymes for a while, so that base is covered. My rotation diet has been exactly the same for the last year or two, so I'm eating the same proportions of food. Since the crashing symptom started in the last month or so, I don't think the amount of food is a factor. But I have heard that it's usually better for people to eat frequent smaller meals.

    The reaction is happening too quickly to be a gut problem -- it starts in about 15 minutes. I thought it might be related to the adrenals or blood sugar, but I've tried to do some things to support the adrenals (like drinking salt water and taking adrenal remedies) and it doesn't seem to help. The fact that my brain completely shuts down makes me think something biochemical is happening, but I don't know what it could be.

    Anyway, I would greatly appreciate anyone else's thoughts on this as it's been completely incapacitating.
     
  6. kurt

    kurt Senior Member

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    Hmm, if your HCl is fine, maybe a new dysbiosis in the small intestine, probably combined with leaky gut and a leaky BBB. 2-3 hours is the clue, that is about how long it takes for a meal to transit mostly through the small intestine.

    see: http://www.vivo.colostate.edu/hbooks/pathphys/digestion/basics/transit.html

    I'm not sure how to interpret that diagram and table (at the end of the link page), but I assume the numbers overlap, and food starts getting into the small intestine as soon as it is leaving the stomach. So, assuming a 15 minute lag or so, the 2.5-3.0 hour transit time for the small intestine could match up well with the timing of your symptoms.
     
  7. kurt

    kurt Senior Member

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    If your symptoms start so soon after eating there has to be some gut involvement. Total brain fog suggests a vascular response in the brain, to whatever is coming from the gut so fast. And as I just posted above, I would suspect a small intestinal problem is letting something get into the blood that is triggering a vaso-constriction response in the brain (hypoperfusion). I take a natural vasodilator with or after a meal sometimes, usually a little cinnamon.
     
  8. JPV

    JPV Senior Member

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  9. JPV

    JPV Senior Member

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    Apparently a tremendous amount of blood is shifted to the gut when food is being digested. This may account for brain fog symptoms. I've read that deep breathing just before and after a meal can alleviate such symptoms.
     
  10. hope love light

    hope love light

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    Low Blood Volume is my guess.... once you eat all the blood is going to your gut for digestion.
    It happens to me too the brain fog and having to lay down for quite awhile until I can digest.
    Not to mention that digestion takes alot of energy.

    Hugs,
    Hope
     
  11. alice1

    alice1 Senior Member

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    I went through this during our winter months.It just stopped one day.
    Hopefully yours will disappear soon.
     
  12. JPV

    JPV Senior Member

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    Here is a reader comment, that I found on someone's blog, that has some interesting info related to this subject...

    http://blogginginparis.com/2006/03/29/getting-sleepy-after-eating/#comment-616

     
  13. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    you've got some great info so far but I wanted to add a little ...

    I'd look at other food intolerances since you know that you're already sensitive to gluten and dairy. Leaky gut is responsible for food intolerances so whatever we eat regularly can cause other intolerances. Soy and corn are common but it's pretty much up to each individual ...

    I'm not a fan of the rotation diet. I don't have antibodies to dairy but if I eat even a small amount of dairy, I get black marks under my eyes that last for 7 - 10 days. And it takes me at least a week to get over a gluten reaction. It took me 3 weeks when I first went GF. IMHO ... Whoever came up with the rotation diet didn't take into consideration that it takes our bodies time to heal after each assault.

    Also, it's not unusual for someone to feel "better" when they eliminate gluten, etc only to find out later that all carbs including grains and legumes, are a problem. This is how I ended up on the Paleo / low carb diet after 2 years of the GFCF + diet.

    I take digestive enzymes and probiotics but I still have to lay down flat after I eat a meal. My recooperation time is 30 minutes though. After which I feel great until I wear myself out ... lol ... hth ... x
     
  14. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    I get the same post meal crashing. I used to think it was blood sugar/insulin related as I am borderline diabetic, but I don't think so. Huge meals don't always do it, small meals - even tiny meals - can sometimes induce a crash. Similarly high carb or low carb makes no difference for me. I do tend to get it less on meals with higher fat content, but this could just be coincidence. Most days I do not have this problem, but every time I have eaten the last several days I have been forced to sleep about three hours afterwards.

    I suspect it is either about blood-flow, in which too much blood is going to the digestive tract, or cytokines, in that something in the food can trigger the wrong kind. Blood pooling in the gut seems the most likely of these two. However, since for me this is not related to meal size, or carb content, I guess it is another regulation problem sometimes seen in ME or CFS. So I tentatively put it down to another autonomic problem.

    Bye
    Alex
     
  15. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    HI Alex

    I'm really not all that familiar with glucose issues but I know it can take awhile for our bodies, livers especially, to recover from eating too many carbs. It took me several months to feel good on the low carb diet. And I never could go no carb, semi ketogenic, because my brain needs carbs ... I have petite mals without carbs.

    I have PEM brain today so I'm probably not going to say this right ... lol ... but the reason a high fat meal is better is that it blocks our bodies from absorbing so much glucose at one time. I HAVE to eat a protein or fat source if I eat any fruit (limitted too) or else I get that fuzzy headed feeling. I have hyperinsulemia (over production of insulin) diagnosed via a GTT + insulin test.

    hth ... x
     
  16. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Hi xchocoholic, it is not glucose absorption from the fats, as it is very fast - half an hour to an hour before I could react to glucose much. I get this reaction to a single segment of mandarin as well, in minutes - so little glucose that it is not an issue. I think it is some kind of chemical trigger, similar to MCS issues (an intolerance not allergy) that induces an autonomic over-reaction. This is really a neural-brain thing that mis-regulates the blood flow in my opinion. Higher fat meals for me can be just a steak - nothing else. Or some coconut. Or the extra virgin olive oil I cook with. Sometimes some cheese. There may be something here related to protein intake - I am wondering if too low a protein intake might induce this. Bye, Alex
     
  17. lucy

    lucy Senior Member

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    I was told that if the body has very low energy and needs to digest food, other parts are deprived of proper blood supply. Also, intestine is a muscle too, and it needs fair amount of energy to contract and relax in order to push the food.
    For me, small meals help. Moreover, I had this symptom even before getting sick, then I lived on vegetarian diet for a year to see if it was any better (partly).
     
  18. xchocoholic

    xchocoholic Senior Member

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    Alex,

    I react to a single slice of mandarin orange too ... What happens is that my body freaks out when it sees any glucose and OVERPRODUCES insulin ... which means it will take time for my body to eliminate all that excess insulin. My doctor described it to me by saying that my body sends out 8 guys to bring in 2 bags of groceries from the car ... lol ...

    Having a GTT + insulin made this perfectly clear for me. I felt like crap right after I drank the glucose solution. I thought I was going to vomit ... Then I went into hyper mode for a little while. Then I crashed ... when I crashed I couldn't hold my eyes open. I was sooooo sleepy ... But once my body had taken care of the extra insulin and adjusted my glucose back to normal the roller coaster feeling stopped. I was still shakey at the end of the GTT but my glucose was a little low. I had to eat a real meal to even start feeling normal again.

    That was my last GTT. On my first one a few years prior, they had to call my doc to see if she wanted to proceed because I was passing out before the test ... I credit the paleo / low carb diet with helping me regulate my fasting glucose. It's been proven to help glucose regulation ...

    I'm sure that there are nuerological complications to too much or too little glucose. Our cells need glucose to function ... it's the roller coaster glucose / insulin rush that messes with me if I don't watch what I eat ...

    An immune system reaction can cause neuro problems too but if you keep an eye on your diet you should be able to figure this out. But you have to get to the point where you're not reacting to everything before you can determine the lesser infractions. Gluten, dairy, corn, soy, chemicals like HFCS, MSG, etc, grains and legumes were keeping my body in an over reactive state and not allowing me to pick up on the smaller reactions ...

    There is a delicate glucose / fat / protein balance some of us need to maintain. It's a matter of trial and error ... I know now that if I eat 2" of a banana then I need to eat 2 large brazil nuts to counteract the insulin rush. Other nuts won't work as well and I need to eat 2. Meat works too but that's not as convenient ...

    tc ... x
     
  19. svetoslav80

    svetoslav80 Senior Member

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    Hmm I've always had a post meal crash since I'm sick, but that's normal for me cause I eat a lot. Digestion takes lots of energy. I guess this is not your case cause you've been experiencing this only recently ...
     
  20. TinyT

    TinyT Senior Member

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    Do you have a problem with OI or POTS?

    I have POTS and have noticed a worsening of the 'food coma' that occurs post meals. Like someone already mentioned, a great deal of blood is being shifted to the stomach for digestion. This makes my POTS worse.

    Having small meals and light food (avoiding heavy carbs) helps some
     

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