Uncontrolled diabetes can cause a number of serious health problems, and one of those includes gastroparesis, i.e. stomach paralysis. Known colloquially as lazy stomach syndrome, this condition slows the emptying of stomach content, leading a number of symptoms including bloating, pain, and vomiting. Although there are a medicines than can help alleviate these issues, here are two simple things you can do to get your stomach working more efficiently again.
Eat Smaller Meals
The stomach is essentially a mixing bowl where all the food you eat is combined together and broken down further by enzymes and stomach acid before being sent to the small intestines for processing. The amount of time it takes the stomach to perform this function directly correlates to how much food you eat (among other things). Thus, the larger the meal, the longer it takes to digest it.
This isn't a problem for people with health stomachs. For those with gastroparesis, however, large meals can cause food to sit in the stomach for abnormal lengths of time, resulting in the symptoms associated with the disease (e.g. bloating, pain, acid reflux). Thus, smaller meals make it easier for the stomach to process the food faster and minimizes the side effects of the condition as a result.
As a bonus, eating smaller meals more frequently can also be immensely helpful with managing your blood sugar levels, so it's worth reworking your food plan so your consuming your calories over six smaller meals rather than three large ones. Additionally, chewing your food thoroughly and drinking liquids can also reduce the work your stomach as to do.
Exercise After Eating
Another simple thing you can do to manage your gastroparesis is to do a bit of exercise after eating. This is because exercise can stimulate the stomach to empty faster, which will prevent your food from sticking around too long and making you sick. Additionally, exercise can stimulate your appetite and help reduce blood sugar levels by making your cells more sensitive to insulin, which can inhibit disease progression.
It doesn't have to be anything strenuous. In fact, strenuous exercise can have an opposite effect and cause the stomach to empty slower. Instead, take a 15-minute walk on a treadmill or around your neighborhood, or participate in other low-impact exercises such as yoga or dancing. Anything that gets your heart pumping and stimulates your muscles will benefit your gastrointestinal health.
For more ideas on simple things you can do to alleviate gastroparesis or more advanced care for the disease, consult with a gastroenterologist.