Gastroparesis is a condition which affects the normal spontaneous movement of the muscles in the stomach. It results in poor emptying of food from the stomach into the intestine and inadequate grinding of food by the stomach.
In the US, about 1 in 4 adults has symptoms which resemble those of gastroparesis.
Signs and symptoms of the condition include:
- weight loss;
- lack of appetite;
- changes in blood sugar (glucose) levels;
- abdominal pain;
- abdominal bloating;
- acid reflux;
- vomiting undigested food eaten a few hours earlier;
- a feeling of fullness after eating just a few bites.
You should seek a health care provider’s help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms:
- severe cramping or pain in the abdomen;
- difficulty breathing;
- blood glucose levels which are too low or too high;
- feeling extremely weak;
- vomiting for more than 60 minutes;
- sudden, sharp stomach pain which doesn’t go away;
- vomit which looks like coffee grounds;
- red blood in your vomit.
Gastroparesis is not only an uncomfortable condition but it can also cause numerous complications, such as:
- reduced quality of life;
- blood sugar abnormalities;
- bacterial overgrowth in the stomach due to undigested food;
- malnutrition, due to a poor absorption;
- hardened, undigested food which can form a solid mass;
- severe dehydration, due to vomiting;
- muscle weakness;
- poor wound healing;
- electrolyte imbalances;
- a weakened immune system;
- decreased urine output;
- rapid breathing;
- increased heartbeat;
- decreased blood pressure.
The condition can be caused either by diseases of the nerves which control the muscles or the stomach’s muscles, but, usually, no specific cause is identified.
Certain factors that can increase the risk, such as:
- vagus nerve surgery or damage;
- uncontrolled diabetes;
- eating disorders;
- certain psychological disorders;
- hypothyroidism (a common endocrine disorder that results from a deficiency of thyroid hormone);
- a complication from an esophageal surgery;
- medical treatments, like radiation therapy;
- viral infection;
- stomach surgery;
- conditions like multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, scleroderma, and amyloidosis.
- pramlintide (an injectable amylin analog drug for diabetes);
- some medications used to treat overactive bladder;
- some anticholinergics — these medications inhibit parasympathetic nerve impulses;
- some antidepressants, like – nortriptyline (sold under the brand names Aventyl, Noritren, Allegron, Pamelor, and Nortrilen), amitriptyline, and venlafaxine;
- narcotic pain medicines, like – tapentadol (a centrally acting opioid analgesic of the benzenoid class), codeine, morphine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone.
Healthcare professionals diagnose the condition based on a physical exam, medical history, as well as your symptoms. Also, your healthcare professional will probably want to run some medical tests, such as:
- an upper endoscopy – during this test, your healthcare professional guides a scope down the esophagus and into the stomach;
- blood tests to check for diabetes and other medical conditions;
- an ultrasound – to rule out pancreatitis (a pathologic inflammation of the pancreas), liver disease, and gallbladder disease.
The following medications may be prescribed to help improve the symptoms:
- anti-emetics – these medications are used to control nausea;
- erythromycin – this drug is effective for the treatment of bacterial infections. Also, it is an antibiotic which helps the stomach to contract;
- domperidone (sold under the brand name Motilium) – it is taken before eating to contract the stomach muscles.
Here Is A List Of 10 Essential Oils For Gastroparesis:
It is effective in stimulating energy levels and digestive function.
Note – clove essential oil is considered one of the safest essential oils for digestion.
It can help people with IBS symptoms such as constipation and diarrhea. Also, cumin oil is excellent for stomach cramps, pain, and detoxing.
It is believed to increase thermogenesis, help tone the digestive system, and improve metabolism. Also, ginger essential oil is thought to be a natural and effective remedy for indigestion, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.
This essential oil helps with the functioning of the immune system by improving digestive performance.
The anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties of coriander essential oil provide relief from abdominal pain and spasms, digestive upset, flatulence, and indigestion.
This oil helps improve digestion when rubbed on the tummy or inhaled.
It has healing properties and is anti-inflammatory in nature. When it comes to the digestive system, lavender essential oil protects against dysbiosis and other digestive issues.
It can eliminate gas in the intestines. Also, this oil eases the cramping pain and reduces bowel inflammation.
Peppermint essential oil is very effective in digestion as it has a carminative attribute of expelling intestinal gas. Also, it can be combined with basil essential oil to enhance the movement through the digestive tract.
This essential oil is similar to peppermint oil with its high menthol content and nausea pain alleviating properties which help reduce stomach aches.
A dietitian can recommend the foods which your body can digest more easily, allowing your physical body to absorb more essential nutrients. Some of the suggestions may include the following:
- substitute solid foods for liquid or pureed foods;
- eat 4 to 6 meals a day;
- ensure there is sufficient time after meals before lying down for bed;
- avoid foods which have no dietary fiber, like animal products (meat, eggs, and dairy products);
- eat mostly low-fat foods and avoid junk foods, such as – hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries, mayonnaise, margarine, doughnuts, cakes, burritos, onion rings, or pizzas;
- eat well-cooked vegetables;
- avoid alcoholic beverages, sodas, sports drinks, energy drinks, coffee, and carbonated beverages.
This fruit is rich in papain and bromelain, that helps in the protein breakdown process to digest the food correctly. Interestingly, papaya is known as the ”fruit of the angels” for its powerful natural properties.
It escalates the process of emptying the stomach. Also, it is used to treat gastric problems such as stomach pain, diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, and nausea.
It helps relieve stomach pain and bloating and its laxative nature promotes a healthy functioning of the digestive system and regulates bowel movements.
It has been found to help with blood sugar (glucose) control, making it a good natural therapy for treating diabetic gastroparesis.