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post-prandial hypotension?


melly4
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I think I have read here that some people with POTS experience drops in BP following eating? I have also read on some medical websites dealing with

POTS that eating small, frequent meals can be helpful.

Yesterday, I went birthday shopping for my oldest son and started feeling rotten. I kept feeling weak in the legs and like I was going to pass out, out-of-body, etc. I kept having to go sit down somewhere. Anyhow, I went home and ate lunch, still felt bad, took my BP, which was 74/44. After dinner later that night, I got similar results, 80/50. Is this because of being on my feet for a long time, eating a big meal, or a combination of both?

I don't know how I could eat small, frequent meals all day long, with 4 kids to take care of!! Also, I'm trying to gain weight, so I typically eat lots of calories at one sittting when I have the time. I thought that would help me feel better. Maybe it's making me worse!! Any suggestions?

Melly

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Hi Melly,

For me if I have to be at a meeting or otherwise up and about I eat light. If I have two hours to rest at lunch I can eat a normal meal. Same with dinner.

When I am particularly POTSY I just don't seem to have the blood volume to do both -- stand and digest.

I keep salty nuts in my purse or I bake my own protien bars. A soy or dairy yogurt mid-day is quick and enough to help me between meals.

The weight eventually comes back on, no need to worry. As I come back out of a set-back my body settles back down and I return gradually to my 'normal' weight. Which for me can drop 20 pounds when I've sunk into a pothole.

Hope you find tasty things to nurish your body on your healing journey.

~EM

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I agree with Earth Mother. I keep quality protein bars (that are low in sugar) or salty nuts with me all the time. If I eat a large meal and then try to stand on my feet for a long time or do something physical, I just don't have enough blood volume to do both. I do much better eating small meals and just kind of snacking lightly throughout the day (I limit refined carbs and sugars).

I've been gaining weight by making high calorie, high protein smoothies in the morning. They add about an extra 400 calories or more to my diet each day. It's definitely helped me gain a few pounds.

Best wishes,

Gena

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Hi Melly,

I can understand that it's difficult to eat small portions during the day, having your kids around! But it is how I do it, mostly against nausea. I eat fruit, protein bars and some special "tricks" that work for me (like carrots), so actually: I'm eating all day :lol: . Still I don't gain weight. My kids know, as I explained them. They also know that they can eat healthy stuff whenever they want, but always within healthy limits.

Good luck on this,

Corina :P

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Melly, I feel awful if I eat a big meal. I graze all day. I have my hubs buy lots of snack type food. But ones that are good for you, as I can't do salt. So little bags of carrots, that type of stuff. What I will do is sometimes I will wrap lunch meat (low salt) around carrots or those cheese stick things. And then I get protein. If I eat one or two of those I feel better, but not rotten. And it only takes a second.

I know the prepared veggies and stuff are more expensive, but it beats not be able to eat, because you have no time or can't stand up long enough. Also, I will drink glucerna when all else fails. I don't believe I've ever taken my bp after meals. I know it was done in the hospital, but my bp was all over the place there. Good luck! morgan

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melly,

it might help you to do a search on this topic and see what others have said on it...it has come up several times before.

i agree with EM and Gena in terms of tips for you...

i don't have too much trouble now that i wear a girdle and support hose! but, i do get very fatigued after eating...as all the blood is in my belly digesting!!! :lol:

although, i'm not exactly upright ever...always mostly in my recliner! so, i guess that i am not much help on this one! sorry!

emily

Gena--those hight protein granola bars you are talking about??? what are they? soy? i don't do too well with soy. but i know you are celiac too, so was wondering if you could pass on your food treats! :P i'm ALWAYS looking for new things! and since i don't do the grocery shopping...i have to pass things on to mom!

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Melly,

This is so familiar. When I'm at my potsy worst I'll black out after meals and throw up because of the drop in blood pressure. It's worse if I have a lot of carbs. But then there are periods of time that I could tolerate food better, as long as I eat only a little at a time. No point taking me to a restaurant for dinner. The doggie bag contenys outweigh what I've managed to eat.

I'm also too thin. The kids pediatrician said he's scared I'm gonna fly off the mountain when the winter winds come in :)

Anyone try increasing fluids with food and notice a difference? Just curious

Ariella

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Thanks, everyone, for the tips. Sounds like I need to become a "grazer" on some high-calorie, salty snacks during the day. Maybe it's not going to be as hard fitting it into my schedule as I think. I don't want to go through another day like yesterday. It was my son's birthday and I was trying my best to feel better and celebratory, but all I wanted to do was fall down in the bed!!

Ariella, that's hilarious about flying off the mountain with the wind!! I hope you don't, but I can relate. My brother sets a place for me at the "kid's table" at family gatherings because I'm so little!! :)

Melly

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Guest Finrussak

small meals often also helps the blood sugar drops that can happen with dysautonomias...and those drops can not only FEEL like a POTsy episode but can also provoke one (ugh). Thats why many of us do better with protein or mixed snacks. If you plan shopping or other upright activity make sure youve had a small snack between 1 and 2 hrs before ( enough time to digest, but not too long either) and protein plus a small amount of carbs works best( fruit with a nut butter;PBJ; balanced bars with a bit higher protein; tuna salad with tortilla chips; cottage cheese and fruit; yogurt etc). Also if you follow hypoglycemic recommendations even without having the hypoglycemia...it will help as well.

When Im really flaring, I actually feel better "empty" until a point, then the weakness, etc sets in...so it may be you have to find a balance as to how empty vs which foods...Plus if too much food volume provokes an attack the vomiting can adversely affect the electrolytes making the episodes WORSE!!!as with all else trial and error- no quick fixes.

Side note: dont bother with glucose tolerance tests which some Drs say can "prove" or disprove hypoglycemias....for POTsy types theyre useless as the assorted chemical snafus we have skew the results both ways!!!

For those on Potassium, or who need it after an episode; Ive tried them all and Ive found the liquid type works best ( and is supposed to have less chance of crystallizing in the gut)...this way I can add to juice etc ( NOT MILK-curdles UGH)

and adjust the dose...after a really bad episode I use more- usually 20 meq; but otherwise I only use 8-10 meq 3-4 times a week....plus did you know some of the tabs can be crushed and dissolved into liquids...ask your pharmacist...the tabs are HUGE/ thick!!!

and Morgan

You are a RIOT...Ive taken to looking for your posts just to cheer me up!!!!!

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Curiously, my mother was diagnosed with hypoglycemia when she was my age. She was having dizziness and syncope. She still has problems. In fact, I had to rush her to the ER this year after she had a "spell". My doc drew a fasting blood glucose on me when I was in there last. I assume it was normal. My BP was not.

Finette has a good point about the timing of meals in relation to planned activities, because I was definitely eating on the run Saturday when I had my bad episode.

Melly

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