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Eating and Racing Heart


India
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I have been feeling increasingly unwell for the past three weeks: breathing difficulties, heart skipping about all over the place, dizziness etc etc. I called my cardiologist only to find she has the whole of December off--nice for some. Her assistant's advice was to see my PCP, who hasn't a clue about POTS.

Anyway, this is all a digression. I am feeling somewhat better now--no explanation for why, of course. But the one thing that is persisting that I have not experienced before is that almost every time I eat, my heart races--120 plus--or feels like it is pounding out of my chest. It eventually subsides about an hour after eating and then I feel shakey and very sleepy for a few more hours.

I've had the heart racing, shakes etc before, but it has never been connected to eating. Does anyone have any idea what is going on?

Mele Kalikimaka to all!

India

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I get this all of the time. One thing Vanderbilt advised me to do was to eat small "meals". I pretty much try to snack all day long and eat a small amount of one item at a time.

I still get the tachycardia but not usually in the 150-170's like I was.

Try the small frequent portions and see if this helps you.

My understanding is this is all part of the "fun" package of problems/symptoms we experience and is "normal" in autonomic dysfunction

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I know that when I'm bad with POTS, eating sets my heart off something rotten. My understanding is that when we eat, too much blood rushes to the gut to digest the food- this is called, I think, splanchnic pooling, and it means that blood going there is being taken from elsewhere- so the blood pressure is lowered. Which causes the tachycardia.

I think 'postprandial hypotension' refers to the same phenomenon. (post prandial= latin for 'after dinner'!!)

:)

It's a horrible feeling ,isn't it. I actually stopped eating whole meals a few weeks ago through panic about the racing and pounding. I'm still not eating right now. The weight is falling off me, but my apetite is non existent anyway...

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hi..i also have a problem w. tachy during eating.. and there after.. for a few hours... or sometimes all evening...I dont eat alot at one time.. my meals are small...I have found that some foods that trigger these reactions for me during and after a meal.. like mashed potato's.. or any potato.. meat (beef and pork).. noodles.. andything with carbohydrates in it... starch.. ewww!. and any kind of bread that isnt wheat bread causes problems for me as well.. there are probably more.. but those are the big one.. Oh and hot dogs.. also are a rough one for me..

Oh.. yes.. and for me.. if I drink really cold drink with dinner.. that also sets off tachy...(as does something equally warm/hot..)

I hope that you get somewhere w/ the doc.. and that you feel better soon

Linda

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Guest Finrussak

you may find some foods are worse than others...if it occurs at first bite or 2 I cant see it due to splanchnic pooling as no blood is yet rushing into gut to digest...I was told in that case its more likely hormonal as in glucagon and or insulin...when the first bite arrives at stomach the nerve endings send messages to start releasing digestive enzymes and hormones...THEN blood rushes in...and the combo of both can add to the tachy.

again, keeping a food sx diary helps. Plus as all other sx it can wax and wane. I had horrible tachy and waves of PASSING OUT even with a smal nip of cracker or sip of WATER!!!! and even lying down too.

during the summer...also couldnt eat which didnt help the already malabsorbed malnourished underweight state I was in...

It got better as my other sx improved...and now only occurs if Im feeling particularly bad OR if large meal or very carb rich meal...I find I have to make sure carbs mixed with protein...and avoid especially simple carbs.

you may want to ask your Dr to consider a GTT ( glucose/insulin tolerance tests) or post prandial test ( after eating a set amount of food, or sugery drink UGH-they take several serial bloods for glucose, insulin, glucagon etc). just to make sure its not a hypo/hyperglycemic issue whcih many dysautos have or develop.

It must be very common, so much so that this is the ONE sx I was never doubted on while in my search for tx...even among those unfamiliar with dysauto...funny.

good luck

Finette

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this is huge and i mean huge problem for me, i am hungry most of the time and can never eat a full stomach, coz of the heart pounding and blood pooling and often get terrible headaches, from eating, i take alot of beta blockers before eating, they help, but still feel so much worse after even alittle amount of food, do you take beta blockers? wish i had some magical answer, just wanted to say i totally understand and hope you get some relief, i have lost so much weight, and am very very limited in what i can eat, hang in there,

radha

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:o Thanks for all the replies, guys! On the one hand it's a great comfort to know you're not alone when something wacky like this happens. But on the other hand, it's "disappointing" to me to think I'm getting worse. I believe I've had POTS most of my life, although only recently diagnosed. And I've never had this issue with eating before. It's just something that has quite literally developed over the past three to four weeks. I've had issues with feeling a bit woozy if I've had a really large meal in the past, but nothing like this. I've counted myself lucky as a POTS eater because I haven't suffered the catastrophic weight loss that so many others have, and boy do I enjoy eating! But, as you said Radha and Finnette, sometimes I feel terrible even after eating just a couple of saltines! Other times I can manage decent amounts. Liquids I seem to be able to manage: soup without any veg or meat in it, water etc.

I do take 25mg of atenolol, which I understand is pretty low. Maybe I should talk to my doc--when she returns from her extended vacation--about the dosage.

I was wondering whether the florinef, which I started in August, might be making things worse? I hope not as it has done wonders for the woozies!

India

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My cardio suggested to eat smalls meals and no carbs in the AM, mainly protein and no sugars (for breakfast only) suggested I try it for a short time and I did and for me it seemed to work, symptoms were lessened. She stated the carbs in the morning hours were the culprit for me. some sort of sensitivity to the heavy carbs.

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