Dumping Syndrome: A Rare Disorder

Dated 15 February 2016
Dumping Syndrome: A Rare Disorder

Dumping syndrome is a relatively rare disorder in which the stomach's contents are delivered too quickly to the small intestine. It is a physiological reaction to the consumption of too much simple or refined sugar.

The stomach serves as a reservoir that releases food downstream only at a controlled rate, avoiding sudden large influxes of sugar. Besides, the released food is also mixed with stomach acid, bile, and pancreatic juice to control the chemical makeup of the stuff that goes downstream and avoid all the side effects.

Dumping syndrome classically develops after gallbladder surgery, although it may also occur after other abdominal operations, such as ulcer surgery or surgery for severe reflux. Less frequently, it may be seen in people born with unusually small stomachs and, even more rarely, in those with no stomach abnormalities at all.

Symptoms include nausea and vomiting, sweating, faintness and palpitations, increased heart rate and hypotension. Simple sugars exiting the stomach too rapidly, attract fluid into the upper intestine-your blood fluid volume decreases as it attempts to absorb the sugar.


Try to consume protein rich fluid as half of your fluid intake between meals. (i.e. - 1% or skim milk, nutritional supplements like Ensure or Sugar-Free Carnation Instant Breakfast).
Dumping Syndrome: A Rare Disorder


Preventing Dumping Syndrome:

Making diet changes can be useful in preventing dumping syndrome. The following guidelines are recommended to prevent foods from being emptied from the stomach into the intestines too quickly

  1. Go for the intake of  complex carbohydrates, plus protein and fat to ensure a slow emptying of the stomach, both pre and post exercise. Eat protein rich foods first at each meal to help you maintain your lean body mass as you lose weight. Aim for 60 grams of protein per day.
  2. While exercising, take sugar in a five percent solution to avoid dumping syndrome. Avoid those super drinks or power drinks which flood the market-the sugar solution is too concentrated. Any drink with an action verb probably has too much sugar.
  3. Drink adequate fluids to prevent dehydration. Consume at least 6 cups of fluid per day. (or 48 ounces) Remember to sip slowly. 
  4. Limit concentrated sugars like cookies, cake, pies, sugar, and syrup. Watch out for high calorie liquids such as regular soda, presweetened iced tea, fruit juices, and alcoholic beverages. If these foods are consumed, try to limit them to no more than 2 cups per day. (or 16 ounces) Other foods, such as ice cream and potato chips should also be avoided for this same reason. All of these foods may also cause dumping syndrome.
  1. Eat six small meals daily instead of three large meals.
  2. Eat Slowly.
  3. Drink low sugar beverages slowly between meals. Wait at least one half hour after eating a meal to drink fluids.
  4. Avoid drinking beverages that are too hot or too cold. Beverages at extreme temperatures might worsen symptoms.
  5. Eat adequate amounts of protein and fat.
  6. Lie down for 15 to 20 minutes after a meal to slow the movement of food from the stomach to the intestines.

Dumping syndrome is not dangerous but it feels absolutely horrible, and it is a significant component of the weight loss equation.