Eating, Diet, & Nutrition for Gastroparesis

How can my diet help prevent or relieve gastroparesis?

What you eat can help prevent or relieve your gastroparesis symptoms. If you have diabetes, following a healthy meal plan can help you manage your blood glucose levels. What you eat can also help make sure you get the right amount of nutrients, calories, and liquids if you are malnourished or dehydrated from gastroparesis.

What should I eat and drink if I have gastroparesis?

If you have gastroparesis, your doctor may recommend that you eat or drink

  • foods and beverages that are low in fat 
  • foods and beverages that are low in fiber
  • five or six small, nutritious meals a day instead of two or three large meals
  • soft, well-cooked foods

If you are unable to eat solid foods, your doctor may recommend that you drink

  • liquid nutrition meals
  • solid foods puréed in a blender

Your doctor may also recommend that you drink plenty of water or liquids that contain glucose and electrolytes, such as

  • low-fat broths and clear soups
  • low-fiber fruit and vegetable juices
  • sports drinks
  • oral rehydration solutions

If your symptoms are moderate to severe, your doctor may recommend drinking only liquids or eating well-cooked solid foods that have been processed into very small pieces or paste in a blender.

What should I avoid eating and drinking if I have gastroparesis?

If you have gastroparesis, you should avoid

  • foods and beverages that are high in fat
  • foods and beverages that are high in fiber
  • foods that can’t be chewed easily
  • carbonated, or fizzy, beverages
  • alcohol

Your doctor may refer you to a dietitian to help you plan healthy meals that are easy for you to digest and give you the right amount of nutrients, calories, and liquids.

January 2018
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This content is provided as a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health. The NIDDK translates and disseminates research findings through its clearinghouses and education programs to increase knowledge and understanding about health and disease among patients, health professionals, and the public. Content produced by the NIDDK is carefully reviewed by NIDDK scientists and other experts.

The NIDDK would like to thank:
Michael Camilleri, M.D., Mayo Clinic, Rochester