Soup Therapy for Gastroparesis

My blood sugars started bouncing around like a basketball a of couple week ago. After meals my blood sugar level would sometimes drop as low as 1.7 mmol/L (30 mg/dL). Then, 12-15 hours later, rise to 11 mmol/L (198 mg/dL). My gastroparesis condition was causing my stomach to delay its emptying for up to 15 hours (about 14 hours after the meal bolus hit my bloodstream).

So we introduced another experiment: Soup Therapy. It has a better ring than baby food (or something even less appetizing).

We are blending all my meals into a pureed vegetable soup. Everything except for the chicken and meatballs. John even blends tuna into the vegetable soup. I think tuna tastes better all blended. I know, I know I should probably blend the chicken and beef, but I want something to chew.

I reread the section on gastroparesis in Dr. Bernstein’s Diabetes Solution (chapter 22). I don’t know about you but I find he has so much information it is hard to assimilate it all. Some pointers he gives, I used to do, but neglected once the gastroparesis improved. For example, I’ve returned to doing the stomach exercises (after meals) that he recommends.

John also found some information about lying on the right side after meals. This allows gravity to help move food through the pyloric valve from the stomach into the intestines.

Other suggestions I’ve found include: walking for an hour after a meal, chewing gum (we know where that lead me the last time), and different medications (not interested in those because of their side effects and short-term benefits).

Dr. Bernstein also says that some of his patients find red meat to be hard to digest. Dr. Natasha McBride-Campbell feels that chicken is the easiest to digest. I must say, this seems to be true. The red meat seems to take longer to empty into my duodenum.

Anyway, I don’t mind the soup therapy. John has made the soups quite delicious using many low carb veggies like watermelon radish, daikon, cauliflower and broccoli (though we have decided my body is having trouble with broccoli). I find the low-carb root vegetables the easiest to digest. I also have a few ounces of high-carb carrots and onions…which make the soups very tasty indeed. Even with the small amount of carrots, I’m keeping my carbs at 30 grams a day.

Of course, other tasty vegetables like squash, zucchini and beets I must avoid. They contain too much potassium to safely eat on dialysis.

Since switching to the soup therapy my stomach has been emptying 45 minutes after a meal. My blood sugars have been very stable — averaging around 5.0 mmol/L (90 mg/dL).

Reading and researching all the information is great. But you must still see what works with your body. That takes experimenting and not being afraid to do it. Any expert can’t have the right prescription for every single person. The main thing is too be open to trying new things and implementing what workse.

Even though you may agree with everything in your mind the hardest thing is too put it into action and not worry if you make mistakes.

About the Author: John C. A. Manley researches and writes about alternative treatments for type-1 diabetes and its many complications. His wife, Nicole, of 15 years has had type-1 diabetes for four decades. Together they have lowered her HgbA1c below 5.5%, regained thyroid function, increased kidney function and reversed gastroparesis. Read more about their journey out of the T1D matrix or subscribe to their Diabetic Dharma blog..