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Sudden dizziness after eating - what's going on?

(25 Posts)
flow4 Sun 23-Dec-12 19:54:12

I've just had a nasty episode of dizziness... It came on suddenly towards the end of my meal, and was very intense (I had to put my head on the table and stay still for 10 mins) and is still lingering 40 mins later. I don't get dizzy often, but I have done after eating a few times in the past month or two - but not as badly as this. I was very hungry/low blood sugar before I ate, and I'm wondering if that might have been a factor...?

T'internet suggests it might be 'postprandial hypotension' (i.e. basically, blood pressure in the brain dropping as the stomach uses more blood to digest food)...

Does anyone know anything about this? Has anyone had the same symptoms? Should I get it checked out by a doctor?

Thanks in advance for any advice/info smile

tabbycat15 Mon 24-Dec-12 05:23:46

I would get it checked it incase it could be related to your insulin levels.

flow4 Mon 24-Dec-12 09:47:53

Thanks for your reply, tabbycat. I've been tested for diabetes recently, so I know it's not that...
I've been tested for a lot of things recently sad My iron, vitamin D and thyroid levels are all low, but (after supplements) sub-clinical/insufficient, rather than deficient... This swooping dizziness is new though, and very unpleasant. sad

tabbycat15 Mon 24-Dec-12 10:07:47

Could it be a balance/ inner ear problem.? Maybe it's just been coincidence that you have been eating at the same time. Maybe try. & have small meals throughout the day to keep blood sugar levels constant so that you are not going too long with your stomach empty. See if that makes a difference.

flow4 Mon 24-Dec-12 21:28:13

Funnily enough, I was telling friends about it this evening, and one of them said she'd had the same symptoms, and so had another or our mutual friends. So maybe it's a symptom of some virus...?

BoraBora Mon 24-Dec-12 21:40:25

I had this when I was pregnant! Got so bad in third tri I had to lie down after breakfast...possibility?

flow4 Tue 25-Dec-12 21:21:51

Nope. (Not unless it's an immaculate conception! wink )
But now you come to mention it Bora, I had it during my 2nd pregnancy too (which was so long ago I had forgotten!) - when my blood pressure dropped very low, instead of rising like normal women! I wonder if there's some link...

BoraBora Wed 26-Dec-12 09:01:13

I had really low BP too during pregnancy...

ggirl Wed 26-Dec-12 09:05:13

My husband fainted after a meal in a restaurant , I started a thread about it a month or so ago.
He has never had it before and hasn't had it since.

He still hasn't seen a doctor about it though.

flow4 Wed 26-Dec-12 10:54:55

Interesting that everyone on your thread link here thought it was post-prandial hypotension too ggirl, which seemed the most likely possibility to me.

Bora, my GP at the time said that we don't treat low blood pressure in the UK, only high; but that if I were in Germany or many other European countries, I would be being treated... I suggested that maybe I should eat more salt, and he just laughed... hmm

So my hypothesis is now this: people with generally low blood pressure are at increased risk of dizziness/fainting after eating, as blood is diverted from brain to stomach to digest food... Maybe particularly if the drop in blood pressure is accompanied by sharp rise in blood sugar because the individual was slightly hypoglycaemic before eating...

But I have an appointment with the GP just in case!

mangledmess Wed 26-Dec-12 12:22:47

I have this issue and was told to eat little portions rather than large meals. I have dizzyness when standing up and bending down to pick things up. My GP is not concerned because I do not black out or faint. I was told to rise out of bed slowly and sit until I felt less woozy. Obviously I jump up when the alarm goes off and forget to do this. I am no doctor but I would not advise more salt as it is bad for your heart unless you have a sodium deficiancy which can be detected with blood test. Hope your GP appointment goes well.x

ggirl Wed 26-Dec-12 15:54:33

flow4-would be grateful if you could update after your GP visit please.
Wonder why it only happens occassionally , dh has had plenty of large meals recently and no ill effects.

flow4 Wed 26-Dec-12 21:23:03

Thanks mangled. I was only joking about the salt! smile
ggirl - I will do. It's next week. And it hasn't happened to me again since I posted, either, despite an enormous Christmas dinner... And I haven't experienced the low blood sugar symptoms that I had before, either.

PowerPants Wed 26-Dec-12 23:04:17

Look into POTS or postural tachycardia syndrome.

flow4 Thu 27-Dec-12 02:01:08

I've looked at a few things online now PowerPants, thanks - including this: www.patient.co.uk/health/postural-orthostatic-tachycardia-syndrome... Doesn't seem quite like this to me - it happened without me moving/standing up... Do you have a particular reason for suggesting it?

Dottiespots Thu 27-Dec-12 03:08:00

Some people are advised to eat more salt when they have low blood pressure.

rubyrubyruby Thu 27-Dec-12 03:48:03

I have low blood pressure and often feel dizzy after eating. I also feel faint if I hurt myself or have a massage etc
It's definitely to do with my body being put under strain of any kind

flow4 Thu 27-Dec-12 12:48:41

Are they awsangel, that's interesting. I had a whole batch of blood tests recently, so I'll look and see if they tested my sodium levels, and if they're low, maybe I'll consider that too...

ruby, that's interesting too... I feel wobbly after a massage too, and especially after a reflexology treatment... Maybe my blood pressure, which is generally just a bit on the low side, has dropped lower...?

rubyrubyruby Thu 27-Dec-12 12:53:00

Possibly - might be worth getting it checked, not that they will do anything!

Mine is low and the doc said it dropped lower when I stood up. I often feel 'strange' after eating and if I cut myself or bash my toe or whatever I just lie on the floor in preparation grin damage limitation for if I pass out.

sonsmum Thu 27-Dec-12 14:25:00

my aunt had this and in addition to feeling dizzy, passed out unconsious. We thought she had died and called an ambulance, was very frightening. However ambulance man said it is very common for 'ladies of a certain age' to get dizzy and faint and that eating a large meal in a warm room is a contributary factor. I think it is worth you mentioning this to your doctor, as i think everyone would want to prevent this happening else would never eat out again!

flow4 Thu 27-Dec-12 14:31:38

grin at 'ladies of a certain age', sonsmum! But I am one, I suppose no, no I'm NOT: I'm 23 still really!

I haven't actually fainted - I don't think I've ever done that in my whole life - just had horrible swooping dizziness and nausea, and felt like I might faint.

I have an appointment with the GP next week, so I'll see what she says...

sonsmum Thu 27-Dec-12 14:39:32

the ambulance man just said 'ladies of a certain age'. my aunt must be 65ish.
Perhaps the dizziness/nausea is the first warning sign, and if you don't fit down, lower your head etc you can pass out. Best to talk to your GP just to make them aware, am sure it is nothing serious but maybe they can just check all
your levels etc and see if anything can be done to prevent this happening, can't be nice.

PowerPants Fri 28-Dec-12 22:17:21

flow4 - you can have POTS even if you only get dizziness after meals. Look up poor man's tilt table on google. In a nut shell this is a POTS test - you lie down taking your pulse and then stand up - if your pulse goes up by 30 bpm or more you may well have POTS.

rubyrubyruby Fri 28-Dec-12 22:52:49

PMSL @ 'ladies of a certain age'

Yep - that's me

flow4 Sat 29-Dec-12 18:53:36

Thanks Power. I'm rubbish at taking my pulse, but I shall try! smile
GP's appointment is on Mon... Luckily she is a 'lady of a certain age' too! grin

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