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When Diabetes Causes Stomach Problems

Over time, diabetes can affect many parts of your body. One of those is the vagus nerve, which controls how quickly your stomach empties. When it's damaged, your digestion slows down and food stays in your body longer than it should.

This is a condition called gastroparesis. It can make you feel queasy and vomit. It's also bad for your blood sugar levels.

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Although it's more common in people with type 1 diabetes, people with type 2 can also get it.

Most people with gastroparesis have had diabetes for at least 10 years and also have other complications related to the disease.

Symptoms

You may have:

Complications

Food that stays in your stomach too long can spoil and lead to the growth of bacteria.

Undigested food can harden and form a lump called a bezoar. It can block your stomach and keep what you eat from moving into the small intestine.

Gastroparesis can make it hard to control diabetes. When food finally does leave your stomach and enter the small intestine, your blood sugar goes up, too.

Vomiting can also leave you dehydrated.

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If the level is below 70 or you are experiencing symptoms such as shaking, sweating or difficulty thinking, you will need to raise the number immediately. A quick solution is to eat a few pieces of hard candy or 1 tablespoon of sugar or honey. Recheck your numbers again in 15 minutes to see if the number has gone up. If not, repeat the steps above or call your doctor.

People who experience hypoglycemia several times in a week should call their health care provider. It's important to monitor your levels each day so you can make sure your numbers are within the range. If you are pregnant always consult with your health care provider.

Congratulations on taking steps to manage your health.

However, it's important to continue to track your numbers so that you can make lifestyle changes if needed. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

Your level is high if this reading was taken before eating. Aim for 70-130 before meals and less than 180 two hours after meals.

Even if your number is high, it's not too late for you to take control of your health and lower your blood sugar.

One of the first steps is to monitor your levels each day. If you are pregnant always consult with your physician.

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