What causes dizziness after eating?

Written by hannah wickford | 13/05/2017
What causes dizziness after eating?
Eating too many carbohydrates can result in episodes of hypoglycaemia (Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of Sonya Green)

Physicians advise a healthy diet for many reasons beyond prevention of weight gain. When we eat, our bodies go into overtime to digest the food and absorb the essential nutrients and vitamins. A hormone imbalance or medical issue with any of the organs involved in digestion can cause complications after eating, including extreme dizziness.


There are many medical conditions that can cause dizziness after eating including gastritis, osteoarthritis and heart disease. The most common cause for dizziness after eating is hypoglycaemia.


Carbohydrates convert to glucose in the bloodstream. The pancreas secretes a hormone called insulin in response to the blood glucose. The insulin bonds with the blood glucose which then converts to energy to feed the body.


After eating a meal, particularly a meal high in carbohydrates, the pancreas goes into overtime to produce enough insulin to keep up with the rising blood glucose levels. It frequently secretes too much insulin sending blood glucose levels below normal range.


Hypoglycaemia that occurs only after eating a meal in an otherwise healthy person is called reactive hypoglycaemia. According to the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, diabetes-related hypoglycaemia can also result in dizziness after eating.


If blood glucose levels fall below 70 mg/dl (milligrams of glucose to decilitres of blood), ingestion of simple carbohydrates such as juice, hard candy or regular soda is called for. Consult a physician for an in-depth exam and treatment plan.

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