Chills after eating ?

I am wondering if there are others who experience symtoms related to chills and/or overheatedness related to eating. I was diagnosed with GP based on the results of motiity tests (360 minutes to consume a hard boiled egg) a few years ago.

But I don't have the common symptoms of nausea and vomitting. Instead, I feel weakness, numbness in my feet, mental haziness, and chills immediately after anything goes into my stomach. I also have intense reflux for which I am taking Dexilant. When I take my numerous meds with extra liquid, the chills are immediate. On some days, they fade away. On days like today, I feel chills repeatedly. Oddly, I also have hot flashes occassionally.

Part of the reason my symptoms are different is because my motility problems are caused by a rare hereditary neurologic disorder, which began to affect internal organs a few years ago after affecting my arms and legs for 20 years. My GI doc wanted to send me to Darthmouth Hospital for a bunch of tests to find out exactly what is occurring. But the doctors at the hospital would not give the okay since they claim they'd have no treatment once the data was collected. And of course, there'd be no value is just knowing where the dysfunctions exist. One theory is that emptying is delayed, but then occurs too rapidly for my spastic organs to handle, GP and dumping within the same system. There is also a suggesion that the vagal nerve is impaired and sending false signals from my stomach to my brain, sapping my mental energy. My symptoms are apparently more common in dumping; yet my motility is poor from my throat on down.

I know each of us is dealing with a unique set of symptoms and that we each have to figure out what works best for ourselves. None of the motlity meds have helped. In fact, symptoms occurred more severely or the side effects were horrible. But I've whittled down other symptoms somewhat by timing food intake, adding probiotics, and distracting myself. But I haven't found a way to reduce the chills, even though I often wear a coat indoors at home. So I'd appreciate any suggestions other than turning up the temperature or putting a heating pad over my shoulders.

---- Joe -----

Report post

7 replies. Join the discussion

Just wondering if you've had your thyroid tested? I also got chills as the precursor to my horrible vomiting/nausea attacks- it was one way I knew one was coming on. I would eat, and then maybe 20 minutes later start feeling very weak and chilled, sometimes to the point of shivering, then cramping and loose stools, nausea, and finally vomiting for hours. When the vomiting stopped, I would shake uncontrollably for about two hours.
I also don't have any real answers other than dysmotility based on HIDA and Sitzmarker studies. I'm told nerve and/or muscle damage, probably due to a bad infection in childhood.
Luckily I have found something that helps me (domperidone and desipramine), plus huge diet changes (no wheat, corn, red meat, dairy, chocolate, tomatoes, and so on), probiotics, eating an apple every day at 10 am, very small meals, and of course chewing everything until it is really ground up.
By the way- did you try domperidone? Because I was tried on amitiza (a laxative), and Reglan (motility) and they both made me feel absolutely horrible. Tried miralax and got basically no results. The domperidone is really the only thing that has worked, and other than a little lightheadedness and a bit of cramping the first week or two- no bad effects.
Good luck!

Report post

My daughter had had similar reactions after eating (still does but much better now!) Small meals and diet changes as Wendy has said, and also keeping still and warm after eating allowed her to get her weight back up (still very slim) and energy back somewhat. She also has the vomiting (severe) unless she takes L-arginine supplements prior to each meal. HTH

Report post


Yes, my thyroid was tested and appears to be functioning normally. It is interesting that you say chills occur before episodes of vomiting because when originally asked if was vomiting, I told the doctors it felt like the warning signs that occur before you throw up.

I have taken both Reglan and Domperidone without any benefit. It seemed the symptoms occurred more rapidly and intensely. And the side effects were intolerable. Amitiza brought on nausea and stomach contractions right away, though it seemed to sooth some of the other symptoms. So I am taking nothing but Dexilant and Sucralfate for my stomach.

Miralax seems to work for me as long as I take it consistently. I have also found that my system handles bananas and cucumber well. So they are part of my mid-day meal. The NP at my Gastro practice said that I need some solid food to trigger the digestive process. When I try to live exclusively on liquids, my gut just fills up and my reflux symptoms get worse.

I guess I just wish doctors weren't so comfortable
with not having an answer. Even if some problems are untreatable, I'd like an explanation of just what if going on inside my body. They always use the "its neurologic" excuse. Apparently, the nervous system is just too complicated to understand.

Thanks for the input. Exchanging ideas seems like only way to get helpful information.

--- Joe ----

Report post


I guess staying warm helps. I have been wearing a sweater constantly. But there is still the feeling, the sensation of tingling in my neck and shoulders, even when I feel warm. And putting anything in my stomach other than sips of water is likely to bring the chills on. This seems like a winter symptom though, since it just started recently again after being at a very minimal level for several months. All muscles of my body get stiffer with winter; so maybe that is part of it.

I am happy that you have figured out ways to improve things for your daughter. Dealing with this kind of disorder forces you to be a physician much of the time.

--- Joe ---

Report post

Hi Joe- this just proves how different everyone is- cucumbers are guaranteed to not agree with me! I eat an apple every day at 10 AM like medicine, and I chew it extremely well. It seems to help- apples have an enzyme or something in them that supports digestion. I also have normal thyroid tests, but literally every doctor I've been to in the past 25 years, no matter what department, has suspected thyroid issues. Get the test: normal. But I do take 100 mg (or is it mcg?) of synthroid every day- if I don't take it, after a few days I literally can not get off the couch. There are two distinct rules of thought re: thyroid. Half the docs feel that if your blood tests are normal, you don't have a thyroid issue. The other half feels like numbers are just statistics, if you have all the symptoms of low thyroid, take thyroid and it helps them, then you have some type of sub-clinical thyroid thing going on. I have literally every symptom of low thyroid, no matter how weird or rare, and yet my tests are always perfectly normal.

Report post

Also just thought to add, have you checked out the mitrochondrial syndrome thing? Because that can cause similar symptoms, and also heat intolerance. And I've read that you should never drink cold fluids with meals if you have motility issues- only warm liquids, like green tea.

Report post

Joe, just thinking of how similar this is to my daughters' symptoms. By the way, her GP was caused by lyme as far as we can tell, so symptoms overlap. But the GP - cold thing definitely seems to correlate with eating. My non-medical theory is that it is so difficult for the body to digest and keep warm at the same time that something has to give. It's limited resources are just stretched too thin, especially if underweight. The more burdens you can take off, allowing it to use those precious resources for digestion, the better. Keeping still up to an hour after eating in a somewhat upright position for a few weeks helped her, as well as limiting herself to liquid/fruit on the worst tummy days. Apples/applesause and bananas are her staples. Warm drinks, now that it is cold, too! (Without l-arginine and/or domperidone each meal, it would come back up; chills then would be more related to the energy expended by the vomiting, so it can be hard to pinpoint the cause.) Hope you can stay warm this winter!

Report post

This discussion is closed to replies. We close all discussions after 90 days.

If there's something you'd like to discuss, click below to start a new discussion.

Things you can do

Support AGMD

Help the Association of Gastrointestinal Motility Disorders reach its goals and support people like yourself by making a donation today.

Donate to the Association of Gastrointestinal Motility Disorders



Discussion topics

Helpful links from AGMD

Community leaders