Aa
A
A
A
Close
Heart Disease Forum
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Avatar universal

Hypoglycmia and palpitations

I'm male, 24, college student, work out about twice a week (skiing, tennis), 6-4, and 200 lbs. I have had stress, anxiety for about three years now. When I feel stressed I get palpitations, I talked to the doctotr about it, and he reccomended we find what kind of palpitations these are. SO now I'm wearing an event monitor, I'm on day 20, anyways, this event monitor has helped me notice a patern. I get multiple palpitations after I eat. If I have a big meal, I get palpitations. I noticed that about a year ago, after I ate my heart rate would increase to a pounding sensation. But now it is palpitations. No one in my family has this.
Can stress bring it (hypoglycmia) on?
Is it the onset of Diabetes?
and WHy does my heart have palpitations after I eat a meal?

It really only happens when I've been at school all day and havn't eaten, and then eat. My neighbor is too nice, when I come home (they are from India) they alwasy give me dessert they made. It is like pure refined sugar (really good), and every time I get these huge palpitations.

ANy reccomendations on controling this?
I'm just now realizing the trend.
22 Responses
Avatar universal
Dear davefeet,
Eating can start a variety of different palpitations.  It is not generally due to the sugar levels or the onset of diabetes but may be related to gastric reflux.  The important thing now is to determine what type of palpitations you are having. Depending on the arrhythmia your doctor may recommend medications or other treatment or perhaps only keeping an eye on things.
Avatar universal
MY HEART STARTED THE RACING IN 1993. AT THE TIME I WAS 32. FROM THAT FIRST DAY IT HAS HAPPENED EVERYDAY SINCE, THOUGH NOW I TAKE TOPROL. HAS HELPED ALOT, BUT STILL GET THE RACING, JUST NOT AS FAST. BEFORE THE MEDICINE, WHEN IT WOULD BEAT FAST, I ALWAYS USED TO FEEL IT OR HEAR IT POUNDING IN MY LEFT EAR. SINCE THE MEDICINE EVEN THOUGH IT MAY GO FAST AT TIME, I DON'T HAVE THE EAR THING. I ALWAYS GET THE FAST HEART RATE ABOUT 15 MINUTES OR SO AFTER I EAT SOMETHING. IT DOESN'T EVEN HAVE TO BE A HEAVEY MEAL. BUT HEAVEY MEALS ARE MUCH WORSE. I ALSO NOTICE IF YOU EAT FAST, THAT PLAYS A PART. I TRY TO EAT LIGHT AND SLOW. IF I DRINK JUST A HALF A GLASS OF WINE, IN A SHORT WHILE, MY HEART BEATS REALLY FAST. MANY DAYS WHEN I GET UP, IT STARTS TO BEAT FAST, AND SOMETIMES I DON'T EVEN WANT TO EAT, BECAUSE I KNOW IT WILL BEAT FAST A SHORT TIME AFTER, BUT YOU HAVE TO EAT, AND SOMETIMES A EMPTY STOMACH CAN BRING ON THE SAME SYMPTONS.
Avatar universal
I just read a letter that Davefeet wrote. I also get a rapid heart beat after eating a meal. I thought I was going crazy, because everytime I asked someone if it happened to them, they looked at me like I have ten heads. Let me say this... I am a very anxious person. There is no doubt that my rapid pulse and my stress have a direct relationship. I am experiencing Premature Ventricular Contractions (PVC's) as I write this letter. I started getting them shortly after noticing the rapid pulse when I eat. I guess I moved up the Cardiac ladder. I started to get the PVC's around the middle of January of 2000. Finally at the end of July of 2001 they stopped. I don't know why they stopped, but they decided to come back about a week ago. So, I went eight Months without them. Anyway, my comment to you is that if you are anything like me, with all the anxiety, pending doom, fears, doubts, insecurities, etc., that could be why you are having those bouts of tachicardia after you eat. Oh, if you are wondering why I use that term "tachicardia" it's because a pulse exceeding 100 BPM is just that. It's from the latin word "Tachi" meaning 100. So, try to find yourself a way to get rid of the Stress. I konw it's easier said than done, but you can do it. Good Luck, Pathedj54
Avatar universal
To JDM. Hi there... I hope I'm not intruding but I read your and had a comment and question at the same time.  I too have posted here in the past since experiencing PVC's/PAC's at the age of 24 (now 28); otherwise healthy.  Since childhood I have been somewhat active with karate, boxing, swimming etc. At age 17 I took up weight trainning on a regular basis mixed with cardio workouts.  I've read that athletes are 10 times more likely to experience heart arriythmia's than the average non-active individual.  I sometimes wonder too if the exercise attributes to this.  On a 2nd stress test at the cardiologists office, I complained that the test was to easy the first time and didn't really "stress" my body to determine a problem.  So I proceeded with a modified bruce protocol to stage 5 which is the highest level.  An hour after the test, I experienced not skipped beats but I believe PAC's, it felt like when breathing in I would take a little extra breath in, I'm not sure but a weird feeling. All I know is that I never pushed myself that hard in a gym.  The point being is that I believe there is a correlation to execise exercise and heart arrythimia's.  But I also believe that it's genetic as well.  Not all professional or Olympic athletes will experience them, probably statiscally a small percentage.  In the past I never bothered checking but I find that after lets say a 5KM (3.5 mile)jog my heart rate will get up to 160 or so.  After stopping within 2 minutes it drops to 100 and stays around 70-80 for 2-3 hours and then back to around 48-52, I've been told by my last visit to a 3rd cardiologist that this is within normal limits. On another note, I'm surprised at how difficult it is for you to recieve the best medical attention.  I'm in Toronto, Canada and you can visit 10 Cardioligist and Medical Centers at your own leasure without any problems.  Our OHIP (Ontario Health Insurance Plan) is free to Ontario residents and covers an unlimited number of medical needs.  I was considering moving to the US but am now discouraged by reading the many posts of medical shortages.  In Canada if you ask for a procedure and demand it, they will listen and waste time and money.

To DAVEFEET: Reading your post, I can releate that eating alot of sugar or carbohydrate I to might experience a skipped heart beat. Not always but on occasion. Though I've never had an episode of elevated heart rate (only while exercising) i'll agree that there is a correlation.  The best thing to do is have a holter monitor test, stress test and echocardiogram.  These tests are all non-evassive and will disclouse most cardiac conditons.  You'll find comfort after testing.  The most important thing to keep in mind is just that... your "mind" - state of mind, anxiety, depression that can create alot of conditions that have nothing to do with your heart but can take their toll if it's long term.  ***@****

Take care all.
Avatar universal
Put me down as another person that notices an increase in heartrate and PVC/PAC's after eating. (I have had PVC and PAC's for about 23 years now)

I had the stress echo test done and all came back normal. I too am wondering if there is a link between blood sugar levels and PVC's.

The other thing I have noticed is they get worse around the start of my menstrual cycle.

I did see a specialist about this and was basically told it was all in my head. Wish he could live in this body for a few weeks, it might change his mind on that comment.
Avatar universal
I hope my experience will be of some value to you.  I am 52 yrs. old now.  I had asthma as a child which I largely outgrew.  At 21 I began to run and then at 24 took up mountaineering and trained very vigorously.  I would run up trails at considerable elevation with 20 or more pounds on my back etc.  At that time I was 5'9" and 165.  I continued backpacking, running, climbing, cross country skiing etc. until about age 35.  At that time I noticed that my pulse would not return to normal after exercise.  No problem during exercise but literally took from 2 to 24 hours to go back to normal.  After a vigorous hike it could stay stuck at 125 for hours.  The docs had no clue.  I basically just shut down my life because I could not stand the continued elevated heart rate.  About 7 years ago I noticed I was getting elevation after eating.  It depends on the size of the meal and can go as high as 95 to 105 at rest.  This continues for hours.  I also discovered a great increase if I have ANY alcohol and also caffeine has a much more pronounced effect.  I have had holters and ECG's . They found no abnormality related to the pulse rate but did find some value insufficiency that they send was benigh.  I developed a profound case of anxiety syndrome over this whole thing along with depression.  About a year ago I started Attenolol 25 mg once a day.  It knocks me on my butt in a single dose so I take it 1/2,1/4,1/4, morning , afternoon, and evening.  My BP is low normal for my age I suppose due to all the exercise early in life except that now I am overweight at 195.  The attenolol puts it at 100/60 or so and pulse as low as 58 to 60.  The docs say this is OK.  The point of all this is that the attenolol reduces the increase following eating and allows the rate to go back to normal after MILD exercise.  I have given up alcohol and caffeine.  My HMO does not or will not do an electrophysiology study on my heart.  They say my higher rate is normal sinus rhythm and not ventricular tach.  I am still freaked out over it.  From all that I have read my present working hypothesis is that I did this to myself because of the excessive aerobic training and stress.  I have read posts about this changing the heart somehow and creating ectopic pacers that become "irritated" by some things like adrenalin, eating, alcohol etc.  I am writing , young man, because I very much wish that when I was your age I had known what was in store for me.  I suspect that my heart rate was going up after meals and alcohol and remaining up after exercise for years prior to my noticing it.  But, like a post in response to yours....once I noticed it I was toast.  I also get the left ear pounding sensation.  Attenolol works for me but it has side effects.  At 24 you might still care about your love life and other forms of vigorous exercise.  It has a profound effect on me in both cases.  I am alive anyway and the attenolol lets me at least eat a meal without dreading the hours of elevated pulse.  Before I connected all the dots I had some very scary episodes when I would eat a large meal after exercise ( even moderate ) and have a glass of wine or two.  Try being in a motel room 1800 miles from home with a sustained heart rate of 150 for hours.  It is called terror.  So now I probably have post traumatic stress disorder as well.  It has toasted my memory among other things.  The doctors at my HMO almost uniformly think that I am nuts.  They have told me over the years that my condition is impossible, caused by mental factors ( not ), etc, etc.  I would advise you to get a job that has health coverage that will let you visit a really fine clinic like the one that sponsors this site.  See some docs who are medical scientists and not just "practicing" whatever that means. People who will look for root causes for you.  You have to pay these folks very well.  Get the insurance!   I wish you luck and I hope that your condition does not go the way of mine.  At any rate I think that you should get a definitive answer regarding the cause of your problem.  This site and others have helped me at least form a hypothesis as to the cause of my collection of symptoms.  Not knowing is a really bad thing.  One doc at the HMO called me a very rude name for trying to be my own doctor.  Heck, they offered not so much as a hypothesis.   What was I to do?  Good luck to you.  As for me I fear greatly for what will develop in the future for me with this condition.  And I used to climb mountains.  Ha.
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
Is a low-fat diet really that heart healthy after all? James D. Nicolantonio, PharmD, urges us to reconsider decades-long dietary guidelines.
Can depression and anxiety cause heart disease? Get the facts in this Missouri Medicine report.
Fish oil, folic acid, vitamin C. Find out if these supplements are heart-healthy or overhyped.
Learn what happens before, during and after a heart attack occurs.
What are the pros and cons of taking fish oil for heart health? Find out in this article from Missouri Medicine.
How to lower your heart attack risk.