Eating, Diet, & Nutrition for Dumping Syndrome

How should I change my eating habits if I have dumping syndrome?

The first step in treating dumping syndrome is changing how and what you eat. Many people with dumping syndrome have mild symptoms that improve over time with simple changes in eating and diet.

Changing how you eat

Your doctor may recommend

  • eating six small meals a day, instead of three larger meals
  • waiting to drink liquids until at least 30 minutes after a meal
  • lying down for 30 minutes after you eat a meal

Woman eating small bowl of fruit and man eating small bowl of cereal.Your doctor may recommend eating six small meals a day, instead of three larger meals.

Changing what you eat

Your doctor may recommend

  • eating more protein, fiber, and fat
  • eating less carbohydrates and choosing foods that contain complex carbohydrates—such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables—rather than foods that contain simple sugars—such as candies, cookies, sugary drinks, and other foods and drinks that have added sugar
  • avoiding milk and milk products
  • adding pectin or guar gum—plant extracts used as thickening agents—to your food
Last Reviewed January 2019
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This content is provided as a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health. NIDDK translates and disseminates research findings to increase knowledge and understanding about health and disease among patients, health professionals, and the public. Content produced by NIDDK is carefully reviewed by NIDDK scientists and other experts.