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Published On: Tue, Jan 23rd, 2018

From exhaustion to ‘gastric emptying’ – dietitian reveals the concerning side effects of overeating

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By Jacob Polychronis

With delicious Christmas feasts just around the corner, people across the nation are collectively preparing to loosen their belt buckles.
But gluttons can expect to suffer a range of unpleasant side effects if they succumb to one too many servings of roast, an expert has revealed.
Speaking to FEMAIL, practising dietitian Geraldine Georgeou, from Designer Diets, listed five key side effects our bodies experience when we overeat.

1. TIREDNESS
Ms Georgeou said a common side effect to over-eating is a feeling of lethargy, colloquially known as a ‘food coma’.
‘By binge eating, you’ll find that you get a big glucose hit and start producing excess insulin,’ she said.
‘What will then happen is that you will have a big glucose crash, as the insulin moves it out of your system really quickly.’
Ms Georgeou said this is why people who overeat often feel like they need a nap soon after.

2. RAPID GASTRIC EMPTYING
Those who gorge themselves in one sitting may find that they have to run to the toilet shortly after.
This is due to rapid gastric emptying, otherwise known as ‘dumping syndrome’.
‘Rapid gastric emptying occurs when you have a lot of sugar in one hit and when your stomach over-fills,’ Ms Georgeou said.
‘Overeating can cause sugar to move from your stomach into your bowel too quickly, pulling in fluid in which can give you diarrhea.’
Ms Georgeou also pointed out that people with irritable bowel syndrome are more susceptible to ‘dumping’.

3. BLOATING
People who overeat or don’t chew their food properly are likely to fall victim to the feeling of ‘having a food baby’.
Ms Georgeou said people at Christmas time often don’t think about how much they are consuming and subsequently begin to feel bloated.
She also urged people to take care with what and how much they are drinking.
‘Be mindful that having fizzy drinks alongside your meal can create more gas and make you feel more bloated,’ she said.

4. NAUSEA
Arguably the most unpleasant reaction to overeating we experience is the feeling of nausea.
Ms Georgeou said we begin to feel nauseous when we overeat due to the over-consumption of fat.
‘Fat takes the longest to digest and can create delayed gastric emptying,’ she said.
‘Excess fat consumption will require a lot of digestion which can make you feel uncomfortable or sick, especially if you have underlying gallbladder problems.’
Do you ever find yourself tossing and turning in bed after a big meal?
Well Ms Georgeou said there’s a reason for that too, and it relates to the impact of food on your glucose and sugar metabolism.
‘When you have a large intake of carbohydrates, you have a big surge of glucose – but when you try to sleep it has a big drop and this can wake you up,’ she said.
‘That can impact your glucose and sugar metabolism and disrupt your sleep.’

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