A small particle size diet reduces upper gastrointestinal symptoms in patients with diabetic gastroparesis: a randomized controlled trial

Am J Gastroenterol. 2014 Mar;109(3):375-85. doi: 10.1038/ajg.2013.453. Epub 2014 Jan 14.


Objectives: Gastroparesis is a well-known complication to diabetes mellitus (DM). Dietary advice is considered to be of importance to reduce gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms in patients with diabetic gastroparesis, but no randomized controlled trials exist. Our aim was to compare GI symptoms in insulin treated DM subjects with gastroparesis eating a diet with small particle size ("intervention diet") with the recommended diet for DM ("control diet").

Methods: 56 subjects with insulin treated DM and gastroparesis were randomized to the intervention diet or the control diet. The patients received dietary advice by a dietitian at 7 occasions during 20 weeks. GI symptom severity, nutrient intake and glycemic control were measured before and after the intervention.

Results: A significantly greater reduction of the severity of the key gastroparetic symptoms-nausea/vomiting (P=0.01), postprandial fullness (P=0.02) and bloating (P=0.006)-were seen in patients who received the intervention diet compared with the control diet, and this was also true for regurgitation/heartburn (P=0.02), but not for abdominal pain. Anxiety was reduced after the intervention diet, but not after the control diet, whereas no effect on depression or quality of life was noted in any of the groups. A higher fat intake in the intervention group was noted, but otherwise no differences in body weight, HbA1c or nutrient intake were seen.

Conclusions: A small particle diet improves the key symptoms of gastroparesis in patients with diabetes mellitus. (ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01557296).

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Anxiety Disorders / physiopathology
  • Depressive Disorder / physiopathology
  • Diabetes Complications / diagnostic imaging
  • Diabetes Complications / diet therapy*
  • Diabetes Complications / physiopathology
  • Diet, Diabetic*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Female
  • Gastroparesis / diagnostic imaging
  • Gastroparesis / diet therapy*
  • Gastroparesis / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Insulin / therapeutic use*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Particle Size
  • Quality of Life
  • Radionuclide Imaging
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Upper Gastrointestinal Tract / physiopathology*


  • Insulin

Associated data

  • ClinicalTrials.gov/NCT01557296