Need advice regarding not eating

I am hoping that someone in here can help me please
I had a stroke in Nov 22
In January I suddenly became unable to eat anything due to it not tasting right - an awful vile taste in my mouth and my tolerance to smell was heightened
After a long wait to see consultant - I saw a junior doctor and when I told him I was not eating at all and was tired and had no energy
He said was not stroke related
I have lost over two stone and am currently taking a meal supplement from H and B - I cannot drink any flavoured drinks only water and milk.
I am a type 2 diabetic and after waiting two weeks to see doctor I have been referred to a dietician
I am praying that someone here as experienced the same problem
Thank you x


Hi, so sorry to hear of your stroke,welcome to our forum. We are a merry band of stroke survivors of all different ages and very different stages of recovery.

Your issue with not wanting to eat and losing weight is very common following a stroke.

I’m 6 years post stroke and although things have greatlyimproved since my stroke I still find I don’t really feel hungry and often have to force myself to eat. I lost a stone when I was in hospital but have since put that back on and am now trying to lose some weight. I have also found that I struggle with the different textures of food. Unfortunately I didn’t lose my love of chocolate :rofl:

I found that my sense of taste has changed and I no longer enjoy some of the things you used to enjoy eating.

It’s very early days for your recovery, 'm sure things will improve for you gradually and the dietician will be able to offer some advice.
I wish you well in your recovery, this is a great place to ask questions or have a rant if you feel the need.

Regards Sue

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Hi @chelsea05

I just wanted to let you know that we do have some information on our website about changes to taste and smell after a stroke. Just in case it helps you at all.

I hope the dietitian is able to help.


@chelsea05 welcome to the forum. Sorry you’ve had cause to join us.

Folowing my stroke i found food tasted vile & things i’d previously loved I could no longer eat. Along with this I had a reduced appetite & never felt hungry. I also had a heightened sense of smell.

I am now 16 months post stroke & have lost 4 stone in weight…i look a bit like a skeleton now :confused:

I still get times when things taste yuck but it’s less frequent now. My taste has changed though & there are some things I used to eat that I no longer do & some things I was never keen on that I now eat.

My appetite has not returned and I still never feel hungry.

I am currently being monitored by my GP. She put me on a high calorie diet plan which included drinking fortified milk (i can’t drink milk so didn’t manage that), adding things like butter, cheese & milk to mashed potato, having 2 smoothies every day & 3 snacks (100 + calaries each) on top of my normal food intake. I did the smoothies & the snacks & added calories into foods but i still lost weight. I am now on supplement drinks. Week 1 I gained 0.5 lbs in weight (yay) then week 2 i lost 0.75 lbs so now weigh a little less than when I started taking the drinks :frowning::frowning: i am seeing dr again in 2 weeks.

As you’re diabetic it is more important for you to maintain your diet. I hope things settle for you soon xx

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Hi there I’m 19 month post stroke and lost 3 stone ! My taste is still affected but it is getting better . I find eating an effort and exhausting … my mouth doesn’t feel right either my teeth feel numb :flushed: I eat coz I know I have too.but don’t enjoy it like I used to :disappointed:keep battling smaller portions might help ….all the best


Thank you so much for your reply
I never feel hungry or thirsty now
Also feel so cold all the time, as opposed to being hot all the time
It has certainly changed me I am very cautious walking left hand side much weaker
But glad to be here I now have a stent in my neck x

Thank you so much for your reply I was feeling so down when Dr said probably not stroke related and I was so shocked
I can’t really eat anything everything tastes vile even my favourite foods
We don’t socialise as that includes eating and drinking
Alcohol tastes vile too (sadly) hoping for an improvement soon
Thank you again

Thank you so much for your reply

@chelsea05 i have seen my dr a number of times re weight loss & she thinks it is stroke related. Stroke consultant didn’t say anything. I have had lots of tests to check nothing else causing it & they have been ok. Might it be worth you getting checked too?

I force myself to eat. Little and often helps but I don’t ever want it.

Hope you get your taste back soon x

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Hi @chelsea05, and welcome to the forum.
My stroke is over 2yrs now and I too am type 2 diabetic. As the all the others have said, taste and smell are affected after strokes and we all lost weight, hopefully these will settle down in time. I went off all sorts of foods I normally ate and feared I would run out of foods I stomach. But I could always manage things like toast and porridge, plain nuts and fairly bland foods such as chicken breast, steams veg, a couple new potatoes. I still enjoyed my hubby’s spaghetti bolognas but without the spaghetti :laughing:

But, what also encouraged me to eat was the very fact I’m type 2. I’d just had a TIA, I didn’t want another one, or far worse, I just had to overcome this aversion to foods or I’d starve. So, unenjoyable/unpleasant as they were, I just knuckled down and ate, even if I had to hold my nose to do it. And eat regularly, 3 small meals a day whether I wanted it or not. And it was a battle of wills at times…with myself…I’ve got a stubborn streak in me :laughing:.

It’s not about choice it’s about necessity and it does wear off over time as you are retraining your brain to eat all sorts, all over again, same as you did as a baby. Give in to it and you’ll starve yourself. I lost over 2 stone as it was that first year due to the muscle atrophy, I was starting to look anorexic and that is not look!

Are you on Metformin, if you are you already know that it suppresses the appetite, takes the pleasure out of eating too somewhat :roll_eyes:

I recon it’ll start settling over next few months. Can’t say how long it took me but I know I enjoyed Christmas pudding that year as I’d missed out the previous year because I had my stroke before we got that far on Christmas day :confounded: :smile:

Many thanks for your kind reply
Having no experience of strokes etc I was alarmed when I went to see under study consultant and explained unable to eat etc for him to say he has never heard of this
I was very depressed re this and started Googling symptoms
I am on metformin and glycozide . Been told to stop glycozide atm

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That’s odd as that one apparently can make you hungrier according to the NHS website.
Common questions about gliclazide - NHS.

Until you get to see your dietician, maybe try Complan. It’s a nutritional shake my sister says they used in care homes for elderly recovering from ops or have no appetite. They seemed to love it when they wouldn’t take anything else, but once their appetites returned they didn’t care for it anymore…that was always a good sign apparently. Its full of the important nutrients your body needs and being low in some can affect your sense of taste. So you may just be lacking in nutrients due partially to your food aversion but also as a result of your stroke possibly, it can be a vicious cycle. You can get Complan in most chemists and supermarkets, worth giving it a try…just hold your nose if you feel you have to :wink: :laughing:

They said to stop n case I had a hypo - will give complain a go thank you for suggestion

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Ah yes, they swapped my glimepiride for similar reasons. Then I had my metformin reduced because I workout so much.

Have you been keeping a close eye on you BS, recovering from strokes can be draining on energy levels.

It also might be useful to do a search on here using key words which may offer you links to older posts from stroke survivors with similar experiences, if you haven’t already done it that is.