Can you eat salad with Gastroparesis?

In this brief guide, we will address the query “Can you eat salad with Gastroparesis?” Additionally, this guide will present relevant information about what types of vegetables you should avoid, as well as what toppings and dressings you can include in your salads.

Can you eat salad with Gastroparesis?

You can’t eat all types of salad if you have Gastroparesis. Raw salads are not recommended because they are high in fiber, and they are slow to digest (1). 

However, you can eat salads made with cooked and canned vegetables, those are more digestible due to the cooking process (1).

How does fiber affect Gastroparesis symptoms?

Fiber is a non-digestible nutrient found in vegetables, fruits, and whole-grains, this nutrient could slow the stomach emptying (2). 

The slow stomach emptying is the root of all Gastroparesis symptoms (abdominal pain and inflammation, nausea, vomiting). So eating food that makes the emptying slower is going to make everything worse (1).

Are there specific vegetables that are less tolerable for individuals with Gastroparesis?

Yes! There are some vegetables that are less tolerable because they can produce inflammation or flatulence. Here is a brief list with the vegetables you should avoid (even if they are cooked) in your diet (1,3):

  • Cabbage
  • Raw tomatoes
  • Lettuce
  • Broccoli 
  • Cauliflower
  • Cucumber 
  • Onion
  • Mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Beans, lentils, and peas (these are not vegetables, but are often used in salads)

You can find some recipes for roasted salads here. Keep in mind to skip all recipes with the vegetables presented in this section, or replace those ingredients with squash (this is the more tolerated vegetable).

Are there any potential benefits or drawbacks to eating salad with Gastroparesis?

Eating vegetables will give you health benefits. The antioxidants, vitamins (mainly vitamin C and B vitamins), and minerals like magnesium and selenium found in vegetables can boost your immune system and prevent cardiovascular diseases, obesity, and even cancer (4,5).

However, as mentioned at the beginning of this guide, vegetables contain enough fiber to exacerbate the Gastroparesis symptoms. 

Moreover, people with Gastroparesis tend to eat fewer foods than their requirements due to the discomfort after eating. Vegetables are low-calorie foods and have low protein concentration; so it could be a potential drawback because consuming very low energy or protein could lead to malnutrition and susceptibility to get ill (1,5).

The best option is to incorporate cooked vegetables combined with lean meats, boiled eggs, and low-fat cheeses to ensure a correct intake of proteins (1,5).

Can dressings or toppings be included in Gastroparesis-friendly salads, and if so, what are the considerations?

Salad dressings are not recommended for individuals with Gastroparesis. Most salad dressings are high-fat, they often contain a lot of condiments, and could be very irritating for your stomach (3).

Therefore, your best option is using extra virgin oil. In the correct amount, extra virgin oil will increase the flavor of your salad without exacerbating your symptoms. However, you should ask for advice from a nutrition specialist to adjust the quantity of olive oil in your salad (6).

In the case of toppings, you can use toast white bread, cooked pasta, white rice, and turkey breast (1,3).


In this brief guide, we addressed the query “Can you eat salad with Gastroparesis?” Additionally, this guide presented relevant information about what types of vegetables you should avoid, as well as what toppings and dressings you can include in your salads.


  1. Limketkai BN, LeBrett W, Lin L, Shah ND. Nutritional approaches for gastroparesis. Lancet Gastroenterol Hepatol, 2020;5(11):1017–26.
  1. Snauwaert E, Paglialonga F, Vande Walle J, Wan M, Desloovere A, Polderman N, et al. The benefits of dietary fiber: the gastrointestinal tract and beyond. Pediatr Nephrol, 2022.
  1. Wytiaz V, Homko C, Duffy F, Schey R, Parkman HP. Foods provoking and alleviating symptoms in gastroparesis: patient experiences. Dig Dis Sci, 2015;60(4):1052-1058
  1. Cömert ED, Mogol BA, Gökmen V. Relationship between color and antioxidant capacity of fruits and vegetables. Curr Res Food Sci, 2020;2:1–10.
  1. Cena H, Calder PC. Defining a healthy diet: Evidence for the role of contemporary dietary patterns in health and disease. Nutrients, 2020;12(2):334.
  1. Bridges M. Dietary therapy for gastroparesis. In: McCallum RW, Parkman HP, editors. Gastroparesis. San Diego, CA: Elsevier; 2021. p. 311–21.

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