Effects of meal volume and composition on gastric myoelectrical activity

Daniela Levanon, Ming Zhang, William C. Orr, J. D.Z. Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

47 Scopus citations


The absence of a standard meal in electrogastrography may limit its clinical significance. Different meals may fail to produce the expected postprandial motility pattern. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of meal volume and composition on postprandial myoelectrical activity. Fourteen healthy subjects were given four meals that differed from a 'reference meal' in one single parameter (volume, calorie, or fiber content). Gastric myoelectrical activity was measured using surface electrogastrography. Spectral and statistical analyses were performed to investigate the effect of food properties on electrogastrogram (EGG) parameters. It was found that the reference meal produced a postprandial increase in the dominant frequency (P < 0.007), dominant power (P < 0.04), and percentage of normal 2-4 cycle/min gastric slow waves (P > 0.05). Similar changes were observed with the low-volume and high-fiber meals but not with the reduced-calorie meal. Fasting EGG parameters in all four sessions showed no significant difference. It was concluded that low-calorie meals do not result in expected postprandial physiological responses and thus are not appropriate for EGG tests. A volume reduction of down to one-half the volume of a regular meal does not affect postprandial changes of the EGG; thus a condensed test meal may be recommended for symptomatic patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)G430-G434
JournalAmerican Journal of Physiology - Gastrointestinal and Liver Physiology
Issue number2 37-2
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Electrogastrography
  • Gastric emptying
  • Gastrointestinal motility
  • Stomach

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Hepatology
  • Gastroenterology
  • Physiology (medical)


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