3 Foods that Cause Heart Palpitations

By Stephen T. Sinatra, M.D., F.A.C.C., F.A.C.N., C.N.S., C.B.T.

Often when I write about the best and worst foods for the heart, I talk in the context of heart-healing foods that are good to eat, as well as foods that should be avoided because they fan the flames of inflammation. Those discussions focus on how the things we eat and drink every day affect heart health over the long haul.

Today, though, I want to shift gears and focus on foods (including beverages) that can have more immediate and noticeable impacts on the heart—starting with foods that can cause heart palpitations. In this article I’ll explore:

And be sure to check out:

Stop PVCs (Premature Ventricular Contractions) Naturally

Why Foods Cause Heart Palpitations

Feeling palpitations after eating is a relatively common experience, which tends to occur when a substance in your food or drink—or your body’s natural biochemical response to that substance—jolts the heart’s electrical system and causes fluttering sensations, skipped beats, or a feeling that your heart is beating too hard or too fast.

Coffee drinkers, think about the last time you drank one cup too many. You know what I mean!

If your heart is healthy and you have no history of arrhythmia or heart disease—and you’re not experiencing any other symptoms—there’s little need to worry about an occasional episode of these irregular beats. For people who do have arrhythmias or cardiac issues, however, it’s a different story. Palpitations caused by food can cause an existing disruption in your heart’s rhythm to escalate, and potentially lead to a major event.

Foods That Cause Heart Palpitations: An Unholy Trinity

If you’ve had a heart attack or other cardiac event, have abnormalities in the shape or function of your heart, or have been diagnosed with an arrhythmia of some kind, I recommend staying away from foods that cause heart palpitations—especially these three:

1. Caffeinated Foods / Beverages

The research around caffeine is a little less definitive since a study released at the start of 2016 found no relationship between caffeine consumption and palpitations. However, those results don’t change the fact that caffeine revs up your sympathetic nervous system and spikes your levels of stress hormones (namely, adrenaline and cortisol), raising your blood pressure and increasing your heart rate. Caffeine also acts as a diuretic, which can wash away your potassium and magnesium stores, creating an electrolyte imbalance that disrupts the heart rhythm.

In my experience, placing extra stress on the heart—as caffeine does—can aggravate existing arrhythmias or cause new ones. One of the reasons beta blockers are prescribed to heart attack patients is that they help control heart rate and prevent sudden changes in heart rate and rhythm by blunting the effect of the stress hormone adrenaline.

For those of you with healthy hearts, your daily dose of coffee, tea, or chocolate probably won’t cause any harm. Beware, though, of caffeine-containing energy drinks, which are particularly popular with young people. These drinks, which combine caffeine with large amounts of sugar, have been linked with heart palpitations, arrhythmia, heart attack, and sudden cardiac death in adolescents and young adults.

2. Sugar

In addition to creating inflammation in the body, sugar is a stimulant with the ability to cause heart palpitations. The most obvious example is when you eat too much of it at one time. Initially you feel a “sugar rush,” which can cause palpitations. Later, you may also feel them when your blood sugar comes crashing back down, often to a level lower than normal.

Eating smaller portions of sugar-filled foods each day can put you at risk for palpitations as well, because it causes fluctuations in blood sugar levels. Low blood sugar is a common cause of racing skipped heart beats. Lower your risk by minimizing sugar consumption.

3. Alcohol

The link between alcohol and heart palpitations and arrhythmia is well documented. In fact, occurrences with binge drinking are so common that there is even a name for it: Holiday Heart Syndrome. The term refers to otherwise healthy people who suffer atrial or ventricular arrhythmias (often ventricular tachycardia) when they overindulge.

Obviously, if alcohol can have such an effect on a healthy heart, anyone with compromised heart health should abstain—even if it’s just one glass of wine. The risk is just too high.

What to Do if Foods Cause You Heart Palpitations

First off, take note if you feel any additional symptoms, because those could signal that you’re experiencing more than simple palpitations. Seek emergency medical help if at any point you also have:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Profuse sweating
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Pain or discomfort in the upper back, arms, neck, or jaw
  • Feeling of impending doom

If it’s the first time you’ve ever noticed heart palpitations, make a follow-up appointment with your doctor. It’s likely nothing is wrong, but it’s always best to err on the side of caution and make sure that the food-related episode isn’t the first sign of a bigger issue.

Next, start a log and record times when the palpitations recur. Note what you ate or drank and what sort of emotional state you were in. If specific foods or beverages tend to cause recurrences, take that as a sign you should reduce or eliminate those foods from your diet. Your body and your heart couldn’t be telling you any more clearly that those substances are doing you harm.

When to Worry About Heart Palpitations

Opt for Healthy-Heart Foods Instead

Just as there are foods that cause heart palpitations, there are “healthy-heart” foods that may help prevent them. Here are four of my favorites:

Wild-Caught Salmon

I love wild-caught salmon—it’s one of my Sinatra Super Foods for its heart health benefits. Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have a calming, anti-inflammatory effect on the heart and vascular system. Omega-3s also have been shown in studies to protect against sudden cardiac death caused by arrhythmias.

Nuts and Seeds

Since one underlying cause of arrhythmia and palpitations is electrolyte imbalance, it’s a good idea to up your intake of magnesium-rich nuts and seeds. Magnesium is a key electrolyte needed for more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body.

Green Leafy Vegetables

Spinach, kale, chard, and other green leafy vegetables are also rich sources of magnesium and heart-healing foods.


Avocados bring you the best of two worlds. They are good sources of magnesium, as well as potassium—another key electrolyte. You probably know bananas and citrus fruits to be a top source of potassium, but I like avocados because they also supply the body with a lot of healthy fats. Though fruits are certainly part of any healthy diet, they’re much higher in sugar.


  • Anand RG. The role of fish oil in arrhythmia prevention. J Cardiopulm Rehabil Prev. 2008 Mar-Apr;28(2):92­–8.
  • Ettinger PO, et al. Arrhythmias and the “Holiday Heart”: alcohol-associated cardiac rhythm disorders. Am Heart J. 1978 May; 95(5):555–62.
  • Goldfarb M, et al. Review of published cases of adverse cardiovascular events after ingestion of energy drinks. Am J Cardiol. 2014. Jan 1;113(1):168–72.
  • Maier S. University of California–San Francisco. Regular caffeine use does not result in extra heartbeats, study shows. 26 Jan 2016. Accessed July 20, 2016.
  • Di Rocco JR, et al. Atrial fibrillation in healthy adolescents after highly caffeinated beverage consumption: two case reports. J Med Case Reports. 2011;5(1):18.
  • Scott MJ, et al. Myocardial infarction in a young adult following the consumption of a caffeinated energy drink. BMJ Case Rep. Jun 2011;2011.

© Stephen Sinatra, MD. All rights reserved.


Leave a Reply


  1. herta klima

    on August 18, 2016 at 1:28 pm

    I like that you came quickly to the point. Some of this information comments require hours of reading before they come to the point. Of course I give early in the story up.

  2. Bill Ogden

    on August 18, 2016 at 2:35 pm

    I love to learn and am most appreciative when a teacher knows what he/she wants to say and then does a check at the end to see if the objective has been achieved. at the end of each paragraph ask your self what did I want to teach and second did i teach it?

    the method I love and appreciate the most is to ask the question followed by the answer (this way we all know what we are talking about) and we know the question and the correct answer. the important part of teaching is the “WHY” Spend the lines of the paragraph telling WHY this is the correct answer.
    take the following as an example from your article; “Foods That Cause Heart Palpitations: An Unholy Trinity” what did you want to say ? what did you want me to learn from the correct answer?
    Your paragraph should have been all about why the answer you gave is correct.
    You will not have wasted my time and you will have communicated truth from your vast knowledge,
    try it you will love it.

  3. Bill Ogden

    on August 18, 2016 at 2:40 pm

    this is the kind of teaching that generates stimulating after class conversations with students that I remember for years after

  4. Paraic Seoighe

    on August 18, 2016 at 11:50 pm

    Dr. Sinatra,
    This is very informative and helpful.
    Thanks very much.


  5. Mary G.

    on September 1, 2016 at 3:25 pm

    I was diagnosed with A-fib (I think “persistent”)and had an ablation three weeks ago. What can I do to make the ablation hold? I am a 59 year old female. I have cut back on caffeine. I take 400 mg of magnesium glycinate and 250 mg of magnesium taurate daily.

  6. Victoria D.

    on September 21, 2016 at 12:19 pm

    I had palpitations when my hormones shifted during perimenopause, but found that a daily walk soon resolved that problem completely.

  7. Deanna

    on January 5, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    I have afib and get palpitations easily with almost all food and drink. How can I get off my Beta Blockers. I have to eat.

  8. Ingrid Newman

    on February 11, 2017 at 8:28 am

    I have noticed that every time I eat eggs I have heavy palpitations and feel sick . Can you please tell me if I have an allergy to egg ? Is this normal or not? I do like eggs, I have no rashes or any breathing problem. I eat cake that contains egg and no problem there whatsoever.

  9. Jennifer B.

    on February 26, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    Hi Ingrid,
    I have A Flutter and have had three episodes to date two of which required cardioversion. All three times I had eaten a meal containing eggs, a quiche on the first two occassions and an egg sandwich on the third. Now when I eat eggs especially on their own I notice I get palpitations and feel unwell. Hence I have decided it’s time to give up the eggs along with other potential triggers. Somehow the eggs just don’t seem to agree with me. Stress also seems to play a part in my episodes.

  10. Barbara

    on June 6, 2017 at 1:29 am

    I eat Apple and popcorn, popcorn is popped in olive oil and salted with pink salt…too many times this brings on palpitations. Any suggestions?

  11. Barbara

    on June 6, 2017 at 1:31 am

    Sorry…I meant to say too many times this brings on heart palpitations

  12. HeartMD Editor

    on June 22, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    Hi Barbara,

    This is unusual, however, corn is a top genetically modified crop. You may be having an unknown reaction to the GMO corn or to the pesticides used on this crop. Pesticides could also be the culprit with the apple, so be sure to get organic whenever possible. Additionally, make sure the amount of salt you use on the popcorn is very low and your portion size is small because an increase in blood sugar can bring on palpitations.

  13. Jack

    on June 29, 2017 at 1:53 am

    Can cucumbers also be a good thing to eat if I’m having heart palpitations


    on June 29, 2017 at 12:33 pm

    Of course. And in all due respect, for whatever reason, you do not recognize or talk about the damage that olive oil and all kinds of all oils – raw or cooked – do to our arteries…. how they inflame, aggravate, and irritate them, how they shred the endothelial cells, and how this triggers heart attacks and death. It also causes angina too. This bewilders me. Instead, you continue to say and promote that olive oil is good for the heart. I don’t get it. I emailed you several times regarding this to no avail.

  15. Delores Kuta

    on June 29, 2017 at 1:51 pm

    I take Motherwort when having a heart palpitation. It slows down the heart.

  16. HeartMD Editor

    on June 29, 2017 at 3:27 pm

    In response to JEFFREY R. STEIN’s comment above: With all due respect, Mr. Stein, Dr. Sinatra wholeheartedly DISAGREES with your position about olive oil, but believes that everyone has a right to state their opinion and encourages a forum of ideas here at HeartMD Institute. Do you have any scientifically credible evidence to back your position on olive oil? One of the reasons that Dr. Sinatra likes olive oil so much is that there have been so many studies, such as Predimed, demonstrating it’s health benefits – you can learn all about those health benefits and click on links to just some of those studies at https://heartmdinstitute.com/diet-nutrition/olive-oil-a-superfood-more-super-by-the-minute/ . Also, Mr. Stein, I also just checked our email database, and there is no record of the emails you claim to have sent- we have not received any emails from you. If you would like to email us, please send an email to [email protected]. Please know that due to the sheer volume of emails we receive daily, we cannot respond individually to each one. Best wishes.

  17. Shafiqkhan

    on July 1, 2017 at 2:13 pm

    Great information particularly for the heart patients thanks a lot God bless

  18. Daniel Engelkes

    on August 5, 2017 at 10:13 am

    To JEFFREY R STEIN, I personally agree with you that there are some oils that you should stay away from. Like for example corn and soybean oil due to gmo’s. But oils like raw organic cold pressed extra virgin unrefined olive oil and coconut oil is proven to have health benefits and so does flaxseed oil due to the omega 3 fatty acids.

  19. Hazel Osa

    on November 26, 2017 at 11:02 am

    Do you know of any studies that have been done to further look into foods that cause palpitations? Do you have an idea how soon after the palpitations can occur? Does the rapidity indicate if the pathogenesis of the reaction is a blood sugar rush/increase or a food allergy response?
    I am asking these questions because i am getting palpitations to ‘healthy foods’ such as small amounts of sunflower seeds, raisins, black eyed beans and i am trying to determine what the cause is as i am gradually discovering my food choices are becoming very restricted.

  20. paul

    on December 2, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    The problem with all these fora is that contributors just warble on in a self-interested way about things they think are true based on mumbo-jumbo without a shred of evidence. Good health, including that holy grail: a steady heart rhythm , is a state of organised biological chaos so who knows what makes a difference or helps a particular condition? Olive oil? Dont be ridiculous! All I look for are specific, supported diet experiences that another person may report. In as few words as possible. I have had three ablations and two thoracotomies over the last 20 years for, or associated with, AF and I still don’t really know what triggers each episode, which may last for days or weeks. I wondered if hot chillie peppers, which I am fond of, can be implicated but I dont find anyone else reporting this.

  21. Gina H.

    on January 14, 2018 at 9:26 am

    I had ablation about 17 years ago having suffered supratachycardia since I was little which finally resulted in arrythmia. I was thankfully off the drugs and symptom free until a few days ago when the fluttering pigeon in my chest returned. After an ecg comfirming extra beats, the doctor is referring me back to the cardiac specialist for advice but I do not want to go back to drugs. I had a bad day, then a day without symptoms and thought it had gone away. However, I had cheese on toast last night and a glass of red wine and the flutters are back. I am wondering now if it is either cheese or the red wine which has prompted the return of the ectopic beats. I have been having a glass of red wine for years with no affect but now concerned that maybe I will have to give that up or the cheese.

  22. Peg

    on January 20, 2018 at 1:16 pm

    Both cheese and red wine are off my diet, and have been for years because of histamines, which give me arrhythmias. Google histamines. It’s just a matter of keeping the amount in check, not to much histamine at a time.

  23. Nalanda

    on February 6, 2018 at 8:41 am

    A big Thank You to Dr. Sinatra and his team for your amazing work at giving us such valuable information which helps us take back responsibility of our own health.
    I have developed a mild and irregular arrhythmia (1/day or less irregular heartbeat that I can feel) after taking medication for Graves’ disease. Fortunately, thanks to a functional approach, I have been able to stop medication and reverse my thyroid condition but the arrhythmia still persists. I eat a healthy organic varied diet with no gluten or dairy, no caffeine or alcohol, and lately I have been thinking that maybe eggs and EMF are also a culprit, but I thought that maybe I was pushing it too far. I am happy to read that what I intuitively thought is actually a possibility!
    In my case, what I have noticed is that the reaction may take up to a day or slightly more after exposure (for the eggs).
    Is there any testing that would help other than an elimination diet which can be quite complicated when symptoms appear after 24h?
    Could the heart arrhythmia be a symptom of an allergic reaction?
    Again, many thanks!!!!

  24. Tracy K.

    on April 25, 2018 at 4:36 am

    I’m a 53 year old white English female in the 3rd year of being menopausal. I suffer with asthma, gastritis/acid reflux, IBS and anxiety. My maternal grandfather died from aortic aneurysm, my dad has mitral valve regurgitation and AF (being treated) and mum has a small plaque problem. Both have been on statins in the past. Following a very high cholesterol reading, my doc put me on statins and within 2 months, the levels had reduced into healthy range. He advised me to stay on them for 6 months. I have lost weight but my anxiety has been bad due to a number of factors. I’m suffering with racing heart at night particularly which wakes me – it feels very uncomfortable. I’m also getting discomfort into my neck and down the back of my left arm and round my back however I am large breasted. Should I seek further heart related investigations and are my parent’s heart problems hereditary? Many thanks for any advice.

  25. HeartMD Editor

    on April 27, 2018 at 10:45 am

    Hi Tracy,
    Considering your family history of heart events and current symptoms, it would probably be a good idea to make an appointment with a cardiologist to gather more information.

  26. Esther

    on May 13, 2018 at 7:15 am

    Hi Tracy,
    I also suffer from heart palpitations, my doctor told me to stay away from allergy medication . I take only fluticasone spray but that is not working. What medicine I can take for allergy that will not affect my heart palpitations?.

    Thank you

  27. Lorraine X.

    on July 4, 2018 at 10:23 pm

    Hi I’m a 21year old girl been having heart palpitations for a month now.they just come out of nowhere even if I don’t eat, i can’t move around now because my heart starts to beat fast when I do anything I feel like I’m losing breathe. I don’t know what to do anymore I have been seen by doctors but it like they are taking forever. .please help.

  28. JAMES G.

    on July 6, 2018 at 6:09 pm

    For approximately 4 years now I have experienced an irregular heart rate which has been diagnosed by a cardiologist as AFIB. My doctor has told me that my AFIB symptoms are not normal or A-typical because when they come on they would be very strong with a very fast heart rate and skipped beats but decreased over a period as long as a week. At which time all symptoms would end. Since first diagnosed I have been prescribed statins which has considerably lower the intensity and lengths of my AFIB events.

    For sometime now I have felt that my AFIB events were cause by something I have consumed. After monitoring everything I have consumed I believe I have a likely suspect that is triggering these events. I first indentify Italian salad dressing (vinegar & oil type) and some condiments (Mayo, mustard etc). I believe the one common ingredient in all these items is vinegar. The Italian dressing was the worst culprit because of the high content of vinegar and it always gave me the most severe case and longest lasting AFIB event.

    I’m a 68 year old male who is in reasonably good health. I would like to know if anyone else has ever experienced vinegar as an AFIB trigger or am I just going down the wrong path looking for answers.

  29. HeartMD Editor

    on July 11, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    Hi Lorraine,

    If you haven’t already had them, you should have an EKG and an echocardiogram. Heart palpitations can occur in healthy individuals. You may benefit from targeted nutrients such as omega 3s from fish or squid oil. Please see this article for more information – Types of Arrhythmias Before starting any supplements, please discuss them with your doctor.

  30. Marina V.

    on September 19, 2018 at 3:43 pm

    Hi, I am 68 years old fairly healthy white women, have AFIB for about 2 years (diagnosed). I lost consciousness and fell down in my work place. My coworkers took me to hospital…- it how it all started. But before it for at list 2-3 years when I had my physical, I complained about disiness that most time happened in the spring and autumn time when out there going lot of atmospheric changes. (I already excluded red wines. For now I take liberty to have 1 drink of wiskey/ bourbon a week) I told about that changing weather effect to all my doctors-phisicians, cardiologists-nobody said anything on that. Just 2 days ago I fainted again, I believe, due to harricane Florence… Does anybody have similar symptoms?

  31. Irving-King

    on October 5, 2018 at 7:43 pm

    I have two leaky heart valves and up until a month ago had little problems except shortness of breath. For the past month I have had
    very rapid heartbeats but after reading your information I think it most likely wheat I try to buy gluten free products and also
    lactose free items. I have the occasional small wine. Your information was most helpful Thankyou

  32. Michael R.

    on October 18, 2018 at 1:57 pm

    Hi, I am 39 years old and I have suffered from allergies from age 18 (seasonal) which I started using antihistamines how many and which ever I could cause the allergies are so bad.
    At age 34 I started to feel a pvc one beat in the middle of my treadmill workout and thought nothing of it.. at 37 years old I finally ask my pcp to check and see what was up… sure enough they found pvc’s were The culprit… shortly before in my wife’s native country her trusted pcp checked my blood pressure one day and said it was too high which it could have been for many reason, but anyway I started taking losartan hastily to lower it instead of changing my life style. Well few months later I ended up in the er because my single only durning workout that I knew of pvc’s went to a series of up to three in a row like my heart was doing jumping jacks… at anytime not just during exercise…
    my pcp agreeed that the blood pressure med weakened my heart.. at which point I changed my entire lifestyle from eating habits to temperament and everything…
    Also I stopped all medicine they recommended and my pvc’s have almost totally gone away as long as no caffeine alcohol or over eating to the point where you can’t move lol I’m Italian… at the time of diagnoses I was 220 pounds now I am 185 pounds and I workout three times a week and practice intermittent fasting…
    Pvc’s happen to me randomly now about two times a week sometimes less sometimes none in a month… depends now mostly on my adrenaline and anxiety.
    Also is I bend over too fast while working it can happen too… I hope and pray and work to no avail to a day where I am free of them!
    After reading these comments about antihistamine I now believe that 20 years of severe allergies causing me to take medication for them have cause my problem. I too can no longer take them and only use fluconase which does not work lol. I also take magnesium, turmeric, L-carnitine and d ribose to help ease the pvc’s any advice is greatly appreciated and god bless everyone with our issues and I hope we all get better!

  33. Chris H

    on November 1, 2018 at 9:32 am

    Not sure why you suggest wild caught salmon rather than farmed would be a better alternative. All the health benefits you lay out are the same for both sources.

    (And 99% of “wild caught” salmon started off life on a farm then were released anyway)

  34. HeartMD Editor

    on November 1, 2018 at 9:36 am

    Hi Chris, Farmed vs. wild-caught is a certainly a big debate – here’s why Dr. Sinatra prefers wild (from his blog at https://vervana.com/choose-cook-healthiest-fish/): “Farmed fish are often fed GMO corn or soy, which may be the reason they have less protein, less omega-3s and more omega-6 fatty acids than wild-caught fish. This means that they are more likely to cause inflammation, instead of decreasing it. Farmed fish are often given antibiotics to help them survive their crowded conditions, and “treated” with pesticides – not good things, to say the least. Much higher levels of other toxic chemicals (like flame retardants) have also been found in farm-raised seafood than in wild caught varieties, all which can also damage local ecosystems in addition to your body.”

  35. Abdul M.

    on November 2, 2018 at 7:41 pm

    I am diabetic patient. I had hypoglycemia three times before. When I first faced hypoglycemia I started palpitation. Now lastly for prostate infection I had to take Antibiotic(Cipro). But this antibiotic dropped sugar and made me hypoglycemic. I stopped that in 25th sept 2018, but I started shaking and having palpitation with lot of extra bits with variable heart rates from 35 to 65. Normally my heart rate is 65. Now I am continuously having this problem.
    Two years ago I had this problem, I ate swiss chard and Okra a lot, along with Indian vegetable snake gourd(chichinga). It helped, but sugar will have to be stable and normal. But this time, I have been suffering more than a month. It is not going. If I eat frozen sardines, shall I have Omega-3? In Chinese store, I can buy living trout fish, will it good for mega-3?

  36. HeartMD Editor

    on November 6, 2018 at 4:59 pm

    Hi Abdul,

    Fish, such as sardines and trout, will contain omega 3 fats. Here is an article that discusses protocols that can help to stabilize heart rhythm.

  37. Abdul M.

    on November 12, 2018 at 3:38 pm

    I am diabetic. While taking Ciprofloxacin in september I started having heavy shaking in my chest. I am little improved in my feeling. But still I feel it.
    Recently in blood test Ferritin level is 281 . Its upper limit is 275. In previous tests Tranferrin saturation % is some times little less . I have other problem, I feel little sore on the Tip of my tongue. Doctor gave me Triamcinolone USP 0.1%. But it did not improve that much. Do I have Iron Overload or Anemia ?
    I belive all are those for side effect of Ciprofloxacin. For Magnesium I am eating vegetables OKRA, Brown Basmati Rice Collard, Swiss cahard, Kale.
    I am eating Atlantic Mackerel, or Sardine, 75 gram each day. It is frozen and I buy it from No frills Toronto. It is supplied by North Atlantic fisheris limited, product of portugal. I can buy living trout fish. It is more than 45 days, I stopped Ciprofloxacin , But still the symptoms are not going away. Thanks!
    Should I go to heart specialist for stress test?

  38. Debi

    on November 25, 2018 at 10:33 pm

    I have had heart palpitations for years off and on. Initially beginning with per-menopause, somewhere around the age of 32, I was checked, and required to wear a heart monitor (nothing to speak of came out of it). Fast forwarding, I have had the same situation happened several times over the past 25 yrs, with similar testing to include echocardiogram, and stress test. I attempt to keep my coffee to a minimal amount, and stay away from cold/sinus meds due to high blood pressure. However, have drank a couple glasses of white wine several times a week for years without problems it seems. I have recently had a bout with many palpitations a day, follow by a milder day, or even days without any…I’ve experienced several bad days recently, I do have some current added stress, additionally noting the weather changes seem to increase the problem. Recently I read about sinus arrhythmia, as for the most part I become congested when my palpitations occur. My concern this time, they seem to be sticking around, I do have a slight heart murmur….and sadly not getting any younger (currently 58). I do sometimes feel as though they are food related, so I’ve taken note to many comments.
    Thank you,

  39. Abdul Matin

    on December 4, 2018 at 8:14 am

    Still I am having this problem continuously. In my case low sugar and quick changing sugar is the reason probably. I did the stress test. At first it shows lots of extra bits as the speed of trademill increases, it goes away. But running is not good for me. It induces reduction of sugar at night. I need to reduce Long Acting Insulin at night. I am feeling murmuring most of the time. Doctor says it is benign and did do any treatment. Anxiety may be one of the causes too. Can anybody help me please?

  40. rosanne

    on December 11, 2018 at 6:29 pm

    Hi I am a 65 yr old female who has had high blood pressure for over 20 yrs. and heart palps since 12 yrs of age. Lately blood pressure goes from 160 /93 or 180/105 with me being on metoprolol and diltiazem. and then all of a sudden 130/85 or 114/73 pulse some times 49 and some times 72. some times higher. Spare you the details but now, I forgot the name of the other bp med he wants to give with the other two with not even trying to figure out what is causing all of this. Palps seem to be food related and some times just out of no where and worse the last few months. I just want to cry of the kind of care I am getting for my conditions. Please where can I go toget help who really wants to help me with the cause. I have developed sleep disorder. Not sleep apnea, but others and I think my heart has something to do with it. Now sleep dr. Has prescribed me 4 different or more remedies which all have messed with my heart which I think. Just can’t figure it out. Melotonin? Seems to have made me heart race or was it just one of those evenings. Valerian root. I read not good for my condition. Lorazepam. did not like it. Now Ambien Have not tried it yet. on my own I am trying Natural raw honey and warm milk. Who know. I need a good dr. to help put all this together. Please help I want to enjoy my kids and grand kids and my zumba classes again. Ugh. I just had a cup of camomile tea with honey palps are better. Just call me confused.

  41. Samantha

    on December 17, 2018 at 4:50 pm

    Hi my name is Samantha I’m 22years old and I was diagnosed with sinus tachycardia, been with it since 2013 till date, been having fast heart beat, pains and tightness on my chest please what should I do to know the underlying cause of it

  42. ChasUGC

    on January 8, 2019 at 6:11 pm

    When I was in college I abused caffeine and I had heart palpitations. I rushed to the college doctor. After that, I stopped abusing caffeine. Then, after college, I started drinking coffee at work and they started again. It scared me completely off caffeine. I haven’t had any caffeine beverages in 30 years and no heart palpitations. I drink no coffee, no coca-cola, no black tea, or anything with caffeine in it. So, this study is wrong. Cocaine will do the same thing too. Caffeine was a replacement for cocaine. These silly “caffeine beverage company” endorsed studies are ridiculous.

  43. Richard T

    on January 19, 2019 at 2:00 pm

    Sugar definitely gives me palpitations, I used to eat too much up to five years ago I didn’t know how bad it can be… I cut down a lot, now even if I eat just one little too much like a small piece of chocolate for example I get palpitations.
    I just can’t eat any refined sugar, fruit sugar is ok, sometimes cheese gives me palpitations, foods which are difficult to digest, also I think I should cut down on coffee I am having about four cups per day, I have hypertrophic cardiomyopathy inherited from my mother and have been on a low dose of 50 mg metoprolol beta-blockers for 14 years now and for life, all heart tests and scans I have been doing for 15 years now and ever year come back “normal” no worsening, everything stays the same.

    My mother is nuts, she can eat a box of chocolates followed by a packet of biscuits in one night, then goes to sleep and gets cramps in her legs because of sugar overdose, still she continues, she is not overweight at all, she is 77 years old now.

  44. dan

    on February 19, 2019 at 9:10 am

    “Feeling of impending doom”? What is that a symptom of?

  45. Kathleen Re

    on March 6, 2019 at 5:17 pm

    From the blood work at my husband’s last yearly physical, the doctor told him his cholesterol was getting too high. His HDL was 55.3 and his LDL was 166.9 and his total was 243. Since he was generally in good health and was not on any prescription drugs, he suggested he try to get it down with diet. The diet he recommended told him to avoid avocados, but yet you say that avocados are good for you. I am confused. The diet also told him to eat no more than 3 egg yolks a week, and avoid butter, coconut oil and palm kernel oils. Are these good guidelines for him to follow?

  46. Delores K

    on March 7, 2019 at 1:04 pm

    The problem with olive oil is that many brands are mixed with other ” cheap oils” which you do not want in your diet. True olive oil is expensive. I have found only about four different brands that are pure olive oil.

  47. HMDI Editor

    on March 8, 2019 at 12:12 pm

    Hi Delores,
    You are correct! Dr. Sinatra wrote about this very issue you mention in this article here: https://vervana.com/is-your-olive-oil-real-or-fake/. As discussed in the article, keep an eye out for certification, like that provided by the California Olive Oil Council.

  48. Eniola

    on April 10, 2019 at 7:46 am

    Thank you very much. Do noodles cause heart palpitation?

  49. Rob

    on June 6, 2019 at 11:48 pm

    Most of these comments say their heart beats rapidly when pvc’s occur. Mine seems to act up when I’m resting. My heart rate has always been slow 50 to 60s. Years it’s been that way. Anyway, they do unnerve me when they happen. Had them now over 24 years. All the routine tests have been done. Just wish they would go away. Praying seems to help. Thanks for listening

  50. Jack D

    on July 12, 2019 at 1:40 pm

    I was diagnosed years ago with orthostatic hypotension by a cardiologist who recommended I sit back down after near fade outs when standing. Also have anemia and anorexia (BMI under 18) from unknown causes, age 77, otherwise good health. I have a regular exercise program and take Q10 +. Any suggestions

  51. Iris

    on July 22, 2019 at 8:38 pm

    Hello there,
    My husband is been having heart palpitation for about a year, every time he eats or drinks even water the palpitations will start.
    His doctor has run tests and they can’t find anything. The thing is that it goes away on it’s own and all of a sudden it starts.
    He has stop carbs intake, stops all the vitamins he takes and nothing seems to do the trick.
    We have not been able to find what’s causing it.
    What do you think this could be?
    I will appreciate if you could help us out.

  52. George E

    on September 15, 2019 at 10:34 am

    I’m a 60 year old man and have been diagnosed with AFIB three years ago. My irregular heart beat is very pronounced at night which interferes with my sleep. I have been put on Calcium Channel blockers and Beta blockers but I don’t respond well to these treatments. The Beta blockers are more effective but have more side effects. The Calcium Channel blockers are not very effective and they have less side effects. Recently my Cardiologist talked about oblation. Has anyone had this procedure before? What should I expect?

  53. Ben

    on November 19, 2019 at 1:37 pm

    What a well, thought-out article. I found it very informative! I do have a question though. Can poor posture when sitting for an extended amount of time on a daily basis put pressure on the vagus nerve, which in turn could theoretically cause palpitations? Thank you in advance for your reply.

  54. Ana L

    on December 2, 2019 at 3:38 pm

    I am 69 yo woman and have been diagnosed few yrs back with PVC’s. Also High BP and pulse dipping at times below 40.
    My cholesterol is around 200.
    Had all the tests and though there is lots of heart disease in the family on both sides, nothing significant was found in my case.
    My diet was never really bad, i eat organic mostly and have reduced “Unholly Trinity” foods. I am mostly on pescatarian diet, wild salmon and veggies being my favorite. I am allergic to dairy, do not do well with grains and legumes, and beans are also not agreeing with me, hence i eliminated those foods.
    I have approached PVC’s from the angle of anxiety. I am quiet and tend to keep things in and have always had anxiety issues.
    My pcp encouraged me to try yoga, meditation and i also went back to playing with crystals. I was drawn to stones and crystals in the past and always found them to give me inner peace. Just playing with them, holding them, wearing pendants seems to calm me.
    My PCP’s went down by 50% last we checked, from 16 to 8%. Pulse seems to be staying higher, have not seen it hit lows in months. I feel more grounded and calmer. Have only been doing it for about a year so it will be interesting to see if it holds.
    Just a thought that there could be more to it than diet changes.

  55. Ana L

    on December 2, 2019 at 3:44 pm

    Meant my PVC’s went down by 50%. Sorry.

  56. Barbara

    on December 17, 2019 at 10:02 pm

    I had a blood test with my Naturopath which determined eggs, milk and gluten to be my chief allergens, Milk was the worst. Eliminating that seems to have greatly reduced my afib. Thanks for this article which is easy to understand, not in Doctor-speak 🙂

  57. Christian

    on March 2, 2020 at 11:45 am

    It was Mar. 27, 2018 . I had open heat surgery . Two bypass on the left vent. one on the right. I went to the Doctor about high pressure in July. The Doctor told me they don’t know what causes high blood pressure. He wanted me to take med for my high blood pressure. Its kind of strange to take something that the Doctor admits as to not knowing what causes high blood pressure. What about this med has on my body? Isn’t there a better way? Right now I wake up at night and my heart is going like a speeding car down the road. I find that putting my fingers on my left shoulder bone . I can quite the heart. I guess I drank too much coffee in my early years. I have started to take vitamins . I admit I feel better. I am 87 and will be 88 in July. I am still driving, playing golf.

  58. Harriet

    on April 13, 2020 at 12:58 pm

    Am 40 yrs old had palpitations in 2016 and had a heart monitor for 4 weeks cardiologist found nothing until palpitations went a way now about 3 weeks ago I got chest pains and palpitations but I was taking lots of ginger and lemon and vinegar plus stressed about Covid that my palpitations are back was also bleeding alot due to birth control pill what can help am Harriet

  59. Sandi bergeron

    on April 20, 2020 at 1:56 pm

    Hi Harriet,
    This is what Dr. Sinatra had to say.
    Stress can certainly cause the symptoms you are reporting. Even though you checked out fine in 2016, I would advise checking back in with your cardiologist again, especially because you are now additionally experiencing chest discomfort.

  60. Steve Doole

    on August 5, 2020 at 4:10 am

    Peanuts trigger palpitation for me, but not immediate so probably when another factor I have yet to identify is present.
    40 years ago was my first record.
    No heart doctors have asked me about diet.
    I am lean and generally healthy.

  61. Joan L.

    on September 27, 2020 at 3:02 am

    I recently wore a holter monitor for 5 days. During this time I was feeling almost nonstop palpitations and spasm/pulse feelings in middle abdomen above the waist, which seem to be connected to eating food of any kind. Afer 5 days I sent the monitor off to the company that reads it. My doctor said it picked up noting except a 4 second run in the middle of then night when I was sleeping as this was not recorded in the diary I kept with the monitor. I recorded every extra beat, bump whatever, that I felt for 5 days . . . pages of notes. The monitor showed none of them. How can t his be? They felt so strong. I know what I am feeling. I’m not making this up. I’m miserable. My cardiologist is perplexed too. Do you have any possible ideas? I sit a lot at my computer and when painting (I am an artist) and palpitations lessen when I am standing but I can’t do that all day. I am exhausted. I have had palpitations sinc eI was 22. I am 75 now. I had a successful mitral valve repair and Maze procedure 10 years ago. Seven years symptom free and then 3 years ago they returned a lot. Thank you.

  62. HeartMD Editor

    on October 8, 2020 at 7:54 am

    Hi Joan, Heart palpitations can be unsettling, and it must be frustrating not to know the cause. We’ve written about them in a few article, hopefully these two will be useful to you: https://heartmdinstitute.com/heart-health/when-to-worry-about-heart-palpitations/ and https://heartmdinstitute.com/heart-health/6-natural-ways-stop-pvcs-premature-ventricular-contractions/
    Electromagnetic stress is sometimes a hidden cause of palpitations – has your exposure to wireless radiation (wifi, cell tower, cell phones, smart meter, etc.) increased in the last few years?

  63. Judy

    on October 28, 2020 at 5:37 pm

    I was told I have AFIB in February 2020. I know the fact that COVID coming into society and my daughter being a nurse and working in
    covid unit gave me a great deal of extra anxiety. However I found that MSG was a real culprit. It appears in a lot of products but with many different names . Do a computer search on it and you can get a list of some of the names you need to be aware of. It is shocking sometime to see what it is in. Start reading your labels on foods.

  64. Lynell E.

    on April 18, 2021 at 4:53 pm

    I’m a 60 yr old white female 5’7″ 138lbs physically active.I eat mainly organic fruits and vegetables and grass fed proteins. I do have a sweet tooth.Heart palpitations started during my divorce 15 yrs ago. PCP put me on Effexor xr for about 6 mo. I was feeling better. No high BP. Occasionally have palpitations that would come and go. I have seemed to be more irritable since pandemic began and have had frequent headaches which is not normal for me . I assumed it was stress related? Recently I ate quiche and suddenly pain in my head and fast heart rate (145) went to ER. Finally ERD had to use adenosine to stop the rhythm I went home and was feeling good. PCP started me on metoprolol tar 12.5 2x day. About 6wks later I had another episode with heart rate 120 beats. Went back to ER. ERD tried lowering beat by IV metoprolol but it didn’t work. So was admitted to ICU (one nite)and given IV adenerone which returned normal rhythm. Cardiologist prescribed tablet adenerone before I went home and took 1 tablet before I left hospital. That started tremors and headache and HBP 190/80. Tremors continued along with vision and speach trouble, I did not take anymore of that medication. I am still on metoprolol I feel tired and minor chest pains. I feel something in my lungs when I breathe. I don’t like feeling like this. Help.

  65. Anne May

    on April 26, 2021 at 9:23 am

    I have recently been diagnosed with AFib and am still trying to adjust to the diet changes. I also haven’t found yet a real easy to read and understand non technical and student biased book on the subject or even better a AFib Cookbook to order.
    My triggers occur so quickly after ‘ the bad foods’ ( that I now know I have eaten for decades) and it amazes me HOW quickly they cause a bad reaction.
    However today I am trying to discover if cold water prawns are normally ok to eat with AFib and if there is a possibility I could conjour up a Prawn Cocktail sauce of some kind also.? Any fellow sufferers with eating tips would be appreciated. Anne May

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