Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

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Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby Herbsman » Tue Sep 21, 2010 4:48 pm

I wasn't brought up to drink with my food, so I rarely ever bothered until recently. Sometimes when I swallowed too much pasta, rice or bread too quickly it would get stuck halfway down, causing bare discomfort - sometimes I'd have to run to the bathroom and cough it up!

Sounds pretty stupid eh. Now that I've started making the effort to have water with a meal, and I find that it definitely helps the food go down easier, and afterwards it feels less like a brick in my stomach.

Of course it is easier to digest something if it's moist. Dry bread for example, would absorb a lot of gastric juice, so it's easy to imagine how eating a load of dry bread would cause slow digestion and even dehydration.

And of course it is best not to drink too much water with a meal, as that would dilute the gastric juices, and also take up valuable space that could be occupied by carbs and protein...

What are your drinking habits at mealtimes? Do you drink before, or during, or after, or all three? Do you know of any decent scientific studies on the matter?
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby FormicaLinoleum » Tue Sep 21, 2010 5:38 pm

I have to drink at least a little while eating or I have the same problem you describe--it feels like it sticks in my throat/chest. If I eat too quickly (and I have trouble eating slowly, I sometimes get hiccups if I don't have water on hand to wash it down.

So I drink a bit of water while eating--enough to avoid this discomfort--but not too much.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby Catt Queen » Tue Sep 21, 2010 7:34 pm

I drink a lot of water regardless of whether I'm eating or not, always got a pint glass of water within arm's reach.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby flatbushvegan » Wed Sep 22, 2010 1:28 am

I always drink water before, during, and after. :) I can't imagine doing otherwise, particularly if I'm eating anything slightly salty. It also helps to "cleanse the palate" between different things you're eating, in my opinion. Not drinking water reminds me of times I've had to ration water while backpacking in the desert--not pleasant.

The only science on the issue that I personally know comes from reading in Nancy Clark's sports nutrition for recreational athletes that it helps with digestion to drink water with a meal. But I don't don't know anything more than that--never really thought it could be a bad thing.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby -ash- » Wed Sep 22, 2010 2:40 am

I remember hearing a holistic healthy type person telling me I shouldn't drink water wihin half an hour after a meal. Something to do with digestion. But I've never heard anyone else express similar sentiment.

Personally, I drink water nearly constantly; pre-mea, post-meal and during meals.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby xrodolfox » Wed Sep 22, 2010 8:18 am

Yeah, the theory, I've heard, is that water dilutes body chemicals needed to digest food properly.

I think that's BS. I'm sure my body can *change* the amount of HCL acid produced in response to all sorts of factors, including fluid content of my meal.

I drink prodigious amounts of water when I eat. I feel best when i drink a lot, and badly if I don't drink anything.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby XkillerX » Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:52 am

Sorry to dilute the new age bullshit folks, but it works like a charm for me. And my sister. And she's been living with a messed up stomach all her life and says this has done more to help ease digestion than anything else beforehand.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby Herbsman » Wed Sep 22, 2010 12:14 pm

[quote="xrodolfox"]
I think that's BS. I'm sure my body can *change* the amount of HCL acid produced in response to all sorts of factors, including fluid content of my meal.
EXACTLY!!!

Thats what homeostasis is!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby Clem Snide » Wed Sep 22, 2010 12:38 pm

[quote="Herbsman"][quote="xrodolfox"]
I think that's BS. I'm sure my body can *change* the amount of HCL acid produced in response to all sorts of factors, including fluid content of my meal.
EXACTLY!!!

Thats what homeostasis is!!!!!!!!!!!!


The same process by which my brain lowers the volume when a holistic therapist starts speaking.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby Herbsman » Wed Sep 22, 2010 7:41 pm

[quote="Clem Snide"][quote="Herbsman"][quote="xrodolfox"]
I think that's BS. I'm sure my body can *change* the amount of HCL acid produced in response to all sorts of factors, including fluid content of my meal.
EXACTLY!!!

Thats what homeostasis is!!!!!!!!!!!!


The same process by which my brain lowers the volume when a holistic therapist starts speaking.

:lol:
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby XkillerX » Wed Sep 22, 2010 8:37 pm

Or, it might work for you. If you have digestion or eating problems, splitting your eating and drinking from each other might just work.

No bullshit, just works. 7 billion people, not all the same.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby xrodolfox » Wed Sep 22, 2010 10:00 pm

[quote="XkillerX"] 7 billion people, not all the same.


this can't be true.












ok. I was kiddin'. duh.
I think that if drinking liquids separately is better for an individual, then that's great. Same with gluten, or corn, or any other eating pattern.

I tried going gluten free for a month. It was horrid on my intestines. I have no idea why. Perhaps i ate too much corn. But it messed me up. My wife goes gluten free, and it's a like a miracle for her. All these previous problems that she had just gotten used to cleared up. It was amazing.

I tried separating water from my meals, and it was mostly annoying, and I got no benefits. Clearly it works for some.

Everyone is different.



Except me.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby luckyshot » Thu Sep 23, 2010 3:20 am

[quote="xrodolfox"]I feel best when i drink a lot, and badly if I don't drink anything.


Likewise. I drink water all day long and while I've always had a drink with every meal, I've never paid attention to how much I drink. I just drink when I'm thirsty and I usually finish off the glass of water when I'm finished my meal.

I know that feeling you're talking about though, like the food got stuck. It freaks me out! It only happens when I eat really fast.
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Re: Drinking water while eating food: what's the deal?

Postby powerlifer » Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:30 pm

The theory is that it lowers stomach acid which in turn makes digestion harder. Ive had lifelong digestion problems and found the half an hour rule to work.

Although nothing works as good as bitter herbs for digestive/gallbladder/liver problems. Maybe minus fermented foods to replace the good flora.
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