How long does it take to digest food?

How long does it take to digest food?

Finding information regarding the digestion time of all nutrients can be quite hard to do even if one reaches out for medical books. It depends on one's health state, plus the functionality of the organs to produce ferments, so it is somewhat an individual process; Even with that being said, one can still consider the time it all takes, more or less.

  • Fruits are the fastest to digest in the small intestines since they go directly through the stomach as it all takes about 2 hours;
  • Digesting vegetables takes about an hour except for cabbage, carrots, turnip, etc which are more hard to assimilate;
  • Bread (pasta) takes about 3 hours to digest;
  • The digestion of legumes (beans, corn, lentils, wheat, etc) takes about 3-4 hours. 
  • Fish (meat) takes about 5-6 hours to digest
  • Milk takes about 2 hours to digest, yogurt - 2-3 hours, white (or yellow) cheese  -  3-4 hours
  • Mixing foods slows down the digestion to a great extent, so it might take your body between 4-6 hours to address the issue;
  • Foods rich in fats are extremely hard to digest. Sometimes, it might even take about 8-10 hours, since such foods affect the activity of the stomach and the small intestines as well. Normally, it takes no longer than 5 hours.
  • Liquids are assimilated the moment they enter the stomach
  • The entire process of assimilation in the stomach takes about 1-8 hours.

The speed at which the food goes through the digestive tract is different. For instance, its transportation from the duodenum to the large intestines might take between 2-6 hours as the time it requires for the food to go through the large intestine is somewhere between 20-34 hours as the whole process takes between 24-48 hours.

Individual digestion time

Food digestion takes us a different amount of time, as it also relies on one's health state plus the time for assimilating various enzymes, breaking down the food. Each of us can define their digestion time quite easily - just write down how long it takes you before getting hungry again after a meal.

Real or fake hunger - notice the differences!

The "real hunger" hits you because you lack energy. As for that "fake feeling", you just feel like you need to take a bite of your favorite meals. Thus, when you are getting hungry, just drink down a glass of water and if you feel satiety, have another one until you get the real, genuine hunger! 


To conclude:

  • Separate nutrition speeds up the digestion
  • Normally, fruits along with liquids are quite fast to digest as they do not reside in the stomach but go directly through it. 
  • Having improper food combinations results in decaying, stomach gases, hard digestion as well as acids release. 


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Examples of proper and improper food combinations

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