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Drinking Liquids While Eating – Yay or Nay?

Posted Jul 25 2011 2:05pm

Good morning everyone and happy Monday!  I hope you all had a fabulous weekend, I know I sure did :)   It was a relaxing one with family, copious amounts of ice cream , and some leisurely time with my hubby.  A perfect weekend to start off the week on the right foot!

However before I get into my eats, let’s discuss digestion.  I know, weird topic to start off with, but yet an interesting one.  Yesterday afternoon while my hubby and I were sharing a Togo’s Santa Fe Chicken Spinach wrap…oh side note!  Let me first paint this hilarious conversation…

Hubby ordering our food: “We’ll get the Santa Fe Chicken Spinach Wrap”

Me: “Why are you getting spinach in the wrap when it comes with lettuce?!!”

Hubby: “No I’m getting the Spinach wrap”

Me: “Huh?  I thought you were getting the Santa Fe wrap?!”

Hubby: Looking at me like a crazy person…”A. Spinach. Wrap”

Me: : “Ooooooh, the wrap itself is spinach! Duh!”

And that right there was yet just one of my many Shayla-isms…sometimes I gotta few ditzy moments in me…I say it gives me character ;)

But I digress…so as we were sharing our wrap, I noticed that I was slurping down my soda while he hadn’t taken one sip of his water yet.  I thought to myself, isn’t he thirsty?  How is he not drinking anything?  In our 8 years of being together I’ve actually noticed this before but never really thought to ask…until that moment…”how come you never drink anything while eating?”  He looked at me matter-of-factly and replied “because it interferes with your digestion.”  Say what?!  Never in all my reading of health magazines and literature, had I ever heard this notion…at least I don’t think I have?!  So I took it to Dr. Google and low and behold I found an article on the infamous theory that drinking liquids while eating interferes with digestion: (source)

“It’s very common that people drink water between their meals but research has said that a small amount of liquid during meals should be okay but drinking a lot of water, juice, or soda can cause digestion problems. Drinking water and other fluids can cause dilution of stomach acids and digestive enzymes, making them less effective at breaking down food. Whenever possible, it is best to drink fluids before and two hours after meals as this helps uptake of nutrients and move bowels.

Effects of Drinking water during meal:

  • Liquids taken during meals can dilute digestive enzymes and stomach acids and these are essential to break down the food and absorb nutrients. As it’s harder to break down the food, the stomach may produce more acids, which could result in heartburn or acid reflux. This could possible put more pressure on the small intestines as well because the food is passed along from the stomach without being broken enough.
  • Drinking lots of water during meals can affect the insulin level in the blood. When people drink lots of water during meals, it’s believed that it increases the blood sugar faster – as if we eat high glycemic index food* – and it increases insulin secretory as well. The more insulin is released, the more fat it’s likely to store in the body. Because the reserve of the liver and the muscles are limited, the more fat is generated.
  • Constipation and Gas problem. (No wonder I have these issues after I eat!! Sorry a lil too TMI ;) )

And this is more interesting info for digestion: especially the chewing part!  I admit, I need to work on that, I’m a definite fast eater…I like my food too much :)

Correct method of eating for optimal health:

  • Chew your food properly until it gets liquid as tremendous burden is taken off of the stomach and intestines and also allows powerful digestive enzymes in saliva to thoroughly mix with food.
  • Minimize drinking water and other fluids while eating.
  • Avoid physical exertion following meals.

However I noticed on Dr. Google that some other articles do dispute that notion.  But I believe it wouldn’t hurt to try if you do suffer from digestion issues.  I especially want to try this since I notice funky digestion issues and I admit to the fact that I do drink a lot while eating and do not chew my food thoroughly.  I’ll let you all know how my experiment goes!

Ok, now onto the good stuff, food!  I didn’t snap any pics yesterday except for our spectacular breakfast from Starbucks…it’s a Sunday ritual for us to get treats from there :)

Reduced-Fat Egg, Cheese & Turkey Bacon Sandwich, Classic Coffee Cake, Apple Bran Muffin

We then went to the gym to get in a lil workout.  I did 30 minutes of incline walking (3.0 @ 15%) and 30 minutes of light ellipticalling.  Then it was off to run errands…Target and Safeway!

I’ve been using my phone because my camera wasn’t turning on with a charge so I thought I needed a new battery.  Got to Target, bought the new battery, tried turning on camera one last time with old battery still in it, it magically turned back on and it’s working again?!  Ugh…go to Customer Service to return said battery that I had for approximately 2 minutes.  Sweet!

After battery fiasco it was time for Safeway to stock up on groceries for the week – love having that errand done and a stock full fridge :)

Came home, had dinner (avocado turkey salad for me, fish for him) and then watched Due Date.  It was pretty good and Zach Galifianakis (funny guy from the Hangover) is hilarious in it!  Seriously love that guy, too funny.

Today is a rest day for me and I was able to convince the hubby to take the day off from exercising too so we got to sleep in for an extra couple blissful hours :)

I was feeling savory this morning so I went with a breakfast sandwich:

  • Thomas 100% Whole Wheat English Muffin
  • 1/2 large banana
  • 2 tbsp. PB2 Peanut Butter
  • 3 egg whites

It was delicious, a perfect balance of carbs, fat, and protein, and I tried not to drink anything while thoroughly chewing my food ;)

Fashion and Fitness pages updated!

Questions:  Have you ever heard those theories for digestion?  How do you like to spend your Sunday’s?

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