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Myth or True: Is It Unhealthy to Drink While Eating?

Older people like to teach their grandchildren with the supposed wisdom that it is unhealthy to drink while eating. However, they are not correct. On the contrary, low-calorie drinks such as water or unsweetened teas can even aid digestion.

This is especially true for dietary fiber, which swells better due to the accompanying fluid intake and, as a result, can be digested better. In addition, many people tend to take in too little liquid, which is why they should not be without it when eating. Overall, you should drink at least one and a half liters of fluids throughout the day, preferably water and other low-calorie drinks.

Water is both a solvent and a transport medium for nutrients and helps the chyme slide better through the various parts of the digestive tract. In addition, water or another low-calorie drink can fill the stomach before or during a meal. You feel full more quickly, so water and unsweetened tea can help you lose weight.

The reason for the myth that drinking while eating is not healthy is the assumption that the additional fluids ingested dilute the stomach acid. The stomach acid breaks down the food and thus plays an important role in digestion. Anyone who thinks drinking while eating is unhealthy may fear that the diluted stomach acid can no longer break down food as well and digestion could therefore come to a standstill.

The fallacy already exists in the assumption that the ingested fluid leads to such a highly diluted stomach acid. Water and other drinks with a neutral pH value have only a negligible influence on the acid concentration in the stomach. Even when eating and drinking at the same time, this is high enough to break down the food pulp.

In addition, the stomach is able to control its acidity as needed. When the stomach expands, cells in the stomach wall supply hydrochloric acid. In addition, acid production is stimulated by chewing, smelling and seeing appetizing meals.

Very few people have the problem of not producing enough stomach acid. Many suffer from the opposite symptoms such as heartburn, which is usually exacerbated by alcohol, nicotine and stress. You can therefore drink drinks with every meal without a guilty conscience.