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News Flash: Food Doesn't Rot in Your Stomach. Ever!

Nutriton Diva tackles yet another popular food myth. Do you know what happens to fruit once it's in your stomach?

By
Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS
1-minute read

"I heard that you should never eat fruit after a meal because it will rot in your stomach. Then again, the French always pull out the fruit and cheese plate after a meal. They seem to have a clue....but who should I believe?" 

Answer: I'm sorry to see this silly old notion about fruit rotting in your stomach being revived in the popular media.

Here's the scoop, once and for all:  Fresh fruit doesn't contain any protein or fat to speak of. It's mostly simple sugars.  When you eat simple sugars all by themselves on an empty stomach, they pass relatively quickly through the stomach and into the small intestine, where digestion continues.  

If you eat simple sugars with (or immediately after) other foods containing fats, protein, or complex carbohydrates (such as a crusty baguette and a lovely French cheese), the combination takes a little bit longer to leave the stomach. That's all.  No part of that meal rots or ferments in your stomach or anywhere else.  In fact, eating fruit with a bit of cheese is a good way to smooth out the rapid rise and fall in blood sugar that occurs when you eat fruit all by itself.  

Mon Dieu, I think those French are onto something!

See also: Food Combining Myths

Mastering the Art of French Eating 

Image courtesy of Shutterstock

About the Author

Monica Reinagel, MS, LD/N, CNS

Monica Reinagel is a board-certified licensed nutritionist, author, and the creator of one of iTunes' most highly ranked health and fitness podcasts. Her advice is regularly featured on the TODAY show, Dr. Oz, NPR, and in the nation's leading newspapers, magazines, and websites. Do you have a nutrition question? Call the Nutrition Diva listener line at 443-961-6206. Your question could be featured on the show.