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Doctor insights on: How Long Does It Take For Food To Pass Through The Digestive System

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Dr. Eric Kaplan
Board Certified, Colon and Rectal Surgery
36 years in practice
8M people helped
1

1
How long does it take for food to pass through the digestive system?

How long does it take for food to pass through the digestive system?

In a normal person: without any prior surgeries or GI diseases, about 60 90 minutes from the mouth thru the small intestine to reach the colon and then another 24-36 hours thru the colon or large intestine to the anus. Of course food that cause diarrhea or constipation can change this in either direction ...Read more

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Dr. Arnon Rubin
Board Certified
18 years in practice
157K people helped
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Dr. Heidi Fowler
3,215 doctors shared insights

Nutrition (Definition)

Nutrition is the synergistic combination of nutrients found in food and water that allows the human body to perform all essential ...Read more


Dr. Pamela Pappas
Board Certified, Psychiatry
36 years in practice
135M people helped
2

2
How long does it take for food to go through the digestive system?

How long does it take for food to go through the digestive system?

Variable: Amount of time between eating food and processing entirely to defecation varies between people a lot. It takes 6-8 hours for food to through stomach and small intestine. From there it goes to large intestine for more digestion, absorption of water, and then elimination of waste. Studies have shown between 33 - 53 hours total. Kids might be faster than adults -- and medications can affect it too. ...Read more

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Dr. Arnon Rubin
Board Certified
18 years in practice
157K people helped
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Dr. James Ferguson
Board Certified, Pediatrics
40 years in practice
144M people helped
3

3
How long does it take for babies food to go through digestive system?

How long does it take for babies food to go through digestive system?

Varies: In a good state of health most babies will have a transit time from 3-5 days. If constipated, it can be longer, if diarrhea it could be less than an hour. ...Read more

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Dr. Charles Cattano
Board Certified, Gastroenterology
33 years in practice
40M people helped
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4
What could cause food to pass through the digestive system in 3-4hours usually with a greenish or yellow/orange color looking partly undigested?

What could cause food to pass through the digestive system in 3-4hours usually with a greenish or yellow/orange color looking partly undigested?

"Cure" for diarrhea: First define the problem (do you have soft or frequent stool?), circumstances under which diarrhea developed (malabsorption, pancreatic maldigestion, food intolerances, stressful times, exposure to ill individuals, food poisoning, ischemic gut, inflammatory colitis, etc.), severity (stool volume, dehydration, blood, night-time awakening, weight loss), ; duration. The "cure" depends on diagnosis. ...Read more

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Dr. Arnon Rubin
Board Certified
18 years in practice
157K people helped
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Dr. Eric Kaplan
Board Certified, Colon and Rectal Surgery
36 years in practice
8M people helped
5

5
Normally, how long would the digestive system take to empty the food in it {incl. Intestines}?

Normally, how long would the digestive system take to empty the food in it {incl. Intestines}?

Following a meal,: Transit time through the small intestine is anywhere from 45 minute to 90 minutes; then transit time through the colon normally is 24-36 hours. This will vary from patient to patient and relative to diet and other conditions such as prior abdominal surgery, fluid intake, stress, meds and hydration status. ...Read more

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Dr. Simon Rosenberg
Board Certified, Dentistry
40 years in practice
658K people helped
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6
What is the process of the digestive system and how long does it take?

What is the process of the digestive system and how long does it take?

About 24 Hours: Food is broken down by chewing & digestive enzymes in mouth & swallowed down esophagus to stomach where more enzymes & acid chemically break it down further. Passing into the 40 feet long small intestine where bile from the liver neutralizes acid & breaks up fats. Pancreatic enzymes break down starches. The remaining waste has water resorbed & is eliminated as stool. It takes about 24 hours. ...Read more

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Dr. Linda Callaghan
Board Certified, Addiction Medicine
47 years in practice
1M people helped
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7
How long does it take for benefiber to get your digestive system going?

How long does it take for benefiber to get your digestive system going?

It depends.: It may take a few days however, constipation can also be due to not eating enough roughage, not drinking or exercising enough. Xanax or other tranquilizers can further cause constipation. ...Read more

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Dr. Carlos Satulovsky
Board Certified, Psychiatry
22 years in practice
1M people helped
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8
What is the slow, wavelike contraction that moves food through the digestive system?

What is the slow, wavelike contraction that moves food through the digestive system?

peristalsis: Peristaltic movements move the food in process throughout intestine. They are a normal phenomenon with certain characteristics. ...Read more

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Dr. David Earle
Board Certified, General Surgery
25 years in practice
7M people helped
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9
How long does it take the digestive system to fully adjust after a cholecystectomy? Is it normal to have some gas and loose stools 6 weeks post op?

How long does it take the digestive system to fully adjust after a cholecystectomy?  Is it normal to have some gas and loose stools 6 weeks post op?

Yes : That wouldn't be uncommon, and different people have different adjustment times. It is also normal to occasionally have gas and occasional looses stools even of you haven't had an operation. If you're really worried something is wrong, check with your surgeon. ...Read more

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Dr. Steve Springer
Board Certified, Family Medicine
18 years in practice
487K people helped
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If you eat something, does the material have to pass through your digestive system before entering your bloodstream?

If you eat something, does the material have to pass through your digestive system before entering your bloodstream?

Short Yes: By definition, if you put it in your mouth, you just entered the digestive system. That's from mouth to tail. ...Read more

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Dr. Ali Yazdy
357 doctors shared insights

Digestive Health (Definition)

Digestive health refers to the proper functioning of the digestive tract, including the stomach, ...Read more


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Dr. Arnon Rubin
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