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How Long Does It Take to Have an Empty Stomach?

Story at-a-glance -

  • A New York Times medical feature raises the question, “How do you know when your stomach is empty?” — an inquiry that extends beyond medication administration to a periodic state of well-being known to positively influence your health
  • Most experts suggest your stomach is empty two hours after a meal, but the truth is multiple factors come into play, such as the type of foods you eat, the medications you take and any medical conditions you may be managing
  • Emptying your stomach through intermittent fasting is a wonderful way to boost your metabolism, normalize your insulin and leptin levels, reduce food cravings and regenerate your cells, among other benefits
  • As you choose a style of eating and meal timing that works best for you, I highly recommend you eat your first meal of the day around lunchtime and stop eating at least three or more hours before bedtime

By Dr. Mercola

The question posed in the headline is a common one heard by doctors everywhere: "How long does it take to have an empty stomach?" It's an important question for anyone taking prescription drugs because what you eat and drink, as well as the timing of your meals, can affect the way certain medications work.


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