Everyone has their own little rituals that they like to do after a meal. However, it’s important not to forget that our stomach needs to digest everything we have just put into it… Therefore certain behaviours should be banned! Here are 5 things never to do after finishing a meal.
1) Eat raw fruit as a dessert
What mother has never tried to get her children to eat fruit for dessert! In the canteen or cafeteria, there are always bananas, apples or a few oranges on offer for dessert. However, even if fruit contains beneficial fibres, vitamins and minerals, they also have acidic molecules -especially citrus fruits. After a meal, eating fruit increases stomach acidity and could cause stomach aches. Eat fruit instead 1 to 2 hours before or after a meal.
2) Drink tea or coffee after your meal
Drinking tea or coffee after a meal reduces your body’s ability to assimilate the iron in the food you have just eaten. Tea and coffee contain polyphenols and/or tannins which block the absorption of iron by about 70%!
Even if you are not deficient in iron at the moment, you may quickly develop a deficiency if you always drink tea or coffee after your meals.
It is therefore recommended that you wait 1 or 2 hours after your meal before drinking tea or coffee.
3) Take a nap just after a meal
Even if it has been proven that a little nap in the early afternoon helps the body to heal better, don’t do so just after eating. In a lying down position, your food stagnates in the stomach and digestion takes longer.
It is recommended that you wait 2 or 3 hours after a meal before going to sleep, to allow your stomach the time to digest.
4) Sit down
The seated position compresses the stomach and hinders digestion. The best thing to do is to take a ten minute walk before going back to your desk. Don’t walk too much more than that because this can also disturb digestion and the absorption of the nutrients in your food.
5) Go swimming or exercise after eating
You are sure to have heard this a thousand times: never go swimming straight after a meal.
Firstly, because you run the risk of cold shock response. When we digest our food, our body temperature increases. Therefore, the difference between your body temperature and the water is greater and this increases the risk of cold shock response.
Furthermore, swimming or physical effort puts increased pressure on the body, which needs to focus on digestion, which increases the risk of feeling faint.
It is recommended that you wait 2 to 3 hours after a meal before going swimming or doing physical exercise.