The Digestion Time of Various Foods


When eating remember that certain foods take longer to digest than others. Eat first those foods that digest faster to avoid setting up gas on the stomach. Remember the old rule to eat fruit separately? Our grandparents taught us not to mix fruits and vegetables. Today people commercialize on everything and do not care what people eat. 

The reason you do not eat fruit with vegetables or mix with other foods, is because fruit digest faster. If eaten AFTER or with other foods that take longer to digest, the fruit will spoil while waiting in the stomach for the other food to digest. This causes gas.  

It's common to see fruit salads with nuts and vegetables included. 

Always eat melons (especially water melon) before a meal and with nothing else. Do not mix them with other fruits as melons digest very fast. 


 (approx. time spent in stomach before emptying).



When the stomach is empty, leaves immediately and goes into intestines,


Fruits, vegetables, vegetable broth - 15 to 20 minutes.



(blended salad, vegetables or fruits) - 20 to 30 min. 



Watermelon - 20 minutes digestion time.

Other melons - Canteloupe, Cranshaw, Honeydew etc. - 30 minutes digestion.

Oranges, Grapefruit, Grapes - 30 min.

Apples, Pears, Peaches, Cherries etc. - digest in 40 minutes.



Raw tossed salad vegetables - Tomato, Lettuces, Cucumber, Celery, Red Pepper or Green Pepper, other succulent vegetables - 30 to 40 minutes digestion. 


Steamed or cooked vegetables

Leafy vegetables - Escarole, Spinach, Swiss Chard, etc. - 40 min. - Zucchini, Broccoli, Cauliflower, String Beans, Yellow Squash, Corn on the Cob - all 45 minutes digestion time

Root vegetables - Carrots, Beets, Parsnips, Turnips etc. - 50 minutes digestion.


Semi-Concentrated Carbohydrates - Starches

Jerusalem Artichokes & leafy vegetables, Acorn & Butternut Squashes, Corn, Potatoes, - all 60 minutes digestion. 


Concentrated Carbohydrates - Grains

Brown rice, Millet, Buckwheat, Cornmeal, Oats (first 3 vegetables best) - 90 min. 


Legumes & Beans - (Concentrated Carbohydrate & Protein)

Lentils, Peas, , etc. - 90 min. digestion time


Seeds & Nuts

Seeds - Sunflower, Pumpkin, Pepita, Sesame - Digestive time approx. 2 hours (120 minutes).



Skim milk, cottage or low fat pot cheese or ricotta - approx. 90 min. digestion time

Whole milk cottage cheese - 120 min. digestion time.

Whole milk hard cheese - 4 to 5 hours digestion tim.e


Animal proteins

Egg yolk - 30 min. digestion time

Whole egg - 45 min.

Fish - cod, scrod, flounder, sole seafood - 30 min. digestion time

Fish - salmon, salmon trout, herring, (more fatty fish) - 45 min. to 60 digestion time

Chicken - 1½ to 2 hours digestion time (without skin)

Turkey - 2 to 2 ¼ hours digestion time (without skin)

Beef, lamb - 3 to 4 hours digestion time