General Question

jabag11's avatar

Will eating too fast eventually become detrimental in any way?

Asked by jabag11 (676points) January 23rd, 2011

I know this sounds like a no brainer but I have been eating to fast for the past 6 months, just here and there, like 5–8 times a week I will eat my meals to fast to the point where my stomach kind of hurts afterwards. But I always feel better within 20 minutes.

And so I ask, can doing this cause any long term, and I guess short term problems with my body? and if so, what?

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12 Answers

CaptainHarley's avatar

You are far more likely to become overweight when you eat too fast for your brain to recognize when you are full. Slow down, you’ll live longer!

marinelife's avatar

When you eat too fast and do not chew your food sufficiently, your body does not develop the signal for satiety, and you are likely to eat more and become overweight.

john65pennington's avatar

To date, i do not have ulcers, but i should have. many. many times i have eaten a hamburger on a Code 3 call. i believe this situation effects different people in many ways.

gasman's avatar

There are at least 3 problems I can see if you scarf down & practically inhale your food (a la Harpo Marx).

1. It encourages overeating. You consume calories so quickly that you don’t feel full until the damage is already done. You could get fat.

2. You might get indigestion. Inadequate chewing causes bigger chunks for the stomach to deal with. Also a fuller stomach with copious acid and other digestive juices increases the likelihood of acid reflux / heartburn. You could get GERD, Barrett’s esophagus, and possibly esophageal cancer.

3. You tend to swallow more air when eating quickly. This will aggravate abdominal distension & make for more burping and flatus. You could have a harder time making friends.

That said, I’m a pretty fast eater myself—sometimes out of necessity on a job with no guaranteed breaks. I’ve never had serious problems with it. But do as I say, not as I do…

iamthemob's avatar

If you’re eating that fast…it’s more likely that (2) above is your biggest long-term concern. It sounds more like you’re eating on the go rather than sitting down for big meals you’re stuffing yourself on.

However, if that’s also the case…if you have to eat fast, try to eat only half of what you are served in any one sitting. Take the rest with you. A dinner portion at most restaurants is a portion for three in reality.

WasCy's avatar

Aside from some of the health aspects mentioned above, most of which seem pretty accurate and obvious except for the part about ulcers (gastric ulcers are primarily a bacterial problem caused by heliobacter pylori, or H. pylori for short).

But the problem of “eating too fast” seems to be symptomatic of something else to me. That is, that you’re doing “something else” too much to enjoy one of life’s greatest pleasures. It’s as if, for example, you don’t have enough time or energy for sex or enjoying the company of other people, or reading, or something else that you like to do. What’s the point of life, anyway?

I get to places in my life once in awhile, rarely, where I “don’t have time” for things that I enjoy, and that’s a signal to me that I’m working too hard (generally) or screwing something else up in my life. I would recommend making a conscious effort to eat more slowly and enjoy the food, and find a way to make time for that. Don’t let stress and a bad diet kill you early.

gondwanalon's avatar

Your stomach should ache after you eat. Maybe you are eating too much. Follow the Chinese saying: ā€œEat until you are eight-tenths full.ā€

I have to eat quickly at work when I’m alone and I’m not allowed a breaks. So I steal 5 or 10 minutes to wolf down 8/10 of a belly of food and get back to work. I hate it when my mouth is packed with food and the phone rings. HA!

Generally I think that people spend too much time eating their food. I just want to get it over with so I can move on and get back to doing whatever I’m up to.

Ron_C's avatar

I suspect that occasional fast meals don’t do much harm. However the fastest way to gain weight is to eat too fast. Additionally, digestion problems occur when food is not properly chewed. So if you eat fast and on a regular basis, your weight will go up and nutritional levels will go down. You are also likely to have intestinal problems because of the sudden rush of poorly chewed food.

Jeruba's avatar

@gondwanalon, did you mean “Your stomach should not ache after you eat.”?

gondwanalon's avatar

@Jeruba HA! Yes I meant to write what you wrote. That was very sloppy of me. I’ll try to do better in the future. Stomach pain is NOT a good thing, for sure!

jabag11's avatar

wow great answers!! thank you all

mattbrowne's avatar

Absolutely. You will eat more than your body needs.

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