How Long Does It Take for Water to Digest? What Happens in Our Stomach?

Every living thing needs water to survive. Without water, our bodies will not be able to function correctly. The domestic use of water is said to be the most important of all water uses for most people.

Water is a tasteless, colorless liquid that makes up more than 60% of our body weight. But, how long does it take for water to digest in our body?

Unlike food, the most time a person can go without water seems to be very short, like one week or less.

The Water and Your Body

When we take in water, our body absorbs the amount it needs to function and rids itself of the rest. Then, the body distributes the water to the different organs of the body. So, our vital organs contain water in varying amounts. 

The Water And Your Body

Water plays important role in the body. It carries oxygen and nutrients to the cells, helps the body absorb nutrients from the food, and aids digestion. Water moistens oxygen, thereby making breathing and blood oxygen circulation easier. 

It helps regulate our body temperature. Because our body loses water when we sweat, staying hydrated helps regulate our body temperature. It also helps in converting food to energy by activating metabolism and is very important in brain function.

Dehydration, according to research, can negatively influence focus, alertness, and memory function. It can also result in fatigue and anxiety.

The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine stipulates that men and women should take 15.5 and 11.5 cups of water daily.

How Much Water is in the Human Body?

The average percentage of water in the human body varies by age, weight, and gender. Dr. Jeffery of Allegheny University recorded that babies have 78% water, which is the most seen in humans. However, this percentage changes as the baby ages. 

Usually, women have a lesser percentage of water in their bodies than men, and lean tissues contain more water than fatty tissues. That is to say that your weight determines the percentage of water in your body.

How Much Water Is In The Human Body

An average body of a fully developed human being contains over 60% water. However, this can vary from about 45% to 75%.

According to H.H Mitchell, “the brain and the heart contains 73% water, and the lungs are about 83% water. The skin is about 64% water, muscles and kidneys are 79% water, and the bones are 31% water”. 

Besides, the blood, which is where most water is contained in the human body, contains 92% water. That means that our organs contain water in different amounts.

To maintain a balance in the percentage of water in your body, drink more water daily, especially after working out.

Water's Journey Through Your Body

Water's journey in the body begins in the mouth, and it takes a while for the water we drink to get to other parts of the body. If this process is shortened, the thirst for water becomes heightened.

Water's Journey Through Your Body

From the mouth, water travels through the esophagus, an 8-inches long tube that connects the throat with the stomach. Once the water goes through this pipe, the process of water absorption to the bloodstream then begins. 

Water then gets to the small intestine, which is where 90% of water absorption occurs.

From the small intestine, water moves down to the large intestine, where the remaining 10% of the job is done. It is responsible for squeezing out the remaining water in ingested food. 

Finally, water gets to the kidney, the organ that filters toxins. It needs a lot of water to do its job efficiently. Most kidney-related diseases occur when the kidney does not receive enough water to help it work better.

Often, the kidney reports dehydration by changing the color of urine from white to bright yellow.

How Long Does It Take For Water to Digest?

The answer to this question depends on a few conditions. Water does not go straight to the bladder after it’s taken. It performs some functions in the body.

Generally, water digests faster than solids because it is light-weighted. But, this is dependent on what is already in the stomach before and the body’s condition.

How Long Does It Take For Water To Digest

If water is taken on an empty stomach, it can pass through the stomach and small and large intestines in 5 minutes. However, if you drink water right after or while eating, it could take 45 minutes. That is because the stomach must work on the food first, before the water. The quantity of food consumed will unavoidably affect how long it will take the water to digest.

Ultimately, from the time water is taken, it takes between 5 to 120 minutes to be fully absorbed into the bloodstream.

So, if you want the water to digest faster, take it on an empty stomach when you are thirsty, and before you eat.

How Long Does Water Stay In The Stomach?

Just a little amount of the water consumed by a human gets to the bladder. 

Water does not just go straight down to the bladder as soon as it gets to the body. It has to perform some other activities. This is why it is essential to drink clean, healthy water that is void of dangerous substances. 

how long does water stay in the stomach

Water is quite different from food. In that, it is absorbed into the human body. As soon as the water is taken into the mouth and swallowed, it's duty commences. The first job is the activity that takes place between the brain and the mouth. The brain gives the mouth a signal that the body has had enough water. Water taken into the body is used for hydration of all the cells in the body, so it is the brain that gives the mouth signal that the cells have been fully hydrated.

Then the water goes down through the esophagus to the stomach. This is where the bloodstream absorbs water. The amount of water drank determines mainly how rapidly water is engulfed and how much water gets to the stomach. Drinking water on an empty stomach takes a short while to be absorbed than when food has been consumed first.

How Long Does It Take The Stomach to Empty?

In the 1940s, doctors began a study on gastric emptying times. Gastric emptying time is a test that measures how long it takes for the stomach to empty. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines an empty stomach as "one hour before eating, or two hours after eating."

How Long Does It Take The Stomach To Empty

Water totally emptying from the stomach varies from 5 to 30 minutes, if taken on an empty stomach. However, it will take longer to leave the stomach if food substances are present.

The sooner water empties from the stomach, the faster it is absorbed. Hence, the quicker hydration will occur 

Faster Ways to Empty the Stomach

There are a few ideas you can try at home if you want to empty the stomach faster than usual. They are:

Water flush

Water flush

Drink at least 6 to 8 glasses of water daily to help refresh your system and aid digestion. Taking a mug of hot water is also a good option.



This is done by drinking lukewarm water mixed with two teaspoons of salt in an empty stomach. After doing this, you will feel the need to visit your bathroom in just a few minutes.

Lemon juice 

Lemon juice

Mix a glass of water with half of the lemon juice and drink before bedtime and after waking up. In case it gives your teeth a sensitive feel, try taking it with a straw.

Olive oil

Olive oil

To encourage bowel movement, take a spoonful of olive oil in the morning on an empty stomach.

Can We Absorb Water In Ways Other Than Drinking?

YES! If drinking water is not your thing, here are other ways you can stay hydrated without drinking water:

Oatmeal water

Oats are one of the healthiest grains. Oatmeal expands and absorbs water when it is cooked. You can replace your breakfast with oatmeal; they are filling.

Oatmeal water

To make oatmeal water:

  • Soak the oats in water for 20 to 25 minutes
  • Pour into a blender
  • Add milk, vanilla extract, and water to the oat and blend.
  • Filter the mixture
  • Add sugar
  • Drink.


Milk is better and more hydrating than water and other sports drinks because they stay in the body much longer than water. They contain protein, carbohydrates, calcium, and electrolytes.

Fruits and Vegetable Smoothies

They are a great and tasty way to stay hydrated. Try blending strawberries, peaches, spinach, cucumbers, zucchinis, cauliflower, carrot, and other veggies. Most vegetables contain 94% water. The beautiful thing is that you can choose what fruit and vegetables to add.

Fruit ice

Fruit ice

As an alternative for water, fruit ice contains not just fruits but also a reasonable amount of cold water that can keep you hydrated. They look like ice-creams. To make fruit ice,

  • Neatly wash the fruits
  • Slice them into smaller piece
  • Put them into ice cube trays
  • Push in a popsicle stick into each of the ice cubes
  • Add your water
  • Freeze 



Drinking four to six mugs a day can keep you as hydrated as a liter of water would. Research proves that tea helps prevent heart diseases. Also, teas are healthier replacements for water than soda, caffeinated drinks, and other carbonated drinks.

So, What Are the Best Ways to Drink Water for Healthy Bodies?

So, What Are The Best Ways To Drink Water For Healthy Bodies

For the body to function effectively, we need to consume at least eight glasses of water daily. So, to keep your body hydrated and healthy, follow these leads:

  • Drink at least a glass of water after waking up. This will help activate your organs and remove toxins from your body.
  • Drink a glass of water 30 minutes before every meal, to aid digestion, and make you feel less hungry. Also, remember to drink another glass of water 1 hour after eating. This will help your body absorb more nutrients from the food.
  • Having a glass of water right before taking a bath will help lower your blood pressure and body temperature.
  • Before going to bed, drink another glass of water to refill fluids that might be lost at night and to aid the cell renewal process.
  • Ensure to drink a glass of water every 2 hours within the day. You can set your timer to serve as a reminder. 
  • Sometimes, people interpret thirst as hunger. Drink water when you are hungry. This is good for those seeking to lose some weight. 
  • Also, drink water before and after a work-out session. The amount of water you will need to drink depends on your weight, health, and weather. 

How Can Excess Water Be Removed From The Body?

Edema, also known as excessive water retention, is a symptom of feeling bloated or weightier due to excess fluids. It is a malfunction of the body's mechanism for maintaining fluid levels in the body. It can cause bloating, swelling, stiff joints, increase in weight, and puffiness.

How Can Excess Water Be Removed From The Body

To reduce the amount of water in the body:

  • Reduce the intake of salt. It contains sodium and chloride and can tie water to the body.
  • Take more of magnesium-rich foods like almonds, cashews, tofu, soy nuts, black-eyed beans, spinach, okra, and whole-grain products.
  • Increase the intake of Vitamin B6. Eat foods like eggs, pork, fish, bread, vegetables, peanuts, soya beans, mils, potatoes, etc.
  • Eat potassium-rich diets like avocadoes, bananas, tomatoes, mushrooms, sweet potatoes, peas, and cucumbers.
  • Exercise on a more regular basis to balance body fluids and rid excess fluids through sweats.
  • Stress less and sleep more.

How Long Does It Take For Solid To Digest?

Generally, it takes about a day to three days for food to be digested. The actual time, however, relies on the proportion of food and the kind of food taken. 

How Long Does It Take For Solid To Digest?

When food is taken through the mouth, it goes straight to through the digestive tract. And within 6-8 hours, it has moved through the stomach, small and large intestine. The ones passed to the large intestine are partly digested food that can take up to a day or more to completely break down the food. 

Proteins and fats take a longer time to digest because they comprise complex molecules that take longer for the body to process. But, vegetables and fruits digest quickly. You would have noticed that you feel hunger almost immediately after a fruit, this is because the body processes them quickly, leaving you hungry in no time.

After the body has digested the food and absorbed the necessary nutrients needed, whatever is left is regarded as a waste product, and this is what comes out of the body as feces. 

How Long Does It Take To Digest Liquid

As you consume water in the empty stomach, it may go to the stomach to the bulky intestine and plunge into your bloodstream within five minutes. If you drink water at the time of eating, you need to wait for up to 45 minutes prior water goes through the intestines.

How Long Does It Take To Digest Liquid

The reason is that the stomach needs to digest food first. Overall it will take 5 minutes to 120 minutes to fully absorb into the bloodstream from the time of consuming.

The University of Montreal had done a study poetically named “Pharmacokinetic analysis’’ of absorption, distribution, and disappearance of ingested water labeled with D₂O in humans’’ that has timelines and graphs analyzing the study since you prefer this type of stuff.

How Long Is Food In The Stomach?

The time it takes to digest food in the body varies for people and among males and females. 

Once food enters through the mouth, it needs about 6-8 hours to pass through to the intestine. The body digests different nutrients at varied rates, the combination of all the nutrients at once affects how fast it will move through the digestive system. 

How Long Is Food In The Stomach

Meals with high moisture quantity will be digested faster than high nutrient meals. A mixture of all nutrients slows down the digestive system since they'll need more enzymes to crush them down. Many people think eating fruits alone is a healthy meal, yes, it is, but when it is a combination of different fruits, like fruit salad, then it is not considered a healthy meal. It will even take a longer time to be broken down in the body. 

When you eat, and you don't allow it to digest before taking another food, the food will remain in the stomach. In some cases, this undigested food can stay in the stomach for more than half a day, and when the stomach can no longer take it, the food will be hurled into the intestines.

Ever wondered why some people have a big stomach? Most of them are walking about with a large chunk of undigested food. 

Additional Functions Of Water

All water does not come from drinking or foods. Much amount of digestive juices secreted by the body’s glands is the view of the National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse.

Water has a great role for the digestive system of your body like nourishing your cells, altering toxins from the organs and keeping your ears nose and eyes moist. Use a water purifier to get the safe water for us.

How Long Does It Take For Water To Digest FAQs

Can I drink water on an empty stomach? 

Drinking water on an empty stomach helps to get rid of waste in the large intestines. However, drinking too much water on an empty stomach increases cellular liquid, causing a reduction in mineral concentration in compartments. This can lead to a low metabolic proportion, which caused aging diabetes, high BP, heart diseases, and cancer. 

Water on an empty stomach can also help to ease back pain and weight loss. Also, drinking water on an empty stomach increases the level of thirst the more. 

How much water do I need to take to have a full bladder?

The bladder is where urine is stored, and to have a full one requires that you consume a lot of water. Study shows that an average human being can hold about 400-600 ml of urine per time. To have a full bladder, you can take about 32 ounces of water and wait for about 10 hours before emptying them.

How Long Does It Take For Water to Digest When Dehydrated

They got that the water began showing up inside the bloodstream up to 5 minutes; half amount of water is consumed in 11 to 13 minutes, and it is completely absorbed in 75 to 120 minutes.

Therefore what is the data look like: on the other hand, it shows very rapidly the water is absorbed for the first hour, deliberate in the blood?

How fast can food digest in the body? 

On average, it takes about 24-72 hours for food to move through the digestive systems. However, the time it takes is dependent on certain factors, like age, gender, and metabolism. It also depends on the type of food taken. 

How long does it take for water to reach the bladder? 

For normal circumstances, it takes about three hours to process through a liter of water. But generally, the actual time it takes is dependent on the rate of absorption through the cells in the body. Water has to go through the stomach, kidney, small and large intestines before the remnant is now passed to the bladder to be passed out as urine. Thus, the rate at which this happens depends on what the water meets in the stomach and other compartments. 

Does water help digestion? 

Water helps to dilute the digestive fluids in the body. It improves digestion, in that it helps to break down food for the body to immerse the nutrients. Water also helps to prevent constipation. Many people have the belief that taking water before a meal is healthier than after, but the truth is, water helps in digestion, and that should be after a meal. 

How long does it take to absorb water


Water is essential for the survival of all living things. Apart from the health benefits it provides, it is also vital for proper digestion.

It plays lots of roles in the body and keeps the organs hydrated to function effectively. Every time we drink water on an empty stomach, it gets digested in a matter of minutes. It helps in accelerating the hydrating process needed by vital organs of the body.

The answer to the question of how long does it takes for water to digest helps us know how and when to take it.
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Digestion time of water varies between individual and between women and men. Its also depends on what you have eaten. Generally, it takes six to eight hours for food to pass through your stomach and small intestine.

Food then enters your large intestine (colon) for further digestion, absorption of water and, finally, elimination of undigested food. A lot of science is engaging with this topic, so I found this page helpful.

Worth reading!


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