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Why Do I Get Full Sooner Than Other People?

by Patricia L. Raymond, M.D., F.A.C.P., F.A.C.G.

newsletter-graphicBelieve it or not, some people get full sooner than normal.

Part of feeling full and satisfied has to do with how stretched out the stomach is—a function of both how much you put in it and how fast it escapes. Liquids leave your stomach immediately, while solids undergo a grinding process and then pass into the small intestine in small dabs for absorption. It takes normal stomachs 20 to 50 minutes to be about halfway empty.

If your stomach empties slower than normal—a possibility if you either feel full early in a meal (called early satiety) or regurgitate food material over an hour after consumed—the cause may be a condition called gastroparesis (slow emptying due to nerve damage). Gastroparesis has various potential causes itself, including diabetes and hypothyroidism (sluggish thyroid). If we don't find an obvious reason, we chalk your problem up to a likely viral infection that affected your stomach nerves and place you on a low-fiber diet and perhaps some medication to enhance the stomach emptying.

PATRICIA L. RAYMOND, M.D., F.A.C.P., F.A.C.G., is a board-certified gastroenterologist with Simply Screening in Chesapeake, Va.; author of Colonoscopy: It'll Crack U Up!; and assistant professor or clinical internal medicine at Eastern Virginia Medical School.


Last updated and/or approved: June 2010.
Original article appeared in spring 2007 former print magazine. Bio current as of spring 2007. This article is not meant as individual advice. Please see our disclaimer.
Comments (1)add comment
get skinny fast
written by how to get skinny fast , May 21, 2011

people who don't eat a lot will have smaller stomachs so get full quicker. But if you start eating more food then you usually find that it becomes easier to eat more after a while.
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