Do you have to wait 30 minutes after eating to go in the
Do you have to wait 30 Minutes after eating to go in the pool? Well,
a lot of kids all over the world are awaiting the definitive answer!
Kids can now rejoice worldwide because the proof in is! You don't
actually have to wait 30 minutes after eating before you can go in
the pool. The myth busters have come to the rescue. For decades,
countless numbers of children worldwide have been forced to sit next
to the swimming pool, having been told that if they go in the pool
water less than a half hour after eating, that they would suffer
horrible cramps and possibly drown.
Hard to tell when this old wives' tale
was invented, or why......but a new study by the American Academy Of
Pediatrics and the American Red Cross exposes the facts that there
are no known side-effects to jumping right into a pool, lake or
ocean immediately after eating food. Neither agency makes any
specific recommendations about any "waiting time" after eating
before taking a dip.
One publication reports that "there has
never been a single reported drowning incident linked to cramps
brought on by swimming too soon after eating".
CBC Health News reports that "Contrary
to a long-standing tradition, you don't need to wait for one full
hour after eating before heading into the pool". Parents often
tell their children to wait 30 minutes or one hour after having a
heavy meal before they swim. The advice that has been handed down
over generations doesn't hold water, said Dr. Richard Fedorak, head
of gastroenterology at the University of Alberta Hospital.
"That's a myth, and we need to myth
bust," said Fedorak. The details of the old wives' tale is
based on the mistaken idea that the stomach will take away some of
the oxygen needed by our muscles during swimming. In reality, people
have more than enough oxygen to supply both the stomach and their
It is therefore unlikely that diving
into the water soon after a meal will leave someone in so much
distress that they drown. "The simple average meal isn't going to
affect your ability to get into the water," Fedorak assured.
Competitive swimmers, though, generally
shouldn't eat a large meal before an event because there's a risk
the cramps could hinder their performance. But the average kid
playing in a home swimming pool would not have similar problems.
While eating is OK before a swim,
drinking alcohol is not advisable. A study published in the Journal
Of Pediatrics found one-quarter of teenagers who drowned were
intoxicated. A similar study on adults found 41 per cent of drowning
deaths involved alcohol.
Thanks to all the Myth Busters, for
helping to shut up those noisy kids at every pool party and barbeque
This will be a welcome relief to the
millions of nagging kids worldwide who just cannot wait those
painful 30 minutes between eating and swimming!