Newsroom Article

Fact or Myth: You have to wait 30 minutes after eating to swim

​You’ve probably heard that if you swim on a full stomach you’ll cramp up or even worse, drown. But is there any truth to this water safety concern? We asked our expert, Tom Gutwein, MD, to weigh in: 

Swimming after eating depends on 2 things:

  1. How much you eat 

  2. How hard/vigorous you swim

If you consume a small meal, and are swimming at a leisurely pace, you are fine. If you are eating a meal and go in deep water to swim laps, you need to wait at least 30 minutes. When you swim shortly after eating a heavy meal, you are exposing yourself to a risky situation.  

Dr. Gutwein’s recommendation: Resting your palate for 30 minutes before going for a vigorous swim.

Back to top