How to Feel Light + Alert After Eating a Huge Meal

Last week I talked about losing weight while eating a ton of food and not exercising.  Besides losing a few LB’s in the old country, I also felt rather light and energized after eating my pasta-heavy meals.

There’s one part I left out – a ninja trick I learned from Dr. John Douillard for dealing with the sluggishness that comes after a huge meal:

Lean to the left.

An old remedy for indigestion, lying on your left side helps you break down food. Douillard points out in The 3-Season Diet that “because of the asymmetrical shape of the stomach, lying your left side allows the food to flow through it and into the small intestine.

It also helps you relax and lets your body digest efficiently before you start bouncing around like a nutcase again.  It’s like a mini siesta!

See – even Duncan and Ellie know they need to take a break after eating!  I’ll have to remind Duncan which side is his left.

Rushing from a big meal straight back to activity is a GREAT way to feel gassy, sleepy, and desperate for a sugary snack a few hours later – because you never gave your food a chance to get into your bloodstream and become your fuel.

I practiced this trick after eating about a pound of cheese-laden gnocchi at lunch. It left me feeling as light as if I had eaten a crisp salad that afternoon!

So if you feel like you’re going to doze off after a big meal, try lying on your left side for 10 minutes and see if you feel more energized and alert (and perhaps your stomach even will sound less like World War III).

If your office has an open floor plan, lying down in your cubicle or on top of a file cabinet might be awkward. Instead, you can lean to the left side of your desk while sitting at your computer for 10 min. You’ll get a couple of “Um, are you ok?”’s, but it trust me, it’s worth it.

Give it a try and let me know: how else do you cope with digesting a big meal when you need to be productive right after? Leave a comment and if you enjoyed this post, please share!


  • Betsy Mercede says:

    Leaving for a week in New Hampshire – will be trying your digestion tip for sure!

  • Kindke says:

    This may actually be more than voodoo science here, laying on your left means the entrance to the small intestine is directly vertically above your stomach which means ( due to gravity pulling down ), gastric emptying is delayed and food is more properly and fully digested in the stomach before entering the small intestine.

    As im aware, delayed gastric emptying is associated with much better postprandial incretin responses, which in turn is important for proper handling of your metabolism.

    In contrast, if you lay on right side after a large meal, now food will flow into small intestine too fast ( gravity pulling food down ), this gives you a stomach ache and makes you feel sick.

  • Ha! I’m loving this ‘secret weapon’ food trick!

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