As a child I was always told not to drink after eating lots of fruits, especially cherries, as it would supposedly cause a belly-ache. Not only I never dared to try drinking after eating cherries, I see this to be observed quite strictly by most people around here and therefore have no first hand experience. The reason given at Around the World Q/A seems almost the same as in Is drinking water during a meal bad for you?, which was determined to be wrong. What is the truth, is it harmful or not?

As a bonus, if it is proven to be nonsense, it would be interesting for me to known if this is a habit only locally (I live in Czech Republic, Central Europe), or if people around the world often think the same as well.

  • I think it only happens to milk after eating fruits with citric acid. Water can be drunken with anything. Other drinks, it depends. Bottom line: It all depends on the drink. Also, reread the second question you linked to. The proof's there.
    – archaeme
    Jun 3, 2011 at 3:37
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    I find it ironic the person asking the question is Czech. The reason I read this is becuase my husband, who is Czech, said if I eat cherries and drank water my stomach would blow up. I have been doing this for years and nothing has
    – user4081
    Jul 21, 2011 at 18:54
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    I'm from czech republic, and was always told not to drink anything for two hours after eating fruits that have stones, such as cherries, plums, peaches, apricots. As a child, i was always told by my family that my stomach would explode or at the very least i would end up in hospital in agony. To this day, i make sure to eat those fruit before a meal, so when i drink fluids afterwards, i have more than just the fruit in my stomach.
    – user7659
    Jun 25, 2012 at 17:32
  • That is a very interesting thread. I got here because as a child I myself was told not to drink water after eating cherries. I thought I'd mention this as I am from central Italy.
    – user7846
    Jul 14, 2012 at 14:01

1 Answer 1


There is a German article about this (link is dead: archive.org alternative). It describes the reasoning behind this like this:

Fruit contain sugar and yeast (sugar inside the fruit yeast on the outside). If you drink water after eating sweet fruits (in germany the warning is mainly about cherries), your stomach acid is watered down to a point where the yeast can survive and produce alcohol and CO2, which in turn causes flatulence and pain.

It (the article) continues to point out that

  1. Even after eating lots of fruits and drinking lots of water, the stomach still has an ph of 2-4, way to acidic for yeast and
  2. the fruits just don't stay in there for more than 2-3 hours. Yeast needs much more time to proliferate to a point where they could produce enough CO2 to be felt.

It is possible to get belly-ache from eating fruits but this isn't connected to drinking water. If you eat a real lot of fruit or salad or raw vegetables, your regular digestive microbes produce more CO2 than your guts can handle painlessly but that's nothing else than everyone knows from onions, peas or beans.

The article states self experiments by Dr. Eckart von Hirschhausen (the author) and Michael Blaut (German Institute of Nutrition Sciences / Deutsches Institut für Ernährungsforschung), both ending without any painful experiences.

  • 2
    Great. The article even shows this advice is widespread in Germany as well, partially answering my bonus question (Germany being a direct neighbour with many cultural ties, it makes the advice still a kind of local).
    – Suma
    Jun 15, 2011 at 11:11
  • I would like to mention that my own experience is contrary to the experiment mentioned. I cannot eat more than a handful of sweet cherries without risking stomach cramps(which i think is unrelated to water tho). Simmering the cherries helps :D .I am from Germany and dont drink after cherries was advice from my grandparents.
    – Stefan
    Jun 30, 2012 at 15:59
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    @coleopterist Thanks for keeping the answer up to date. I wouldn't copy-paste the entirearticle into the answer as that might lead to legal problems. Additionally the key points are reproduced in the answer.
    – Nicktar
    Jul 11, 2014 at 10:45

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