Myth: Meat is so hard to digest that it putrefies in your stomach.

Fact: This is a salvo sometimes fired by vegetarians at equally misinformed meat eaters who insist that meatless diets are nutritionally inadequate.   In fact, meat is fully digested and broken down into amino acids needed for cell growth and repair, says  Accredited Practising Dietitian Maria Packard, a spokesperson for the Dietitians’ Association of Australia. However, meat’s high protein content does slow down the rate of digestion.

“On average a meal that includes meat will take three hours to leave the stomach as opposed to a glass of lemonade which takes a few minutes,” Packard says.

Paula Goodyer