Question

Susan Jane Hogarth sjhogart at unity.ncsu.edu
Sun Feb 9 19:25:44 EST 1997


Steve Buckley wrote:
> 
> The simple problem (to my mind at least) is that if a person eats, for the
> sake or argument, 1Kg of food would they weigh 1Kg more if they were
> weighed straight after eating?
> 
>  I would really like to hear your opinions possible backed up by some
> scientific reasoning as friends of mine swear blind the food will
> miraculously weigh less once in the body!

You're right. Your friend is wrong. As a matter of fact, your friend is
_so_ wrong, I wonder if you two are talking about the same thing... do
both of you mean the same thing when you say "weighed straight after
eating"? To *me*, that seems very clear. Here:

I weigh 135 pounds <well, it's USENET; I can weigh what I want!>
I eat a 3-pound cheesecake, washing it down with 1/2-pound of kool-ade. 
Voila! Now I weigh 138.5 pounds - until I piss, sweat, crap, or vomit (I
guess you lose carbon through respiration, too, but that can hardly
amount to much in a half-hour or so...).

I guess that's proably not the sort of "scientific reasoning" you're
looking for. I find it hard to get more "scientific" than that, though,
since it seems so common-sensical to me... How about this: the digestive
tract is basically on the *exterior* of the body (in the sense that we
have a continuous tube going through us, from which we _absorb_
food...). So, right after you've eaten, it's as if you were simply
"carrying around" a few extra ounces of food, right?

Anyway, you are right and your friend is wrong.

-- 
'To you I'm an atheist; to God, I'm the Loyal Opposition.'
        Woody Allen, from "Stardust memories"

http://www4.ncsu.edu/unity/users/s/sjhogart/public/home.html
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