If you’re trying to relieve pain in a hurry, you may take a couple of over-the-counter pills or some prescription medication. If you do, you might want to try something new.
I’m not saying don’t take the pill. The new thing to try could be to lie down while taking it, and more specifically, lying down on your right side.
Researchers looking at the way body position can impact pill absorption found that when a person was lying on their right side, the pills got to the deepest part of the stomach faster, allowing them to dissolve more than twice as fast as if they were standing up.
Most people never think about their body position when taking a pill, and the results even shocked the study’s author.
Researchers knew that most pills don’t start working until the stomach ejects its contents into the intestine. This could mean that a pill landing in the deepest part of the stomach, called the antrum, would begin dissolving faster and emptying its contents more quickly.
To get the pill there, however, a posture that uses gravity and the natural asymmetry of the stomach can help.
Hence lying on your right side.
Just how big of a difference can it make?
A pill that dissolves in 10 minutes when lying on your right side could take 23 minutes to dissolve if you’re standing upright or more than 100 minutes if you’re lying on your left side. Laying on your back would take about as much time as standing.
Interestingly, researchers also found that posture’s impact on pill absorption and dissolution was equivalent to a person with poor stomach conditions, meaning their gut doesn’t function properly.
So, if you need fast relief or fast action, take about 20 minutes to lie on your right side after taking a pill. It may make a huge difference in how quickly you’ll feel better.