If you did not have a stomach you could not eat just two or three main meals each day. You would have to eat lots of tiny ones much more frequently. The stomach is like a stretchy storage bag for food. It expands to hold a whole meal. Then the layers of muscle in its walls contract to make it squeeze, first one way, then the other. Meanwhile, tiny glands in the stomach lining release their digestive chemicals, including powerful food – corroding acids and strong nutrient – splitting enzymes. Under this combined physical and chemical attack, after a few hours the food has become a mushy, part – digested soup. Around two to four hours after arriving in your stomach, the part – digested soup begins to leave. Small amounts trickle regularly from the stomach into the next section of the digestive tract – the small intestine.