A soda and pizza binge might make your stomach distend, meaning your stomach will swell as a result of pressure from the inside.

If you’ve ever eaten too much food it won’t surprise you to learn that the verb distend traces back to the Latin words dis-, meaning “apart,” and tendere, meaning “to stretch.” Your stomach will certainly feel stretched out if you do something — like overeat — that causes it to distend. The word distend often applies to stomachs — a pregnancy would also cause a stomach to distend — but it can also refer to anything that is stretched out as a result of internal pressure.

Definitions of distend

v cause to expand as if by internal pressure

“The gas distended the animal's body”
Type of:
make bloated or swollen

v swell from or as if from internal pressure

“The distended bellies of the starving cows”
Type of:
intumesce, swell, swell up, tumefy, tumesce
expand abnormally

v become wider

Type of:
become broader or wider or more extensive

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