Definition of indigestible in US English:



  • 1(of food) difficult or impossible to digest.

    • ‘Toasted cheese was even more indigestible and apt to cause nightmares.’
    • ‘Occasionally, cats eat grass in order to clear their stomach of indigestible food, like bones, fur, and feathers.’
    • ‘One of the papers in Science reveals the genetics of a dominant gut bug that serves humans well by breaking down otherwise indigestible food.’
    • ‘Fiber, which is the indigestible part of fruits, vegetables and whole-grain foods, helps you achieve flat abs for three reasons.’
    • ‘Foods that are ordinarily indigestible or even allergenic to deer may become daily menu items in situations of severe stress from weather or scarcity of other food.’
    • ‘Phytase is an enzyme that breaks down phytate so that some of the previously indigestible phosphorus in feed can be digested.’
    • ‘With only 44p spent per student lunch, pupils were too often dining on fatty, salty, indigestible rubbish.’
    • ‘But because most beans are indigestible unless cooked at high temperatures, a raw-food diet contains few of them.’
    • ‘Technically, probiotics are indigestible starches that good bacteria feast on.’
    • ‘The pellets are the indigestible portions of the heron's food.’
    • ‘I found the heavy protein practically indigestible.’
    • ‘It is a myth that goats will eat anything, however indigestible.’
    • ‘It's the indigestible crystalline starch apparently.’
    • ‘However, indigestible cellulose can be converted into sugars for use as food or as nutrients to grow yeasts, fungi, or plant cell cultures.’
    • ‘This for me was very refreshing considering I had indigestible food for breakfast.’
    • ‘Sperm whales also produce ambergris, probably from waste coalescing around indigestible substances in the intestinal tract.’
    • ‘Ice cream is particularly indigestible since it contains cold fat.’
    • ‘Right now I am trapped in a cell which is beyond filthiness with indigestible food.’
    • ‘In Asia it is well known that raw and unfermented soy beans are indigestible.’
    • ‘Soaking beans not only cuts down on the cooking time (preserving nutrients) but it helps break down the indigestible sugars that can cause gas.’
    starchy, filling, heavy, solid, substantial, lumpy, leaden
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  • 2Too complex or awkward to read or understand easily.

    ‘a turgid and indigestible book’
    • ‘He serves up vast helpings of indigestible fact.’
    • ‘The truth is perfectly clear and almost perfectly indigestible.’
    • ‘Far too many words for comfort, quite indiscriminately absorbed, and now forming a stodgy, indigestible mass in my short-term memory.’
    • ‘A written constitution would replace the present mass of verbose and indigestible devolution legislation.’
    • ‘He kept up to date by reading the papers and gorging on TV, digesting the indigestible.’


Late 15th century: via French from late Latin indigestibilis, from in- ‘not’ + digestibilis (see digestible).