The human intestines are 3 m long. Vegetarians supposedly have longer intestines than meat-eaters. In meat-eating animals, the intestines are shorter as there is less digestive work to do. Part of the digestion has already been done by the food they eat. When someone dies, the intestines lose their elasticity and stretch to around 8.5 m. The intestinal walls contain muscle fibres which enable the intestines to work on the food that passes through them.