Nutrition Essay

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Human Digestion Summary Jennifer Snyder SCI/241 5/23/2012 Lori Jumps Human Digestion Summary The human digestion system is a complex system that provides us a way to process the foods and liquids we consume. Our body needs to have the ability to break down the food so it becomes digestible molecules. What the body does not need, is processed for excretion. Reading about our digestion process, you never stop to think about all that goes into the eating motion. It is very interesting to learn. Depending on how much and what type of food is consume, it usually takes 2 to 6 hours to go through the digestive system. When we put food in our mouths, our reaction is to chew the food so that it can be safely swallowed. Teeth are used to chew the harder foods but even people missing teeth are able to chew food that is softer. The tongue helps us to keep the food in our mouth and also aids in the swallowing process. We have a gland in our mouths called the salivary gland that creates a chemical reaction called salivary enzymes. These enzymes help with the breakdown of our foods. When someone swallows the food it is carried to the stomach via the esophagus. This is a long tube that connects the mouth to the stomach. There is a valve-like flap that keeps food out of the lungs. Once the partially digested foods are swallowed, it goes into the stomach. Inside the stomach, we have a very strong acid called gastric acid that continues to break down the foods. The content of the stomach in this process is called chyme. Then the chyme is passed into the small intestine. The duodenum is the first part of the small intestines where the next process of digestion occurs. From there, it passes into the jejunum and finally the ileum, which is at the end of the small intestine. The liver and gallbladder are organs that aid in the digestion and absorption of fat.

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