Essay Title: 

The Process of Digestion

April 1, 2016 | Author: | Posted in health and medicine, nutrition

The digestive process is essential for the body to survive (Horton 2002 . Proteins , carbohydrates and fats , nutrients necessary for survival , are broken down in the digestive process . The process requires three major phases , sub-divided into mechanical manipulation (ingestion and chemical action (digestion and absorption

Digestion begins in the mouth with mastication . The tongue and teeth break and food into smaller particles . Salivary glands break food down further using liquid enzymes . Once the food is softened , the tongue rolls the food into a ball and pushes it towards the back of the throat [banner_entry_middle]

br Swallowing occurs next , as a small flap of tissue called the epiglottis prevents food from entering the windpipe . The food is sent into the esophagus , which is a muscular tube connecting the mouth with the stomach . The esophagus sends the food into the stomach where peristalsis occurs

Peristalsis involves stomach contractions that twist and turn the food The stomach produces gastric juices during this process and mixes these juices with the food . Gastric juices contain enzymes such as protease that begin the digestion of proteins (Enzyme Essentials , 2003 . Proteins are the only major food group that begins digesting in the stomach although they are only partially digested in the stomach . The food is churned and mixed with stomach fluids in to produce chyme . The newly formed chyme is then passed into the small intestine

Digestion is completed in the small intestine , where the liver releases bile to prepare fats for digestion . Absorption of materials also occurs in the small intestine , and materials not absorbed are passed into the large intestine . In the large intestine , water and salts are absorbed and the remaining waste is excreted out of the body through the anus (Wardlow , 2002

A lack of intake of vital nutrients , broken down in the digestive process , can result in serious health consequences . As a result , the digestive process of ingestion , digestion and absorption plays a central role in the human body ‘s ability to thrive , secrete and produce


Horton R . Principles of Biochemistry . Saddle River , New

Jersey . 2002

Enzyme Essentials . The Importance of Proteins . Retrieved December 18 2006 from

HYPERLINK “http /www .enzymeessentials .com /HTML /protease .html http /www .enzymeessentials .com /HTML /protease .html

Wardlow , G . Perspectives in Nutrition . New York , NY . 2002… [banner_entry_footer]


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