ByMichael Ormsbee, Ph.D.

You are watching: All body processes relating to food

,Florida State UniversityEdited by Kate Findley, The great Courses Daily

It’s a brand-new year, and also like countless other people, you might be starting a brand-new diet arrangement in bespeak to get in better shape. However how much do you yes, really understand around how your food is processed as soon as it’s inside your body?What exactly happens to the food the you eat?Michael Ormsbee, Ph.D. The Florida State university spoke v The good Courses at length about the subject.

After food is consumed, the intricate procedure of digestion and absorption involves breaking down complicated molecules into smaller particles. Photo by explode / Shutterstock

Purpose of Digestion and Absorption

Digestion and absorption prepare the food girlfriend eat because that storage or come be burned as energy. First, digestion takes location as your body breaks under the food right into individual nutrients. Next, absorption occurs together the body absorbs the individual nutrient to either usage them or store them because that later.

Once you take it a bite of food, the first section of the cradle (GI) tract that it hits is the mouth. The food then travels under the esophagus and also enters into the stomach to be chemically and also mechanically broken down into smaller fragments.

Next, these food fragments go into the tiny intestine complied with by the big intestine. Everything nutrients and materials the body does not usage up follow me that process are excreted through the rectum and also the anal canal.

Along the route, her pancreas, gallbladder, and liver all aid digest and also absorb the food by producing various enzymes. These are specialty proteins that aid reactions happen in your body, and also the enzyme solutions they make also aid with the breakdown and move of foods.

Food path from Mouth come Stomach

When food enters her mouth, water in your saliva—along through two significant digestive enzymes called alpha-amylase and also lingual lipase—begin come dissolve and also chemically digest her food.

Once the food is blended with saliva, it’s currently referred to as a bolus. The bolus leaves your mouth and travels through the pharynx and into her esophagus.

The esophagus has a sphincter at the top called the esophageal sphincter, and this separates the dental cavity from your pharynx. Then, a wavelike neuromuscular movement, known as peristalsis, wake up to significantly move the bolus of food down your esophagus.

Next, her food heads down to her stomach through one more sphincter, referred to as the gastroesophageal sphincter. This whole esophageal process—which requires the bolus that food relocating from the optimal to the bottom of her esophagus—usually takes around 10 seconds.

The bolus climate enters into your stomach.

Stomach’s function in cradle Process

The stomach is the significant site of chemistry digestion, where any type of larger food items continuing to be are damaged down right into individual nutrients. Because that example, large carbohydrates are damaged into individual sugars, and big proteins are damaged down into individual amino acids.

This process has to occur since whole carbohydrates, fats, and proteins room too huge to enter your body from her GI tract. So, it is the smaller structure blocks the the larger macronutrients the are needed to actually go into your human body from the GI tract.

While the mouth and the stomach space both referred to as digestive organs, they carry out things a little bit differently.

The mouth largely takes care of the physical breakdown of food with chewing and the stomach takes care of the chemical breakdown of food utilizing very details enzymes:

Pepsin breaks down huge proteins into smaller amino acids.Alpha-amylase division starches into simple carbohydrates.Gastric lipase breaks down some fats right into smaller components that are straightforward to absorb.

Along v these three key enzymes, several other hormones and also secretions beat a role in the chemistry digestion activities of the stomach. So, the stomach is where partially digested food is combined with stomach juices and enzymes to produce a substance referred to as chyme.

The Not-So-Small Intestine

Once food is completely mixed and also the chyme is ready to be emptied out the the stomach, that moves through yet one more sphincter, called the pyloric sphincter, and also enters right into your small intestine.

The small intestine is the key site for completing the digestion process. The is likewise the main site that absorbs all of the nutrient that did you do it just broken down.

Contrary to its name, this organ is much from little in both length and also in importance. For example, if you were to clearly the little intestine into a straight line, it would certainly stretch out to be about 20 feet long. Also, the surface area spreads the end to be around 300 m2.

Picture a three-foot-wide walkway the is much more than 3 football fields in length. This is the lot of room that your little intestines would certainly take up.

Having such a vast surface area is a unique element of the small intestine, thus, allowing the human body to maximize digestion and also absorption.

How long Does absorption Take?

Once all the nutrients are damaged down right into their easiest forms, they space taken up right into the cell of the GI tract to it is in transported throughout the whole body. This is wherein the process of absorption really occurs.

Most that the carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that you consume room generally absorbed within around 30 minutes after getting to the tiny intestines.

Any product that is not soaked up by the time it get the finish of the ileum, or the last part of the small intestine, passes through the ileocecal valve and then right into the large intestine or the colon.

Overall, it can take almost everywhere from 12–70 hrs for the food remnants to pass all the method through come the colon.

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“Overall, your body ingredient is highly influenced by the digestion and also absorption the the nutrients from the food you eat,” claimed Dr. Michael Ormsbee, combine Professor in the room of Nutrition, Food, and also Exercise scientific researches at Florida State University. “Having a far better understanding of these processes will help you to track in an ext effectively to what her body is telling you.”

This short article was edited by Kate Findley, Writer for The great Courses Daily, and proofread by Angela Shoemaker, Proofreader and Copy Editor because that The an excellent Courses Daily.