The Digestive System

This articles gives a brief about our Digestive System, its functions and other aspects related to the digestive system. The article is a part of the series 'Our Body - Greatest Engineering Ever'.

When we bite something and we begin to chew, we commence the activity of the digestive system. As our teeth crush the food particles, a watery substance called 'Saliva' gets mixed into the food to help us swallow it. This saliva is generated in our salivary glands. The food on swallowing it, travels down to the stomach through a tube called Oesophagus. The oesophagus is placed behind the wind pipe. It is made of muscles and pushes the food down into the stomach.

The Digestive System

A flap called the epiglottis is present where the windpipe and the Oesophagus meet. The Epiglottis closes every time we eat. Hence, it prevents food from entering into the air pipe. The stomach is akin to a little sac which crushes the food even more and combines it with many different digestive juices from a gland know as 'Pancreas'. The food is then moved to the small intestine that measures around twenty feet in length and is situated in the lower part of the trunk. The process of Peristalsis begins in our small intestine at this point. Bile from the liver and digestive juices from the pancreas contain proteins known as enzymes. These enzymes are mixed with the food. This process enables the movement of minute particles of food into the blood through projections called the Vile, which are projected on the inner walls of our small intestine.

These nutrients are then deployed by the body to perform various actions. The digested nutrients are passed to the Liver which converts them into better and quickly usable forms, like Glucose. The remains which are not useful to the body, pass into the large intestine where the liquid from the food is adsorbed. Whatever is left is converted into lumps of faeces. This is then discarded out from the anus. The whole passage, from the mouth to the anus, is called the alimentary canal.


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