Parts of the Digestive System

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Parts of the Digestive SystemThe digestive system is made up of many organs. Click on the links to learn about the individual parts of the digestive system and their functions

By Sunshineconnelly at en.wikibooks [CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], from Wikimedia Commons

Mouth

The mouth is where digestion first begins. Your teeth tear food into smaller pieces while saliva moistens food. Enzymes in the saliva help break down some carbohydrates in the food into simple sugars. Your tongue then rolls the food into a ball shape (known as a bolus) and the food/bolus is swallowed.

Esophagus (or gullet)

The bolus is swallowed into the esophagus (also known as the gullet). Muscles in the esophagus contract and relax, pushing the bolus along the esophagus into your stomach.

Stomach

The stomach is a muscular bag which churns food around. The walls of the stomach secret digestive juices and strong acids. The digestive juices known as proteases break down the protein in food. In the stomach, food is broken down into a semi-fluid mass known as chyme.

Small intestine

The small intestine absorbs all the nutrients from the digested food into the blood stream. It is longer than the large intestine and digestion ends here. After that, the remaining undigested food passes through the small intestine and enters the large intestine.

Large Intestines

The large intestine is wider than the small intestine. It absorbs water from the undigested food into the blood stream. The undigested food becomes more solid and is passed on to the rectum.

Rectum

It is the second last part in the digestive system that temporarily keeps the undigested food before it passes through the anus as faeces.

Liver

The liver is the largest body part. It cleans your blood and produces a digestive liquid called bile. It cleans your blood by removing the toxins from them. The bile produced by the liver helps to break down fat.

Gall Bladder

It is an important body part as it stores the bile produced by the liver until it is needed for digestion.

Pancreas

The pancreas is located behind the stomach and it produces enzymes in order to digest food. It also produces the hormone insulin in order to control the body’s sugar level.

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