Digestive System Function
Digestive system function is very important to your well-being. Your digestive system breaks down food. It sends the nutrients obtained from food to other systems in your body by a process called absorption. Here are the facts about this system.
Mouth The mouth is the beginning of your digestive system. You begin the breakdown function in your mouth by chewing and grinding up food with your teeth. Your tongue is a part of the system as well because it moves food around to complete the process. The broken up food travels down the esophagus to your stomach for further processing.
Esophagus The long tube that connects with the mouth and stomach is the esophagus. Food and liquid travels from the mouth to the stomach through this passageway. Without it, eating would not be easy or possible.
Stomach Food is broken down even further in the stomach. The stomach functions as a storage for the digestive system. It contains strong acids that work with its muscular lining to break down food particles. Most food is turned into liquid during this process. However, it is not uncommon to see some fibrous foods in your bowel movements because they were not properly digested in this organ.
Small Intestine, liver and pancreas The small intestine receives nutrition from the stomach. It begins the first step in the absorption process and digestive function. This part of the digestive system contains the duodenum, jejunum and ileum. The duodenum is the location that receives bile from the liver and acid from the pancreas. Liquid from the gallbladder is also transferred here. The jejunum and ileum absorb fat and nutrients from food.
Large intestine This all important part of the digestive system functions as a gateway to the rest of the body. It contains the appendix, cecum, colon and rectum. Each section has its own unique function in the digestive system. These sections contain important arteries, membranes and organs, including the appendix. The appendix is a small organ that extends outward into the abdominal cavity. It contains lymph fluid that helps this system function properly.
Another section, the cecum, lets broken down material pass from the small to large intestine. The colon is the largest section of the large intestine. It processes fiber, water and nutrients. The colon is also the storage for bowel movement. Once the stomach and intestines complete the digestive process, waste is eliminated through the rectum. It is passed through this organ via the anus.