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The Digestive System

Mouth

Food begins its journey through the digestive system in the mouth. Inside the mouth are many accessory organs that aid in the digestion of food—the tongue, teeth, and salivary glands. Teeth chop food into small pieces, which are moistened by saliva before the tongue and other muscles push the food into the pharynx.

Esophagus

A muscular tube connecting the pharynx. It carries swallowed masses of chewed food along its length.

Stomach
The stomach is a muscular sac that is located on the left side of the abdominal cavity, just inferior to the diaphragm. In an average person, the stomach is about the size of their two fists placed next to each other. This major organ acts as a storage tank for food so that the body has time to digest large meals properly.

Small Intestine
The small intestine is a long, thin tube about 1 inch in diameter and about 10 feet long. It is located just inferior to the stomach and takes up most of the space in the abdominal cavity. The entire small intestine is coiled like a hose and the inside surface is full of many ridges and folds. These folds are used to maximize the digestion of food and absorption of nutrients. By the time food leaves the small intestine, around 90% of all nutrients have been extracted from the food that entered it.

Large Intestine
The large intestine is a long, thick tube about 2 ½ inches in diameter and about 5 feet long. It is located just inferior to the stomach and wraps around the superior and lateral border of the small intestine. The large intestine absorbs water and contains many symbiotic bacteria that aid in the breaking down of wastes to extract some small amounts of nutrients. Feces in the large intestine exit the body through the anal canal.

Prevention and Maintenance required for good health

  • Eat more frequent meals
  • Eat more Fiber
  • Drink plenty of water

Diseases found in Youth

  • celiac disease.
  • inflammatory bowel disease.
  • irritable bowel syndrome
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Stay Healthy!