This essay is about the digestive system organs and functions. It covers information about the path food travels.

Essay by elmiusJMWJunior High, 8th gradeA+, January 2003

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The digestive system is very important to the body. Without it, we would not be able to live. It is a series of hollow organs joined in a long, twisting tube from the mouth to the anus. The tubes actually are about 30 feet long if they were stretched out, but seem smaller because of the way they are wrapped around. The main parts are the mouth, teeth, esophagus, stomach, small intestines, large intestines, colon, rectum, and anus. The pancreas, gallbladder, and liver are also key parts because of their functions in the digestive system.

There are four main functions of the digestive system. It processes and stores food so the body can use it. It produces enzymes, hydrochloric acid, mucus, hormones and Vitamin K. The system absorbs nutrients to send throughout the blood stream. Lastly, it eliminates waste.

Saliva and teeth begin the track by breaking down the food.

Between 1 and 1.5 liters of saliva are produced by your body every day. From there, the food passes through the esophagus and muscles are contracted to squeeze the food down the tubes. This muscle movement is called peristalsis. Then, it dumps into the stomach. The stomach has a very thick wall, with three layers of protective muscle. Strong gastric juices are then dumped to break the food down more. Every day more than 1.5 liters are used to do that.

When food particles leave the stomach, they are only about one millimeter in size. From the stomach, the food now moves to the small intestines. More enzymes are added here from the pancreas to help to further break down food. On top of that, the gallbladder releases bile which it had stored from the liver earlier. The bile is used to mainly break down fats. The...