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The Human Body Lesson I honestly can’t tell if it’s a pie eating contest or she’s trying out for “The Walking Dead.” • Digestion is the dismantling of food into its chemical components to be used for fuel. • The Alimentary Canal is the 30ft long set of tubing that food passes through. • It begins at the mouth where food enters, and ends at the anus where left over solid waste exits. • The mouth is the first step of digestion. Food is physically broken down by the teeth. • Saliva is produced by the Salivary Glands. It chemically breaks down food and lubricates it. • Saliva is produced more when you smell or see food. • The tongue and cheek then roll the food into small balls for easier swallowing. Lots of Saliva • The Esophagus is a short length of tube between the pharynx and the stomach. • It squeezes food down to the stomach through a process called peristalsis. Making a peanut butter sandwich in space Peristalsis is what allows astronauts to swallow food to their stomachs while pretending to be space bass eating gummy worms. • The stomach is a bag-like organ that is closed at both ends with valve-like sphincter muscles. • The stomach stores food for about four hours before heading into the small intestine. It expands as it fills with food. • It breaks down food by churning it around. • The pyloric valve opens, letting food enter the small intestine. Let's Journey to the Stomach! A view from inside the stomach • The acid found in your stomach is called Hydrochloric Acid. • It is strong enough to burn through skin but your stomach is protected by a layer of mucus. • Your stomach also contains enzymes, which help to break down proteins. Sometimes your stomach acid can eat a hole through the wall of your stomach or duodenum. This is called an ulcer. This Cheeseburger is NOT in Paradise • After leaving the stomach, food passes through the Duodenum, the first part of the small intestine. • The Small Intestine is the longest part of the alimentary canal. It is 20ft long and this is where most digestion takes place. • Food is further broken down by bile and pancreatic juice. Ironically, the small intestines of a pig looks like sausage….which is made from pig. • Bile is a digestive juice that is produced in the liver and stored in the gall bladder. It helps to break down fatty acids. • The pancreas produces enzymes that help break down proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. • The Large Intestine is about 5 ft. long and is shorter but much thicker than the small intestine. • Most digestion has happened at this point but some salts and water are absorbed here. • It holds waste in the rectum until it exits through the anus. • Chyme is the name for food after it has been churned and mixed with bile and other digestive juices.