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Dig system review

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Miller & Levine BIOLOGY (pp 875-881; 889-890) Page 1
FUNCTIONS OF THE DIGESTIVE SYSTEM: What are the functions of the digestive system?
The conversion of foods into useful molecules both in human and in animals is the job of the digestive system.
The digestive system converts food into small molecules that can be used by the cells of the body.
Food is processed by the digestive system in 4 phases:
o Ingestion process of putting food into your mouth the
opening to the digestive tract.
o Digestion as food passes through the digestive system, it is
broken down in 2 ways:
Mechanical digestion - physical breakdown of large
pieces of food into smaller pieces. These smaller pieces
can be swallowed and accessed by digestive enzymes.
Chemical digestion the enzymes break down food into
the small molecules that the body can use.
o Absorption once food has been broken into small molecules,
it can be absorbed by cells in the small intestine. From the small
intestine, the molecules enter the circulatory system which
transports them throughout the body.
o Elimination the digestive system cannot digest and absorb all
the substances in food that enter the body. Some materials, such
as cellulose, travel through the large intestine and are eliminated
from the body as feces.
THE PROCESS OF DIGESTION: What occurs during digestion?

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