Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Facts To Know About Digestion

Your gastro intestinal tract is as long as a 30 -ft. tube running from your mouth to your anus, and your gut has the same shape like doughnuts your regularly pass through it.

Your small intestine has so many folds down to the microscopic level. It has a surface area which is about 2,700 sq. feet, enough to cover a tennis court.

Galen, a Roman physician regarded stomach as a quasi-autonomous being that is able to "feel a lack" which rouses a person to seek food.

The gastric physiology comes from the work of William Beaumont, an army surgeon who in 1825 observed the digestive process by inserting food into an unhealed gunshot wound in a French Canadian trapper's stomach :).

It takes 72 hours to digest your holiday dinner; - Carbs will be processed first, a dry, overcooked protein like the holiday turkey will be next, and fat will be the last.

An amino acid found in turkey called Tryptophan is often blames for post meal drowsiness, but the proteins in the meat largely neutralize it.

Serotonin, a major mood-influencing hormone is mostly made not in the head but in your stomach lining.

The calories you burn simply digesting food account for 5-15% of your energy expenditure. Protein and alcohol require the most energy.

Women produce 60% of alcohol dehydrogenase, an enzyme that neutralizes booze, as men do.

A rare condition called achalasia, which prevents swallowing can be treated with Botox that relaxes the esophageal sphincter and undoubtedly makes it look years younger.

Pica, an eating disorder in which sufferers develop appetite for substances like paint and dirt affects 30% of young children. Cause is unknown but is linked to mild mineral deficiencies.

Your stomach's primary digestive juice - hydrochloric acid can dissolve metal, but plastic toys that go down the hatch come out on the other end as good as new. Same thing with crayons, hair and chewing gum that will pass through within a few days, no matter what you've heard.

Pancreatitis comes from fat-digesting enzymes leaking from the pancreatic duct system into surrounding tissues, literally eating you from within.

Water, enzymes, base salts, mucus and bile comprise about 2 galloons of liquid that enters the large intestine. Only 6 tablespoons or so comes out.

Without the colon's ability to recover bodily fluids, animals couldn't survive on dry land.

The loudest human burp recorded was 107.1 decibels, - as loud as a chain saw from 3 feet which was produced by Paul Hunn in September 2008, on TV.