Digestive System Facts for Kids
The digestive system is a very important part of our body that helps us break down food and absorb nutrients. It’s a long tube with different organs that play a role in the digestion process. Here are some digestive system facts that every kid should know.
The digestion process starts in the mouth, where we chew our food and mix it with saliva. Saliva contains enzymes that start the breakdown of food.
Once we swallow, the food moves down the esophagus (a muscular tube that connects the mouth to the stomach) via a series of muscular contractions (peristalsis) which moves the food down.
The stomach is a muscular sac that further breaks down food using gastric juices containing Hydrochloric acid and enzymes.
4. Small intestine
The small intestine is a long tube where most of the nutrients from food are absorbed into the bloodstream. It is a remarkable organ- it is around 20 feet long, despite being only about one inch wide! Food continues to move through the small intestine with the help of muscular contractions and absorption occurs via the lining of the small intestine.
5. Large intestine
The large intestine is shorter but wider than the small intestine, and functions to absorb water, electrolytes, and vitamins from feces, the undigested remains of food.
Feces are stored in the rectum, which is the last part of the digestive system and is a muscular sac that holds solid wastes until we are ready to get rid of them.
When we are ready to pass solid waste, it leaves our body via the anus.
8. Healthy eating
The digestive system performs the important task of breaking down the food we eat and converting it into energy for our body’s cells. Maintaining a healthy diet with varied proteins, fruits and vegetables, and drinking plenty of water can help ensure your digestive system operates effectively.