In the last blog, we learned about nutrition, but do you know anything about the bodily system that takes the nutrients and turns it into fuel for your body? It is important to look at the systems behind every day processes that are essential to life. Specifically, the digestive system is a critical bodily system that is key to digesting the food we eat, making it into energy we can use and also getting rid of any material we can’t use. Without this system we would not ingest the important nutrients that help us grow and develop. This is why it is important to understand the system’s function as well as the impact it can have on our health.
6 Surprising Things You May Not Have Known About Your Digestive System
- Emotions (as well as stress) and brain disorders impact how we digest our food.
- Our stomach has the ability to stretch and contain up to 4 pounds of at one time, but please do not put this to the test!
- Fiber is what is left behind when the other parts of your food has been digested. So, make sure you eat your dietary fiber because it is key to not only digestive but also overall health.
- Don’t forget to drink up! By drinking adequate amounts of water, it can keep your stool soft and make any trips to the bathroom much more comfortable.
- The gastrointestinal system, which is part of our digestive system, hosts more than 500 species of bacteria. These bacteria fight off disease, absorb nutrients and support our immune system.
- Lastly, your digestive system has a mini-brain also known as the “Second Brain”. The scientific name of this brain is the Enteric Nervous System (ENS) and it regulates the functioning of our digestive system.
Author: Angelica Ortega, 4-H Intern