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the passage of digested products from the intestinal lumen through mucosal cells and into the bloodstream or lacteals
alimentary canal
the digestive tract from the mouth to the anus
an enzyme in the saliva and pancreatic juice that catalyzes the breaking down of starch, glycogen, and related polysaccharides into more simple and readily usable forms of sugar
the inhalation of fluid or solid objects into the lower airways or lungs
alkaline solution produced by the liver and important for the emulsification of lipids
the mixture of partly digested food and digestive secretions found in the stomach and small intestine during the digestion of a meal; it is a varicolored, thick, nearly liquid mass
the process by which food is broken down mechanically and chemically in the gastrointestinal tract and converted to absorbable forms
the uppermost cartilage of the larynx located immediately posterior to the root of the tongue; covers the entrance of the larynx when a person swallows and prevents food or liquids from entering the airway
acute or chronic inflammation of the stomach lining
gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
a common condition in which acid from the stomach (gastric and/or duodenal) flows back into the esophagus, causing discomfort and, in some instances, damage to the esophageal lining
hydrochloric (HCl) acid
an inorganic acid normally present in gastric juice; destroys fermenting bacteria that might cause intestinal tract disturbances
the process of taking substances (particularly food) into the gastrointestinal tract
pancreatic enzyme that breaks down triglycerides into free fatty acids and glycerol to be used in the body
lower esophageal sphincter
the sphincter around the opening of the esophagus into the stomach; separates these linked organs from each other and prevents the reflux of stomach acids into the esophagus; also called the cardiac sphincter
chewing; involves coordination of the large temporal, masseter, and pterygoid muscles as well as other smaller muscles of the mandible and tongue to grind food under the influence of the mandibular division of cranial nerve V
sum of all of the body’s chemical reactions
the chief enzyme of gastric juice, which converts proteins into proteoses and peptones; formed by the chief cells of gastric glands and producing its maximum activity at a pH of 1.5–2
the antecedent of pepsin existing in the form of granules in the chief cells of gastric glands
muscular contractions and relaxations that propel food through the GI tract
pancreatic enzyme that breaks down proteins in the diet; also provides protection from organisms that may live in the intestines, such as certain bacteria and yeast
the fluid secretion of the salivary glands and oral mucous gland that begins the process of food digestion; moistens food for tasting, chewing, and swallowing; initiates digestion of starches; moistens and lubricates the mouth; acts as a solvent for excretion of waste products; also known as spit or spittle
upper esophageal sphincter
a sphincter that keeps the opening between the posterior pharynx and the proximal esophagus closed, except during swallowing; maintained principally by the cricopharyngeal muscle

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