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Classes of Nutrients:
There are six classes of nutrients the body needs: carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins, minerals and water. It is important to consume their daily six nutrients to build and maintain healthy bodily function. Poor health can be caused by an imbalance of nutrients whether by excess or deficiency. Moreover, most of the nutrients are involved in cell signaling (as part of building blocks of hormones or hormonal signaling cascades), deficiency or excess of various nutrients affects hormonal function indirectly. So, as they largely regulate the expression of genes, hormones represent a link between nutrition and our genes are expressed in our phenotype. The strength and nature of this link are continually under investigation, however, recent observations have shown the crucial role of nutrition in hormonal activity and function and therefore health. As:
They are most abundant molecules contain 3 elements such as: carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. Its basic units are the monosaccharides. The definition of carbohydrates is that they are aldehydes or ketone derivatives of polyhydric alcohols and serve as a reserve. Are classified as monosaccharides, disaccharides and polysaccharides Monosaccharides: triose, tetroses, pentoses, hexoses Disaccharides: sucrose, maltose, isomaltose and lactose Polysaccharides: glycogen, starch and cellulose
Lipids are a group of organic molecules, most are biomolecules that are composed primarily of carbon and hydrogen and less oxygen, but can also contain phosphorus, sulfur and nitrogen, have as their main feature being hydrophobic or insoluble in water and another in organic solvents. They also work for brain development, metabolism and growth and classified in • Simple (unsaponifiable) such as: fatty acids, terpenes, eicosanoicos, steroids • Complex (saponifiable) as: acylglycerides, phospholipids, glycolipids, waxes
the protein portion that is apoenzyme join a coefactor to catalyze chemical reactions. Some vitamins. specifically the B-complex vitamins. Certain vitamins serve as protectors of the delicate cellular machinery. The enzymes fall into two general classes: simple and complex The active enzyme holoenzymes is complete. which acts as a catalyst. This is the most important function of a protein (collagen) • Immunologic (antibodies) • Enzyme (pepsin). These are called the antioxidants and are best represented by vitamins C and E.Proteins: Proteins are biomolecules formed by linear chains of amino acids. vitamins serve as enzyme assistants. but differ in the fact that the body does not get energy directly from these molecules. or coenzymes. accelerating a chemical reaction. Nutritionists divide the vitamins into two groups based upon how they interact with the body: The first are the water-soluble vitamins. a group that consists of vitaminC and the B vitamins. These vitamins are readily absorbed by . Molecules which act on the enzymes are called substrates and products resulting are. Instead. specifically lipids and carbohydrates. • homeostatic: assist in maintaining the pH (as they act as a chemical buffer) • Signal transduction (rhodopsin) • Protective or defensive (thrombin and fibrinogen Enzyme: An enzyme is a catalytic protein. Proteins play a key role in life and are more versatile biomolecules and more diverse. Are essential for the growth of the organism. They make a huge amount of different functions as: • Structural. • Shrink (actin and myosin). Vitamins Vitamins are similar to the energy nutrients in that they are organic molecules. are directly involved in the processing of energy nutrients.
some minerals. is the major digestive organ responsible for this process. in fact it is probably one of the most important nutrients for the digestive system. This is a complex task and frequently involves the use of minerals such as potassium and sodium to establish concentration gradients to efficiently move water. with a few exceptions. The average human requires about 2. such as sodium and potassium. but rather the abundance of the mineral in the human body.5 liters) of water per day to meet the metabolic requirements of the body. meaning that they are packaged into specialized lipoproteins and transported by the lymphatic system. such as pregnancy. Minerals Minerals are inorganic nutrients that play an important role in the regulation of many of the body’s metabolic functions. Some minerals. D. many minerals function as assistants to metabolic pathways. are poorly absorbed by the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. known as the fat-soluble vitamins (vitamins A. and other factors. Still others help regulate body fluid levels. Nutritionists divide minerals into two broad classes: the trace minerals and the major minerals. do not require special processing. and facilitate the absorption of nutrients into the circulatory and lymphatic systems. Like the vitamins. E. such as dehydration synthesis reactions. A smaller amount is derived from chemical reactions within the body. are quickly absorbed from food and transported by the circulatory system. . Minerals are also the major electrolytes in the circulatory system. or colon. However. and some serve as structural components of bones. Is a water-based system that uses water to move nutrients. deliver digestive enzymes. such as calcium. It is important to note that the terms trace and major do not reflect the importance of the mineral in the body. The other class. health of the system. their sex. Water While the average personmay not consider water to be a nutrient. and K). the digestive system and. are frequently treated in the same manner as the triglycerides.65 quarts (approximately 2. lubricate the length of the gastrointestinal tract. the age of the person. The large intestine.
is the entry point into the human digestive system. but is also serves as the connecting point between the respiratory system and the outside environment.The Upper Gastrointestinal Tract: Oral Cavity. The oral cavity represents an area of intense activity for the body. and Stomach This organ system of the human body is specialized for breaking down incoming food into the needed nutrients for the body’s vast array of metabolic functions. which the food physically passes through.most notably taste. Salivary Glands Vital to the digestive functions of the oral cavity are the secretions of three pairs of accessory glands collectively called the salivary glands. These include the oral cavity. . esophagus. and stomach. the GI tract is frequently divided into two major sections for study. stomach. The Oral Cavity The human mouth. Two pairs are located along the bottom of the oral cavity. The organs of the GI tract are those that physically comprise the tube. These glands are identified by their location in the oral cavity. esophagus. near the mandibula (jawbone). Esophagus. The human mouth is the site of both mechanical and enzymatic digestive processes. The upper GI tract consists of the oral cavity. as well as associated valves and accessory organs. This division. The majority of the organs in the human body are either directly or indirectly associated with the process of digestion. also called the oral cavity or buccal cavity. The sublingular glands are located just below the tongue. The lower GI tract consists primarily of the small intestine and colon. as well as the location of a significant amount of sensory input fromchemical receptors. For convenience. also has some basisin physiological function. Not only are nutrients initially processed in this location. while practical from the standpoint of a reference book. and the submandibular glands are positioned just beneath these. and large intestine (also called the colon). A third set. small intestine. also called the alimentary canal.
is the first stage of mechanical digestion. The importance of the teeth in increasing the surface area of the food for later enzymatic digestion should not be underestimated.called the parotid glands. such as potassium. The action of chewing. or mastication. which serve as pH buffers and activators of enzymatic activity. Mechanical Digestion In the oral cavity. sodium. the chemical secretion of the salivary glands. .5 percent). we require a relatively rapid processing of incoming nutrients. is the first stage of mechanical digestion. Saliva is primarily water (99. By the action of the tongue. Saliva. and phosphates. is actually a complex mixture that performs a variety of functions for the digestive system. the ears. As organisms with a high metabolic rate. and slightly below. which are small projections of the tissue. The shape of the tooth determines its function in mechanical digestion. First. allowing the secretions of the salivary glands to mix freely with the food and stimulating the action of the taste buds. the action of the teeth and tongue break the food into small portions so that it may be sent to the stomach via the esophagus. The tongue also participates in the swallow reflex through the action of the intrinsic muscles. the food is lubricated with saliva to facilitate swallowing and to mix in the enzymes of the salivary glands. Second. This small fraction contains important ions. humans would be required to swallow food whole in much the same manner as snakes. The papillae are sometimes mistakenly referred to as the taste buds. or mastication. Without teeth. which serves to lubricate and moisten the digestive system. Located on the tongue are a series of papillae. chloride. It is the papillae that give the tongue its rough texture. but the taste buds are actually specialized receptors located at the base of certain types of papillae. The action of chewing. are located just in front of. This muscle group also controls the size and shape of the tongue and is involved with speech. the process of mechanical digestion serves several functions. The second stage in the mechanical processing of the food involves the action of the tongue. from protein-rich meats to nutritious vegetables and fruits. the process of mechanical digestion increases the surface area of the food. The combination of different types of teeth in the mouth allows for the processing of a large variety of foods.
depending on the region of the gastrointestinal tract. The next layer inward is a dense section of connective tissue called the submucosa. Instead. The serosa is the outermost layer of the digestive tract and is comprised of connective tissue. or pharynx. Once the swallowing reflex has begun. Located within the submucosa are the major blood and lymphatic vessels. and since the mucosa tissue layer does not contain a large number of folds. a nerve network called the myenteric plexus allows for regulation of activity from the involuntary control centers of the brain. the muscularis externa. Layers of the Digestive System From the esophagus to the anus. The serosa is important in that it forms a connection between the digestive tract and the mesentery. the walls of the digestive tract have the same general structure. the swallowing reflex begins. 2. Directly under the serosa is a double layer of smooth muscle. and muscosa. they are the serosa. as well as another series of nerves called the submucous plexus that provides involuntary regulation of the layer. the esophagus serves as a conduit from the oral cavity. it forces a flap of cartilaginous tissue called the epiglottis downward over the glottis as an added precaution to protect against the food entering the respiratory system. 4. The epithelial cells of the mucosa serve several functions. The tongue moves upward against the roof (hard palate) of the mouth to prevent the food from reentering the oral cavity. submucosa. This layer lines the interior of the digestive tract and thus is in direct contact with the nutrients passing through the system.Swallowing Reflex As the bolus forms in the rear of the oral cavity. Within the wall of the digestive tract are four major tissue layers. an inverted-Y-shaped flap of skin at the rear of the mouth. moves upward to block the nasal passages. Esophagus The esophagus is not a major digestive organ. As the bolus passes into the esophagus. The innermost layer is the mucosa. is a staged process that is partly under voluntary control and partly a reflex action. through the thoracic region of the body and to the stomach. Swallowing. or glottis. These two muscle layers are the inner circular muscle and the outer longitudinal muscle. the following four events occur in rapid succession: 1. From outermost to innermost. or deglutition. muscularis externa. 3. The uvula. . The vocal cords in the larynx tightly close over the opening of the windpipe. with minor variations in each organ to enable specific functions. there is almost no absorption of nutrients through the walls of the esophagus. since the bolus spends only a brief amount of time in the esophagus (between five and nine seconds).
Composition of Gastric Juice The stomach produces about 2 liters of gastric juice per day. it distorts. a human stomach may have a volume as little as 50 millimeters. the parietal cells are responsible for manufacturing hydrochloric acid. Enzymatic Digestion The prime nutrient target of enzymatic digestion in the stomach is protein. There is no absorption of peptides or amino acids through the lining of the stomach. whose purpose is to thoroughly mix the incoming food material with gastric juice. In comparison. forming a semi-solid mixture called chyme. and colon. so that it can pass through the pyloric sphincter into the upper region of the small intestine. When empty. The stomach contains the same tissue layers as are found in the esophagus. The purpose of these processes is to manipulate the chyme to the correct consistency. the areas of the stomach differ in the strength of the smooth muscle and thus the intensity of the peristaltic action. The purpose of protein digestion in the stomach is to initialize the process by destabilizing the structure of the protein. the low pH of the hydrochloric acid activates the pepsinogen enzyme secreted by the chief cells. for digestion. The peristaltic contraction of the smooth muscle that is responsible for mixing the food with gastric juice to produce chyme is initiated in the fundus. the mechanisms of protein digestion in the stomach are very general. In the stomach. as well as the location where the food is mixed and partially digested by mechanical processes. The manufacture of hydrochloric acid is an energy-intense process. and thus the parietal cells have an exceptionally high concentration of mitochondria to generate the needed energy. First. small intestine. The hydrochloric acid serves a number of functions in the stomach. However. Thus. . making them easier to digest. Finally. also called the duodenum.Stomach The stomach is commonly recognized as a muscular sac that functions as a holding site for food before it enters into the small intestine. and not directed at one specific type of protein. the structure of proteins. with some important variations in the secretions and structure of the mucosa layer. the stomach may contain almost 1– 2 liters of food. Mechanical Digestion The stomach is primarily an organ of mechanical digestion. when full. the low pH of the hydrochloric acid acts as a deterrent against bacterial contaminants in the food. Certain surgical procedures can also alter a body’s digestion patterns and are used as a means to treat severe obesity. Second. or denatures.
which isolates the mucosa tissue from the hydrochloric acid. If chemical receptors detect the smell or taste of food. Second. Two factors influence its activity. which relays a signal along the vagus nerves to the submucosal plexus in the stomach. The cephalic phase refers to the interaction of the brain with the stomach. a signal is sent to the medulla oblongata in the brainstem. There are three distinct phases to stomach motility: the cephalic phase. First. The duodenum of the small intestine may also regulate the activity of the stomach during the intestinal phase. usually takes between two to four hours following completion of a meal and is dependent on a large number of factors. . the pH level of the stomach. In addition. The gastric phase involves the activity of the stomach. the amount of distention or stretching of the stomach lining. The duodenum primarily has an inhibitory effect on stomach motility. due to the presence of a large volume of chyme. initiates a neural response called the enterogastric reflex. primarily due to the presence of the mucus layer.Regulating Stomach Motility The emptying of the stomach contents. but this pathway is based on the action of hormones. water and some ions are able to be absorbed directly into the circulatory system. Absorption of Nutrients Very few nutrients are absorbed through the lining of the stomach. both ethyl alcohol and acetylsalicylic acid (aspirin) are able to penetrate the mucus layer and enter into the circulatory system. and intestinal phase. also called motility. However. Distention of the duodenum. The presence of partially digested carbohydrates and fats in the duodenum also activates an inhibitory pathway. gastric phase.
8. 5. What is the purpose of the stomach? 11. 2. Which are the types of nutrients? What are the best-known polysaccharides? Mention three functions of the proteins What types of vitamins exists? What is the most important nutrient? 6. 3.Quiz! 1. 9. 4. Which are the four layers of all the digestive system? What is the acid of the gastric juice? Where begins the enzymatic digestion? 10. How many types of surgery for resolve severe obesity are? Which are them? . Where begins the carbohydrates and lipids digestion? 7.