Friday, February 13, 2015

Understanding GI

The human digestive [gastro-intestinal] tract--also called the GI tract--is a lengthy hollow organ tubular system designed to process and absorb nutrient materials from our environment which fuel all of our internal biochemical processes directed at growth, repair and normal ongoing physiological functions.

The largest single digestive organ is our small intestine which carries out most of our digestive processes, absorbing into our bloodstream almost all of the nutrients from our food. The small intestine, contrary to its anatomical name, is an average 23 feet/7 meters long [~4 times longer than the human body!] and it has an undulating 'brush border' internal surface which greatly increases its average overall absorptive internal surface area for taking in food to ~250 square meters/~2,700 square feet, the staggering equivalent of the total surface area of a doubles-sized tennis court!
The large intestine, also called the colon, which follows, is, by comparison, only 5 feet/1.5 meters in length with simply a smooth internal surface which absorbs water from the remaining unwanted food materials that the body will later eliminate. The small intestine is called ‘small’ because its internal width is only ~ 1 inch while the large intestine’s width is ~ 3 inches giving us this paradoxical large and small naming confusion which is oddly based on measurements of the width rather than the obvious great difference in the lengths of these two very important hollow digestive organs.

Finally, again for comparison, the human esophagus [from the Greek oisophagos, which means ‘to carry to eat’] is a collapsed only 10inch /25cm long fibromuscular tube which dilates around food materials as it transports them downward to the stomach with the muscular action of swallowing. And the stomach, which is ~12 inches/~30 cm long and 6 inches/~15cm wide, is also a hollow organ but one that will greatly expand from an empty volume of ~ 50 milliliters/~ a 2oz shot glass to a full dilated volume of ~ 1 to even 2 liters or approximately one quart or more.

Next, we’ll discuss the digestive enzymes and acid production that actually break all of our food down for absorption because understanding how all this works helps us understand what is actually going wrong when we become ill and, also, how to fix it all using safe natural medicines that do no harm.

Sharing by reproduction above in whole or in part constitutes copyright violation.
Copyright © 2015 by Canadian Intellectual Property Office [CIPO]
Dr.R.Putnam, ND
All rights Reserved
Dr. Richard Putnam BA, DC, ND
Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine
[Ontario Reg. #564]
1478 Unity Road, Unit 5, Box 36
Glenburnie, ON, Canada, K0H 1S0

No comments:

Post a Comment