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How Does Eating Work?

Bowl of blueberries

Bowl of blueberries

Eating is the process of breaking down food into molecules that are small enough to be absorbed into the blood stream.

This means a journey of 9 metres (30foot) through a series of organs known collectively as the gut or the intestinal tract.

Food begins as a meal and ends up with us taking trips to the toilet. Between these stages food has done its job, released its nutrients in a 4 stage process incorporating the mouth, the stomach, the small intestine and the large intestine.

The liver and the pancreas also play a roll as do many hormones that one use to break down the food to release the nutrients.

It takes 48 hours for food to pass through the body. We eat when we are hungry and stop when we feel full. However we are not always responsible for these feelings.

When we are low in nutrients the hormone Ghrelin is released by the stomach, this sends a signal to the brain, which tells us we are hungry. And when we are full the hormone leptin is released by our fat tissues, inhibiting our appetites.

So as you can see eating sugary foods such as fast foods, bread, pasta, rice too often send a conflicting message as these foods do not contain the nutrients we need for susvival. And so we appear hungry a lot more often.

We should strive to eat once or twice really well during the day and avoid snacking. And with a healthy nervous system, your proper intake of food is going to work better. So make sure you get adjusted regularly.

John Keane

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