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What happens to the food when it reaches the stomach?
The human digestive system comprises a group of organs that digest and convert food into energy for the body. The digestive system is made up of the gastrointestinal tract, also known as the alimentary canal, which includes the mouth, stomach, esophagus, small intestine, and large intestine.
The accessory organs of the digestive system are the salivary glands, liver, pancreas, and gallbladder. The food particles gradually get digested as they travel through various compartments of the alimentary canal. Accessory organs stimulate digestion by releasing certain enzymes that help in breaking down the food.
Gastric juice is produced by the gastric gland, which is located in the stomach wall.
Three chemicals are present in the stomach juice. These include mucus, pepsin, and hydrochloric acid.
(a) Hydrochloric acid makes gastric juice acidic so that the digestive enzyme pepsin can break down proteins. It also destroys any germs that may have come into contact with food and entered the stomach.
(b) Pepsin breaks down the proteins in food to create smaller molecules.
(c) Mucus helps shield the inner layer of the stomach from its own hydrochloric acid emissions.]
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