Asked Jul 9, 2019

Describe how a starch, polypeptide, and triglyceride molecule will be broken down as it pass through the digestive system.


Expert Answer

Step 1

The process of digestion involves the interaction of the food ingested with various juices, hormones and enzymes in the body. It begins in the mouth or the oral cavity. The food, as it passes through the digestive system, is broken down into smaller molecules which aid in their absorption. Finally, the waste generated is rejected from the body in the form of stool.

Step 2

When starch is ingested, it first comes in contact with the enzymes in the oral cavity, particularly salivary amylase, which breaks it down into smaller oligosaccharides. This material moves through the esophagus and reaches the stomach. Here, it comes in contact with pancreatic amylase which breaks the oligosaccharides down to the monomeric level. There is also release of enzymes like insulin and glucagon from the pancreas which keep the overall level of glucose in the body in check. Once the digested material reaches the small intestine, the monomers get absorbed by the epithelial cells through transporter proteins present on their surface.

Step 3

In case of proteins, digestion begins in the stomach. There is an enzyme called pepsin, which breaks down the protein molecules and converts them into polypeptides. These polypeptides move into the small intestine, where enzyme...

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