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02-04-21

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The intestine represents the terminal portion of the digestive tract, which is located between the stomach and the anus. The main function of this organ is to absorb the nutrients and water that are ingested during feeding.
The intestine is divided into two parts
Before knowing how the functioning or well-being of the intestine influences the state of health of the entire organism, it is important to know a little about this organ.
Small intestine:
It is a very long tubular organ that originates from the stomach and ends in the ileo-caecal valve, which is a valve that communicates with the colon or large intestine.
It is divided into three portions at the same time, the duodenum, jejunum and ilium, and its main function is to carry out the absorption of the nutrients present in the food bolus.
Large intestine:
Also known as the colon, like the small intestine, it is a tubular organ made up of smooth muscles but much shorter than the one previously described. It is approximately 1 to 1.5 meters long and extends from the ileo-caecal valve to the rectum.
Its main function is to reabsorb the water present in food, to be able to form feces, which, thanks to movements carried out by this organ involuntarily (peristaltic movements), are expelled during defecation.
In addition, in the colon there is a large number of bacteria, which make up the intestinal flora, these bacteria are responsible for protecting against infection by foreign agents, allow proper digestion, help with the correct absorption of calcium, magnesium and iron, reinforce and stimulate the immune system, synthesize vitamin K and B complex vitamins.
Intestinal disorders
Alterations in the intestine and their manifestations in the body
There are various diseases of the intestine, such as inflammatory bowel disease that does not comprise a single pathology but refers to all disorders that involve chronic inflammation of the digestive tract.
Some of the diseases that cause this type of inflammation are Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis, the main symptoms of which are diarrhea, abdominal pain, weight loss and fatigue.
Systemic consequences
It is important for the intestine to carry out its functions properly so that the whole organism functions properly, since as we could see, the tasks performed by this organ are closely related to the functioning of the other parts of the body.
For this reason, the systemic alterations as a result of a diseased intestine make up a wide list, which on some occasions can be confused with diseases of another nature, ignoring that the problem actually arises from alterations in this organ.
Manifestations of a diseased intestine
These are some of the ways in which a diseased intestine can manifest itself at a systemic level:
Dermatological diseases
It originates from having modifications in the balance of the intestinal bacterial flora, which in some cases can cause some difficulty in the digestion of some food particles causing inflammatory responses that are evident in the skin, such as rashes, eczema, acne, etc.
Anxiety and depression
The intestines are the second most associated organ in the body with depression and anxiety after the brain.
Different studies have discovered that the intestine produces a large amount of the serotonin necessary for the body to maintain a healthy mood, so an imbalance in this could represent the appearance of psychological problems such as depression and anxiety.
General gastrointestinal problems
In general, the signs and symptoms at the gastrointestinal level that could occur are diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal distention, constipation, intestinal obstruction, intestinal malabsorption that in turn will lead to weight loss , bleeding that could be the cause of the appearance of anemia.
Bad breath or halitosis
Certain diseases that cause an imbalance in the intestinal flora that at the same time could cause gastric alterations and in turn produce bad breath in the patient.
Allergy and intolerance to certain foods
For example, lactose or gluten intolerance. In these cases the intestine does not have the capacity to carry out the digestion of this type of food, which is why the immune system detects them as antigen or foreign particle that is trying to invade the body, for which it decides to attack it, causing gastrointestinal or systemic symptoms.
Vitamin K and Vitamin B deficiency
Due to the fact that some of the bacteria present in the intestinal microbiota are capable of producing these two compounds, an alteration in the bacterial flora would mean a deficit in the production of these two compounds, bringing consequences such as anemia, problems with coagulation, etc.
Iron absorption deficit
Iron is absorbed in the duodenum and jejunum, that is, the first two portions of the small intestine; and this contributes to the formation of hemoglobin.
As there are alterations that do not allow adequate absorption of nutrients in this portion of the intestine, the amounts of iron will not be adequate and iron deficiency or iron deficiency anemia could be evidenced.


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