What is Gastrointestinal Tract and its function | How to keep Gastrointestinal Tract healthy

All about Gastrointestinal Tract

Gastrointestinal Tract
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The gastrointestinal tract is also known as the digestive tract or GI tract or alimentary tract. The digestive system of the human body is made up of the Gastrointestinal tract, liver, pancreas, and gallbladder. The GI tract is one of the important parts of the digestive system. The organs of a human body from which food and liquid travel when they are swallowed, digested, absorbed, and leave the body as human waste. The organs which are called the GI tract are the mouth, esophagus,  pharynx (throat), small intestine, large intestine, stomach, anus, and rectum.

How is the gastrointestinal tract look? This tube-like structure runs from the mouth to the anus and is hollow all the way through. The main functions of the GI tract are to digest food, absorb nutrients, and excrete waste products from the digestion process.

The gastrointestinal tract is further divided into the Upper GI tract and lower GI tract. The upper GI tract consists of the mouth, esophagus, pharynx (throat), stomach, and first part of the small intestine. The lower GI tract consists of the lower part of the small intestine, large intestine, anus, and rectum. The total length of the whole GI tract is nine meters. Gut microbiota present in the GI tract helps in maintaining metabolism and immune health. Gut microbiota contains around 4000 different strains of bacteria.

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Gastrointestinal Tract Diseases

Many diseases can affect the GI tract such as inflammation, infection, and cancer. Various bacteria which can cause foodborne illnesses can result in gastroenteritis. Gastroenteritis is the most common disease of the gastrointestinal tract. Gastrointestinal cancer growth might happen anytime in the gastrointestinal tract and incorporates mouth cancer, stomach cancer, esophageal cancer, tongue cancer, and colorectal cancer.

Inflammatory conditions like Ileitis and colitis can affect the GI tract. Inflammation of the ileum is called Ileitis and inflammation of the large intestine is called colitis. Appendicitis is the medical term for appendix inflammation.

Diverticular diseases like diverticulitis, Inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis, and Functional gastrointestinal disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome, functional constipation, and chronic functional abdominal pain are few examples of GI tract diseases.

How to keep Gastrointestinal Tract healthy

Get plenty of water

Drinking a lot of water is great for your stomach-related well-being, as per Adams. Fiber pulls water into the colon to make softer, bulkier stools, permitting them to effortlessly go through more. The most frequent reason for bowel inactivity is not drinking enough fluids. Specialists suggest drinking 50-66 ounces (1.5-2 liters) of non-stimulated liquids each day to prevent constipation. But if you are staying in a warm climatic region then you need to drink more water. There is one more method that helps in meeting fluid intake which is by adding fruits and vegetables having high water content, for example, cucumber.

Get plenty of fiber

Consuming a high-fiber diet will improve your digestion process. You must include fiber-rich foods like fruits, grains, legumes, and vegetables in your daily diet. A high-fiber diet assists with keeping food traveling through your intestinal system, making you less likely to get constipated. High fiber diet can likewise help you prevent or treat different digestive conditions, like diverticulosis, irritable bowel disorder (IBS), and hemorrhoids. What’s more, it can help you accomplish or keep a healthy weight. Bananas contain a good amount of fiber. Therefore eat at least one banana daily.

Avoid bad fats and Add healthy fats

Fatty foods will slow down the digestion process, which can result in constipation. you cannot completely avoid fats from your diet. Because good fats are necessary for the body. So combine good fats with fiber, which will improve your digestion process. Moreover, studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids might decrease your risk of developing inflammatory bowel diseases like ulcerative colitis. You must include food high in omega-3 fatty acids like flaxseeds, chia seeds, nuts, and also fatty fish like salmon, sardines, and mackerel.

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