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  • Question 1/9

    Stretched out, your small intestine is:

  • Answer 1/9

    Stretched out, your small intestine is:

    • You answered:
    • Correct Answer:

    It’s called small, but it really isn’t. Together, the three sections of your small intestine are about the height of an adult giraffe.

  • Question 1/9

    Trillions of tiny organisms live inside your large intestine.

  • Answer 1/9

    Trillions of tiny organisms live inside your large intestine.

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    • Correct Answer:

    They’re bacteria. And the only time you’re free of them is when you’re inside your mother’s womb. You need them to help break down food and fight off illness.

  • Question 1/9

    Along with digestion, your intestines help with:

  • Answer 1/9

    Along with digestion, your intestines help with:

    • You answered:
    • Correct Answer:

    Working together with your liver, pancreas, and bloodstream, your intestines help your body absorb vitamins, stay hydrated, and get rid of waste. All in a day’s work.

  • Question 1/9

    From mouth to flush, how long does it take to digest a meal?

  • Answer 1/9

    From mouth to flush, how long does it take to digest a meal?

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    • Correct Answer:

    Your body needs time to chew food, break it down with acids and enzymes, collect and send the vitamins and minerals around your body, and prepare what remains for the final exit. The exact time depends on many things, including what and how much you ate.

  • Question 1/9

    Digestion takes place mostly in the:

  • Answer 1/9

    Digestion takes place mostly in the:

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    • Correct Answer:

    Your stomach is at the center of your digestive system. It uses acids to help break down food. But the bulk of the action happens in your small intestine. It’s where the vitamins you take in are processed so they can nourish your body.

  • Answer 1/9

    What happens when you swallow gum?

    • You answered:
    • Correct Answer:

    No matter what Mom said, gum doesn’t stay inside you for 7 years. It moves pretty quickly through your intestines and makes an exit in your stool. If you swallow too much, it is possible to “gum up” the works and have a blockage. That’s why kids shouldn’t chew gum until they know not to swallow it.

  • Question 1/9

    To keep your colon healthy, you should get regular cleanses.

  • Answer 1/9

    To keep your colon healthy, you should get regular cleanses.

    • You answered:
    • Correct Answer:

    Your colon cleans itself. But you can help move things along by drinking plenty of water and eating fiber-rich foods. Before a colonoscopy, you’ll do a cleansing so doctors can better see inside your colon. But that should be the only time you need one.

  • Question 1/9

    If you have celiac disease, your body can’t handle:

  • Answer 1/9

    If you have celiac disease, your body can’t handle:

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    • Correct Answer:

    Celiac disease damages the tissue of the small intestine and keeps it from absorbing vitamins. People with this condition can’t tolerate gluten, a protein in wheat, barley, rye, and possibly oats. Symptoms can include abdominal pain, bloating, weight gain or loss, trouble sleeping, and fatigue.

  • Question 1/9

    People with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) probably should avoid:

  • Answer 1/9

    People with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) probably should avoid:

    • You answered:
    • Correct Answer:

    Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts are all cruciferous vegetables, named for the cross-like patterns on their leaves. While they pack lots of vitamins and beta-carotene, they can cause gas and bloating. And if you have IBS, these are problems you already have.

    Spinach, zucchini, squash, and sweet potatoes also have the nutritional goods and are easier on the gut.

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    Great! You have the inside track on your digestive system.

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    Your “gut” instincts are pretty good.

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    Don’t just trust your gut, digest some new facts.

Sources | Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, MS, DO on May 17, 2016 Medically Reviewed on May 17, 2016

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini, MS, DO on
May 17, 2016

IMAGE PROVIDED BY:

1) Getty Images

 

SOURCES:

Celiac Support Association: “Celiac Disease Facts,” "The Scoop on Oats."

Cleveland Clinic: “Best and Worst Foods for IBS.”

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh: “What Is the Large Intestine?”

Mayo Clinic: “Digestion: How long does it take?”

Colorado State University: "Fundamental Physiology and Anatomy of the Digestive System," "Gastrointestinal Transit: How Long Does It Take?"

Columbia University: "Food's travels through the body."

LiveScience: “Does Your Colon Need Cleaning? 5 Things You Should Know,” “11 Surprising Facts About the Digestive System.”

Mayo Clinic: “Irritable bowel syndrome,” “Swallowing gum: Is it harmful?”

Medical University of South Carolina: "Small Intestine."

National Geographic: “Giraffe.”

Canadian Cancer Society: “First Facts.”

National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: "Celiac Disease," “Definition and Facts for Irritable Bowel Syndrome.”

Sciencelearn.org: “Healthy Gut Bacteria.”

National Institutes of Health: “Your Microbes and You.”

Quigley, E. Gastroenterology and Hepatology , September 2013.

This tool does not provide medical advice.
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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.