How does the body digest fatty foods?

Although often labeled poorly, fat actually plays an important role in energy so that the body can carry out its functions properly. Fat also helps your body in the process of absorption of important vitamins and produces essential fatty acids in the body to control inflammation, improve brain health, and so on. But indeed, the process of digesting fatty foods by the body is a bit more complicated than other food sources. Apparently, that’s the way the body digests fatty foods

Follow the process of digesting body fat from start to finish.

1. Mouth

The digestion process starts as soon as you put food in your mouth. During chewing, teeth break down food into small pieces while the lipase enzyme from saliva intervenes to destroy the texture so that later, food is easier to swallow.

2. Esophagus (esophagus)

Foods that have been destroyed will then circulate in the esophagus. This flow occurs because peristalsis occurs in the esophagus, forcing the throat muscles to move continuously to push food into the stomach.

3. Stomach

In the stomach, the abdominal wall muscles act as a blender to mix all the food you just swallowed with the one you previously ate.

In addition, your stomach lining will naturally produce acids and enzymes to break down food chemically. This is done so that fat can be broken down into parts that are much smoother and directly digested in the small intestine.

4. Small intestine

The process of digesting fat actually happens once the food you consume is in the small intestine. Fat cannot dissolve in water, so the process of emulsification (mixing) of fat is very necessary.

At the top of the small intestine, specifically the duodenum, the process of emulsifying fat continues mechanically using bile acids produced from the gallbladder. Bile acid is a substance that can emulsify fat and change its size to one hundred times smaller than normal size.

At the same time, the pancreas, a small organ located below the stomach, produces a lipase enzyme that emulsifies the hydrolysis of fat into glycerol and fatty acids. Both compounds will react with bile salts to produce smaller fat molecules called mikel.

After the fat molecules are converted to mikel, the lipase enzyme acts again to break down the fat molecules into fatty acids and monoglycerides, which then pass through the small intestine. After passing through the small intestine, fatty acids are converted to triglycerides, which combine with cholesterol, phospholipids, and proteins to form new structures called chylomicrons.

The chylomicron protein layer makes this molecule soluble in water. As a result, fat can be directly channeled through lymphatics and blood flow to various body tissues that need it.

When chylomicrons move in the blood, they direct triglycerides to adipose tissue. About 20% of triglycerides are then sent to the liver to be broken down and absorbed by liver cells or used to produce energy. All of your cells can use fatty acids as energy, except for those in the brain, red blood cells and eyes.

5. Large intestine and anus

The remaining fat that cannot be absorbed by the body will then enter the large intestine which will be removed from the body by the anus in the form of feces. This is called defecation.

How long does the body digest fat?
Basically, everyone has a digestive system and answers for different foods. This makes everyone digest fatty foods at different times.

Many factors affect the length of absorption of fatty foods by the body. Some of them, such as psychological conditions, gender, the type of food you consume is consumed.

Foods that are rich in protein and fat, such as meat and fish, take longer to digest than fiber-rich foods such as fruits and vegetables. While sweets, like sweets, cakes, and cakes, are examples of fast food.

In general, the body needs about 24 to 72 hours to fully digest fatty foods. According to research conducted by the Mayo Clinic, the average duration of a man’s digestive process is around 33 hours and a woman is about 47 hours.