|Topics||Kidneys & Bladder, Large Intestine, Liver, Pancreas, Small Intestine|
Chemical waste like excess water, minerals, and salt are filtered from the blood by the kidneys and secreted into the urine. Urine is transported from the kidneys to the bladder through ureters.
The large intestine (colon) follows the small intestine and processes the physical waste produced by digestion, absorbing water and minerials that remain back into the body. Solid waste is then stored in the rectum while liquid waste is stored in the bladder.
The liver produces bile which emulsifies (separates) fat.
The acids produced by the pancreas contain several enzymes that aid in digestion. Lipase converts fat to glycerol and fatty acids. Pancreatic amylase breaks down complex carbohydrates into simple sugars. Trypsin converts polypeptides (the building blocks of protein) into amino acids.
The small intestine is where most digestion takes place. As food travels along the small intestine it gets broken down completely by enzymes secreted from the walls. These enzymes are produced in the small intestine as well as in the pancreas and liver. After the enzymes break down the food, the resulting substances are then absorbed into the blood via capillaries in the small intestine walls.