How your dog’s digestive system works
Consuming too many rich and indulgent foods and compromising our digestive health by flooding our bodies with large amounts of fat and sugar is so 2011. Here are some tips to help keep your digestive flow on track this year: 1 Incorporate healthy bacteria in your diet Factors such as stress, lack of sleep, antibiotics, illness, aging and poor diet choices can often lead to an imbalance of your digestive tract bacteria. Certain probiotics, mostly found in dairy products and some fortified cereals, can help to maintain the balance of “good” bacteria in the digestive tract. Try a daily helping of yogurt with probiotics, such as Activia. 2 Keep the fiber on deck Consistently eating the right amount of fiber can help promote bowel function. High-fiber foods such as fruit, vegetables and whole grains also help you feel full, which can help lower your chance of overeating throughout the day.
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You need guts to be happy no matter what: The importance of a healthy digestive system for enhanced immunity
Research suggests that the gut micro-flora lining the intestines are much more than just “good” or “bad” bacteria, and that their most important function is to regulate the body’s immune response, especially when faced with stress. This is a two-way street: Psychology and psycho-social factors influence the physiological functioning of the gut, and a healthy strong gut can help one stay mentally agile and fit. A recent scientific study in Nutrition in Clinical Practice shows that the micro organism or gut flora living in the human intestines form a network of natural controls that regulate mood, appetite, body weight, nutrient absorption, stress and immune response. No surprise then that the human digestive tract is home to 70 percent of the immune system. Simply put, our every-day food can help or harm our mind-body health. Another example that proves the brain-gut connection is when we think of food and the appetite is stimulated. Similarly, a gut in distress can cause stress and mental depression.
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When your mature dog’s digestive system is functioning smoothly, the typical meal takes 7- to 10-hours to pass through the digestive system. In puppies, this happens much faster, typically it will be 30-45 minutes before they need to poop. This timeframe will extend as the dog moves through adolescence into adulthood. When feeding pets, each meal fed is not required to be complete and balanced. What is required is that the over-all diet is complete and balanced. In an evolutionary setting, nutritional balance has always been achieved over time.
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Here it is mixed with gastric juices. The stomach is a muscular bag and it churns the food to help break it down mechanically as well as chemically. The food is then squeezed through a second sphincter into the first part of the small intestine, called the duodenum. The small intestine Once in the duodenum, the food is mixed with more digestive enzymes from the pancreas and bile from the liver. Food is then squeezed into the lower parts of the small intestine, called the jejunum and the ileum. Nutrients are absorbed from the ileum, which is lined with millions of finger-like projections called villi. Each villus is connected to a mesh of capillaries.
For the original version including any supplementary images or video, visit http://betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/digestive%20system