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Digestive System
The Large Intestine (Grades 5-6)



The Large Intestine (Grades 5-6)
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 6
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.01

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    ileocaecal, sphincter, excess, valve, anus, diarrhea, intestinal, esophagus, colon, opposite, tract, material, digestion, absorb, feces, intestine


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The Large Intestine
By Jennifer Kenny
  

1     Digestion starts in the mouth. It then continues through the esophagus, stomach, and small intestine. Anything that hasn't already been sent to the cells in our body heads to the large intestine through the valve called the ileocaecal sphincter.
 
2     The large intestine is a tube of muscles and tissue that is around five feet long in adults. It is shorter than the small intestine, but wider than the small intestine. The large intestine has two main parts the colon and the rectum.
 
3     Parts of food, which can't be used, go to the large intestine. Fiber from fruits, vegetables, and grains can't be digested. Bacteria break down any digested food that gets here. They then make several vitamins including vitamin K, which the body needs for clotting. The large intestine removes water, vitamins, and minerals from this undigested food and fiber. Did you know that the large intestine could absorb about 1.6 gallons of water a day? The water and mineral salts pass through intestinal walls where blood capillaries carry them away to be used by your body.

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