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Discuss the role of hydrocholoric acid in protecting the body from disease.Explain signs and symptoms associated with low gastric acidity - Essay Example

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It not only plays a crucial role in digestion but also helps in the protection of the body against some organism that may cause disease. it is a powerful gastric secretion…
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Discuss the role of hydrocholoric acid in protecting the body from disease.Explain signs and symptoms associated with low gastric acidity
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Download file to see previous pages Moreover, chronic conditions such as asthma, allergies and gallstones have been implicated in the reduced acid secretion (Ahmed 34). Most common age related factors, that causes impaired digestion, is the decline in the hydrochloric acid production in the stomach. This thus shows that hydrochloric acid plays a crucial role in the gastrointestinal tract.
Digestion of food substances starts when food enters the mouth and progresses as the food is passed to the stomach, small and large intestines. When food reaches the stomach, gastric secretions are released which consist of; HCL, pepsinogen and a mucus layer that acts as a protective layer. The amount of HCL increases as digestion of food progresses. The ph of the stomach is maintained by HCL at 1 and 2.Apart from the digestion, the HCL helps in protection of the body against diseases (Barney 78).
HCL plays a vital role in the protection of the body from pathogens. It does so by maintaining a sterile environment in the stomach, this is through protection against pathogens that are ingested during food intake. Pathogens cannot achieve overgrowth in the small intestines due to the action of this acid hence the gastrointestinal tract remains free of pathogens. Research has also shown that a common pathogen in the stomach, E coli is inactivated in the stomach when acidity is high at 1.5to 4.Inactivation of this organism thus eliminates possible E coli infection (Forleo 125). Low acidity of the stomach leads to fast invasion of microorganisms from the colon and bacterial colonization and overgrowth of bacteria hence leading to infection. Thus, hydrochloric acid is vital in body defense.
Researchers have also found out that reduced levels of hydrochloric acid leads to infection by H. pylori which is one of the most common pathogen that cause chronic bacterial infection. It also causes gastritis, gastric carcinoma, gastric ulcers and B-cell gastric carcinoma. This acid also ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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