Book Chapter

Digestive System

John B Furness, Eve K Boyle, Josiane Fakhry, Joanna Gajewski, Linda J Fothergill

Oxford University Press | Published : 2019

Abstract

Digestive tracts vary considerably because animals have evolved different processes to convert foods to essential molecular building blocks. Differences in digestive strategies distinguish, for example, foregut and hindgut fermenters, and animals utilising different dominant food types, for example herbivores, carnivores, and folivores. Neither the modern human diet nor the size and proportions of the human gut resemble those of other primates. The human digestive system has evolved and diverged in response to introduction of new food types and food preparation techniques. For example, persistence of lactase activity into adulthood occurred in populations that maintained cattle to harvest mi..

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University of Melbourne Researchers