The digestive system

Digestive phenomena

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What is a digestive event?


A digestive event is an event related to normal digestive function. Everyone has experienced digestion-related inconveniences, for example when food goes down the wrong way, or when we get hiccups or have a stomach ache. These inconveniences are not signs of trouble in the digestive tract.

These digestive events must not be confused with eating disorders such as bulimia or anorexia. Eating disorders are considered diseases, whereas digestive events may well be unpleasant, but they do not have serious consequences.


Several things can trigger digestive events. Firstly, they are often related to an unbalanced diet, for example too much fat, too much spicy food or not enough dietary fibre. Lifestyle can also play a role. For example, irregular meals, eating too quickly or even stress. Food poisoning can also sometimes cause digestive events, as can food intolerance. You may know people who cannot tolerate gluten or lactose for example. Then there are certain kinds of medication, such as anti-inflammatories, that can cause heartburn.

You will learn about some of these digestive events, but I am sure you already know some of them, or at least you know them in everyday language. Eructation, for example, simply corresponds to burping, and borborygmus to rumbling noises in the stomach.

Once again, these events are related to the normal function of the digestive tract. Burping and passing wind are normal consequences of digestion and affect all of us.

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