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What is the role of the pancreas in digestion?

The role of the pancreas in digestion is to make enzymes that are needed to help break down food. Enzymes are stored in the pancreas until a person has a meal. The pancreas has an opening that is normally covered in a thin and watery mucus. The enzymes flow easily through this opening into the small intestine where they're needed to help digestion. The pancreas is located near the small intestine.

The pancreas contains exocrine glands that produce enzymes important to digestion. When food enters the stomach, these pancreatic juices are released into a system of ducts that culminate in the main pancreatic duct. The pancreatic juices and bile that are released into the duodenum help the body to digest fats, carbohydrates, and proteins.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.