What makes bile?

Irina Vashchenko
Irina Vashchenko
1 March 2013
What makes bile?

Bile is a yellow-green or brown liquid, bitter in taste and having a specific odor. Bile is not produced in the gallbladder, as many people think, but is produced by liver cells, accumulates there and then, through the bile duct, part of it is sent to the gallbladder for storage, and the other part enters the duodenum to take part in the digestive process.

Brief historical background

In the Middle Ages, healers and alchemists knew about the presence of two types of bile in the human body - liver and gallbladder, but did not understand its purpose, although they guessed that it was very important for the normal functioning of the body. They developed a special humoral theory linking a person's temperament with the ratio of the four fundamental life juices circulating in the human body, to which blood, mucus (now called lymph), and yellow and black bile were attributed.

According to this teaching, the hypothetical predominance of light bile in the body made a person impudent, hysterical and quick-tempered, and the excess of black bile gave rise to sadness and spiritual longing. And although all these theories have remained in the distant past, and modern doctors are well aware of what bile is produced in the human body, it is still popularly called “bilious” among the people of the evil and sarcastic person, not the slightest relation.

Bile formation

Bile is produced by the cells of the liver and the small bile ducts in it. Then it enters the gallbladder, where it is stored until the moment when the duodenum is filled with food half-digested in the stomach and the body needs a large amount of bile for its further digestion. Thus, over a day, more than a liter of bile is continuously formed in an adult’s body, which is deposited in the gallbladder in order to be used at the right moment.

Bile Functions

  • Bile provides a change in gastric digestion by pepsin to intestinal, in which the enzymes produced by the pancreas play a leading role.
  • Bile contains in its composition bile acids, which emulsify fats that are in the digested food, and thus contribute to their early splitting, absorption and absorption.
  • The next thing that makes bile into the intestine is that it stimulates its motor function and speeds up peristalsis, as a result of which the absorption rate of nutrients increases.
  • Bile has a favorable bacteriostatic effect on the intestinal microflora and prevents the development of unwanted putrefactive processes in it.
  • The value of bile is great in the regulation of electrolyte and protein metabolism, the elimination of bilirubin and cholesterol from the body, which are not filtered by the kidneys and are removed from the body solely by its help.

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