di·ges·tion | \dī-ˈjes-chən, də-, -ˈjesh-\

Definition of digestion 

: the action, process, or power of digesting: such as

a : the process of making food absorbable by mechanically and enzymatically breaking it down into simpler chemical compounds in the digestive tract

b : the process in sewage treatment by which organic matter in sludge is decomposed by anaerobic bacteria with the release of a burnable mixture of gases

Examples of digestion in a Sentence

an enzyme that aids in the digestion of protein She began to suffer from poor digestion as she grew older.

Recent Examples on the Web

In addition to aiding digestion, dietary fiber has been shown to help cut cholesterol levels, protect against diabetes, tame inflammation and control weight. Consumer Reports, Washington Post, "That juice may be green, but it’s not as healthy as you think," 25 June 2018 For humans and our mammalian relatives, farts are mainly the result of digestion. Brian Resnick, Vox, "Farts: which animals do, which don’t, and why," 3 Apr. 2018 James Pimm, a farmer's son who owned an oyster bar in 19th-century London, created it and offered his guests the secret mix of gin, quinine, and a spice blend as a tonic to aid digestion. Sam Dangremond, Town & Country, "How To Make A Pimm's Cup," 2 June 2017 For instance, drinking lemon and water to stimulate the gastric juices for better digestion or apple cider vinegar in water has been touted for everything from weight loss to detoxification effects. Marci Robin, Allure, "Woman Claims Drinking Her Dog's Urine Cleared Her Acne in Nauseating Viral Video," 11 June 2018 The dash of umeboshi vinegar — a tart, fermented plum vinegar sold in Japanese markets — adds subtle umami and stimulates digestion. Julia Sherman, New York Times, "A Cookbook of Artists’ Creative Summer Desserts," 22 June 2018 The activities demonstrated which fruits and vegetables boost metabolism, are good for digestion, and are best for controlling blood sugar. Emily Himes, miamiherald, "Diabetic children learn about nutrition and keeping healthy at Camp Roaring Sun," 10 July 2018 Their benefits include providing energy, aiding in digestion, and helping prevent chronic disease. Jackie Pilossoph, chicagotribune.com, "15 material and nonmaterial self-confidence boosters," 20 June 2018 According to the Mayo Clinic, the condition is an inflammation of the gland that produces enzymes that help digestion and hormones that regulate the way your body processes sugar. Gil Kaufman, Billboard, "Avicii Suffered From Pancreatitis -- What is It?," 24 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'digestion.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of digestion

14th century, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

2 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for digestion

The first known use of digestion was in the 14th century

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More Definitions for digestion



English Language Learners Definition of digestion

: the process by which food is changed to a simpler form after it is eaten


di·ges·tion | \dī-ˈjes-chən, də-\

Kids Definition of digestion

: the body's process or power of changing food into simpler forms that can be taken up and used


di·ges·tion | \dī-ˈjes(h)-chən, də- \

Medical Definition of digestion 

: the action, process, or power of digesting especially : the process of making food absorbable by mechanically and enzymatically breaking it down into simpler chemical compounds in the digestive tract

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