Digestion requires a complex series of actions involving several specialized enzymes working in unison. Pepsin is one of these enzymes. Each enzyme can destroy a specific type of bond between amino acids, and pepsin specializes in destroying peptide bonds. By doing this, the enzymes can cooperatively break down proteins that the small intestine can then absorb. This provides nutrients and energy necessary for the body to operate. This is also the first of the enzymes to activate whenever food needs digesting.
Without proper knowledge of the underlying mechanics and molecules, pepsin's role in digestion can seem complicated. Amino acids are special organic compounds that allow the body to perform many biological functions. Some allow the body to create collagen and others allow for the transportation of fats. Each amino acid belongs to a category: essential, conditionally essential, or nonessential. The body cannot produce essential amino acids, so we must obtain them through diet.
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