The digestion, absorption, transportation, and cellular metabolism of fats follow yet a third set of chemical and biological pathways in the body. However, they intersect the pathways of carbohydrates and proteins at several points. The following sections briefly describe the general fate of fats in the body.

Digestion, Absorption, and Transportation

Ingested fat meets its first significant digestive enzyme in the duodenum, where the exocrine gland of the pancreas provides the most important lipase (Table 1 and Fig. 19). The lipases in the saliva, stomach, and small intestine have only a small effect on fat digestion, as shown by the tremendous reduction in fat digestion when the pancreas is disabled. When the exocrine gland of the pancreas is not working properly, undigested and unabsorbed fat causes steatorrhea (bulky, clay-colored, fatty stools). The combined detergent actions of bile salts (from the gallbladder),

(a) Creatine synthesis

Glycine + amidine group from arginine


Glycocyamine (guanidoacetic acid)


Methyl group from methionine or choline


(b) Phosphocreatine metabolism

ATP + Creatine . Skeletal muscle . ^p + phosphocreatine + H20

Phosphocreatine + H20 -

(c) Creatinine formation Physiological medium Phosphocreatine

Spontaneous, nonenzymatic


Laboratory conditions Creatine =




Figure 18. Metabolism of creatine and creati-

Digestive system

Mouth Stomach

Small intestine

Food fat


Products of digestion

The Mediterranean Diet Meltdown

The Mediterranean Diet Meltdown

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