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Mastication

mechanical procedure for crushing the food and its first enzymatic splitting
A monkey chewing plant matter - masticating - so it is easier to digest

Mastication is the starting process of the digestive system. It is when the teeth chew the food and the tongue mixes it with saliva to make it mushy in the mouth. A group of animals, called the ruminants, masticate more than once. Most cattle are in this group.