10 facts about the human body that will change how you see yourself!!Are you familiar with the human body? We all have one and we tend to put it through its paces. We know the basic biology factors, but do you remember the finer details of your last biology class? Here are some shocking facts about your body, that your teacher never told you.
1. The average adult heart pumps 1,900 gallons (7,200 Liters) of blood per day.
Your heart is working constantly, starting around 4 weeks after conception, and never rests. It even has its own electrical impulse, the sinus node, so it will keep beating outside the body. Did you know, that the energy created by your heart within a day would be enough to drive a truck for 20 miles? The hearts of women are, on average, 2 ounces lighter than the hearts of men. The difference in size also accounts for the faster heartbeat in women.
When people are in love their heartrate spikes just at the sight or thought of their beloved. Happy couples experience another remarkable effect: Their heartbeat and breathing synchronizes after gazing into each other’s eyes for just three minutes! It’s not just a lover who can affect your heartbeat, music can also do the trick. The rhythm of your heart changes when you are listening to music, coming close to mimicking the beat.
2. Per year, you shed about 1,5 pounds of skin.
The human skin renews its outer layer every 28 days. To do that, your skin sheds over 30,000 dead cells, per minute! The thinnest skin is fond on your eyelids, it’s only 0.02 mm thick, the thickest skin is on your feet (1.4 mm).
Human skin color is determined by a protein called melanin. The large tentacle-shaped cells that produce and distribute melanin in the body are called melanocytes. About 7% of skin cells in the body are melanocytes. Every human has the same exact number of melanocytes, what determines skin color is their activity, not quantity. There is one exception to this though, the only people who have a different number of melanocytes are those with albinism. This condition results from a lack of melanocytes and affects about 1 in 110,000 people in the world.
There are two different types of melanin; pheomelanin, which is yellow to red in color; and eumelanin which is dark brown to black. Melanin is also the protein that is responsible for your eye color. After birth, it takes six months for babies to develop their permanent skin color.
3. Your tongue print is as unique as a finger print.
The taste buds on your tongue are constantly being replaced, around every 10 days to be more specific. Apart from being responsible for your sense of taste, the tongue is also very important for chewing food, swallowing and kissing. It is a muscular hydrostat, a fancy scientific name for the only muscle in your body, that is not supported by your skeleton.
Who remembers the tongue chart in biology class with clearly divided areas for sweet, salty, sour, and bitter? This clear division of labor has been disproved. Every taste bud has between 50 and 100 taste sensing cells. The individual cells are responsible for identifying certain chemicals, which should tell us the nutritional composition of our food. Umami is new to the mix, as for a long time it was considered to be a mix of the other four flavors. A Japanese scientist found that some cells can detect monosodium glutamate. We perceive that amino acid as savory and rich. This is also why monosodium glutamate is frequently used as a taste enhancer.
Spiciness or the hotness of food on the other hand is not chemically detected by taste buds. The burning sensation occurs when or heat and pain receptors are being triggered. That’s also why you can detect hotness with every patch of your skin but won’t know if something is salty until you taste it.
4. The tiny hairs in your nose can “taste” bitter flavors.
Your nose can remember up to 50,000 different smells! Although neither men nor women can actually be attributed to having a better sense of smell than the other, women have been found to be more adept at learning to detect a scent. Women of childbearing age were shown to have a higher ability to pick up familiar odors, even at extremely low levels. After a month of exposure to a specific aroma, women then were discovered to have the ability to correctly pick out that specific scent at 1/1,000th of the original concentration. This special power has been linked the hormones in the female body during that time in a woman’s life. It has also been found that women are able to identify when a person, their partner in particular, is stressed out just by smelling their shirt!
Did you know, that scents are processed directly in the limbic system? Unlike sounds or visual cues, which we are detecting consciously, scents are directly processed in our subconsciousness. So when you start to notice a smell, your brain has processed it already on a deeper level. For that reason, senses are the most powerful tool for triggering emotions and memories.
5. The human body has enough iron in it to make a 3-inch-long metal nail.
Human babies are born with 270 bones in their body. The number decreases to 206 by adulthood. Although 1 in 200 humans will have 208 bones, as that is how often people are born with an extra pair of ribs. Our hands and feet contain more than half of the body’s total number of bones. Each hand contains 27 bones and each foot has a total of 26. Together the four components total 106 bones. Ounce for ounce, our bones are stronger than steel! They are not, however, the hardest substances in the body. Tooth enamel is. Tooth enamel protects the crown of teeth and has its high concentration of minerals to thanks for the extra strength. Human bones are also composed of 31% water.
All of our bones are connected to at least one other, with one exception. The hyoid bone in the throat does not connect to any other bones. That doesn’t make it any weaker though. The most fragile bone in the body though are the toe bones and the most commonly broken one is the ankle.
The smallest bones in your body, the ossicles, can be found in your ear. Together the hammer, anvil, and stir-up (or more scientifically: the malleus, incus, and stapes) are responsible for your hearing. The whole system could easily fit on a penny. The smallest of the bunch measures roughly 3 x 2.5mm.
6. Red blood cells outnumber all other cells in your body by a ratio of 8:1
An average human has about 24.9 trillion small red blood cells, around 1.4 trillion platelets. Fat and Muscle cells don’t even show up on that scale, yet combined, they are responsible for more than half of your weight. By the way the combined weight of all the bacteria in your body adds around 4 pounds to your weight.
The myth, that you have more bacteria in your body than human cells persists since the 1970s and may be factually wrong. New research estimates that the average ratio is closer to 1.3 to 1, but still in favor for the bacteria. However, since the absolutely overwhelming amount of bacteria is in your gut, at this ratio, the balance could be equaled by just one good toilet sitting. Although this is only true if you count the red blood cells, otherwise the 10:1 ratio still stands.
Before you freak out and scrub yourself in disinfectant, you should know that these bacteria are actually vital for your survival. The gut bacteria are responsible for your digestion and without it you wouldn’t be able to break down food into useful components.
7. If measured like digital cameras, our eyes have a quality of 576 megapixels.
Our eyes can distinguish around 10 million different colors. Some women can even get a special genetic mutation that causes them to have the ability to see millions more colors than the average human being can. We also spend almost 10% of our waking hours with our eyes shut, due to blinking of course! Our eyes are also the only exterior part of our body that cannot get sun burnt.
Your eye color depends on the pigmentation of your iris. Brown and green eyes come from the specific concentration of melanin. Blue eyes, on the other hand don’t come from a blue colored iris. They actual have no color at all and just appear blue due to scattering, the same effect that is responsible for the blue color of the sky. All blue eyed people share the same ancestor, who lived near the black sea almost 10,000 years ago. The rarest eye color is green. By generous estimations only 2 % of all people have it.
8. Nerve impulses travel from the brain to your body at a speed of 200 mph.
Your brain has a lot of fat. And that’s a good thing, so don’t send it on a diet. The fat in your brain isn’t stored in fat cells. The lipids are forming a vital structure which surrounds your nerves and protects your brain. The fat molecules are the main building blocks of the special cells that are keeping your nerves from short cutting. And there is quite a lot of electricity being send around: Your brain produces so much electricity, that it could power a low voltage light bulb.
You are probably not aware of most of its activity. Apart from managing the basic functions of keeping you alive, your brain is also super-fast at processing the presented information. It’s capable of reading up to 1,000 words per minute! The most powerful supercomputer in the world, BlueGene, can only perform at a 0.002 % speed of the human brain. Our organ can perform up to 38 thousand-trillion operations per second.
9. Your stomach lining is renewed every three days, otherwise it would digest itself.
Hunger is counted as an internal sense. Apart from the senses sound, sight, touch, smell and taste, your body is equipped with 15 other senses. Take the feeling of being hot or cold for example. These sensors are located in your skin and completely unrelated to the sense of touch. Other internal senses give you the feeling of suffocation, thirst and fullness.
Your sense of balance is located in the inner ear. The vestibular system in the detects your spacial position and gives your brain a clue what to do to stay upright. Dislodged calcium carbonate crystals in your ear can lead to vertigo, because they are creating a false sense of your position.
10. If you were to lose your pinky finger, your hand would lose 50 % of its strength.
Your fingers don’t have any muscles. All the strength and movement comes from the muscles in your arms which are connected by tendons to your hand. Your fingers are extremely sensible. If you just place your finger on a structure, you can feel objects that are twice as wide as the human eyelash (around o.2 mm), but if you drag your fingers over a surface you can distinguish irregularities in the spectrum of nanometers! Figuratively speaking, if the fingertip were the size of the earth, you would be able to pick up the difference between a car and a house.
Your fingers aren’t only extremely sensitive; they are also capable of remarkably fine motor control. So the only limitation is actually eyesight. With a microscope, people are able to create intricate art on the tip of a pencil or sculptures that fit inside the eye of a needle.
By the way, all your muscles can do is pull. Muscles contract and thus are biologically not capable of pushing. When you push, it’s also due to a muscle contracting itself. The amount of muscle fibers in your body doesn’t change in your lifetime. When you exercise you change the shape and strength, but not the number.