10 Weird Facts About The Human Body

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The human body is an extremely fascinating machine. It is made up of many complex systems all with their own specific functions. Unfortunately, some humans have conditions that don’t function properly. This is part of the reason scientists have made a huge leap forward with discoveries. They find people with abnormal conditions and not only help control or correct their condition, but also discover new answers to previous questions along the way.  Of course, advancement in scientific technologies has also played a significant role.

The history of science has progressed and brought us many answers to some of the most complex questions. Some of the results from recent studies have left scientists completely shocked while having to dismiss their previous conclusions they thought were accurate.

Without a doubt, we still have a lot to learn about the complex human body. This is the exciting part about science.  After all, if we had all of the answers, we wouldn’t be striving for new discoveries and breakthroughs that can potentially change our world.  As the years go by, we will likely find more facts about the human body that may seem weird and hard to believe.  Regardless, these are weird facts that are true and backed up by scientific evidence.

1. The Tongue Is Not Mapped Into Distinct Areas Of Taste

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Back in high school, your teacher told you the tongue is divided into sections according to taste receptors. The taste of sweet on the tip, bitter in the back, and so on.  However, recent scientific studies have revealed that the map we once thought was accurate, is actually inaccurate.  So the next time you eat something sweet, remember it is not from receptors specifically located at the tip of your tongue.

What we do know is that there are at least 5 basic tastes: sweet, sour, bitter, salty and the recently discovered taste of umami  (or savoriness).  A study published in 2006 had revealed that specific types of tastes are found in specific cells that are spread throughout the tongue, making them not localized like once thought.  So it looks like all of the previous textbooks regarding human tongue maps will need to be updated for accuracy.

2. The Brain Is The Fattest Organ In The Entire Body

The average human brain is about 3 pounds and is made up of a minimum of about 60% fat, the brain is the fattest organ in the human body. It is even more fascinating that if the blood vessels were to stretch end-to-end, they would be approximately 100,000 miles long.

Humans are the only known animals whose brains shrink with age. They also have the largest brain to body ratio of any animal. So eventually, your brain will lose some of its extra fat.

3. High Altitudes Negatively Affect The Taste Of Food

If you have been on an airplane, you have likely experienced the bland taste of their airline food.  Scientific research has concluded that high levels of background noise coupled with the combination of dry air and pressure changes can significantly diminish the sensitivity of our palates.  This results in the food tasting less sweet or salty.  So the next time you take a flight and have unpleasant meal, it is probably not the fault of the chef.  It is more likely your own taste buds.

4. Eat Too Much And Your Hearing Is Less Sharp

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If you decide to overeat and notice your hearing is less sharp (at least temporarily), there is a reason for it.  Explained in simple terms, it is simply because you ate too much.

After filling up your stomach with too much food, more blood flow is directed to other parts of the body during the process of digestion. Therefore, our “selective hearing” is interfered with and less sharp for a temporary time.  Your focus and concentration may also be off.  The next time you make a speech or attend an event, you may want to eat a smaller meal so you can not only have better hearing, but better focus and concentration.

5. Your Left Lung Is Smaller Than Your Right Lung

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Two-thirds of the human heart is located on the left side of the body. Therefore, in order to make room for the heart, the left lung is a slightly smaller size than the right lung.

There is also another big difference between the right and left lung. The right lung is divided into three lobes (superior, middle and inferior) while the left has just two (superior and inferior).  Another good reason for a smaller left lung.

6. Human Thigh Bones Are 4 Times Stronger Than Concrete

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Although human bones are light in weight, they are incredibly strong. In fact, the femur bone (thigh) is the strongest bone in the entire body and is about 8 times stronger than concrete.  According to WikiAnswers, it is virtually impossible to break the lower joint of the femur with a hammer. The femur is also the longest bone in the human body.

7. Humans Shed About 30-40 Thousand Skin Cells Every Minute

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The skin is the largest organ in the entire body. The cells are constantly dividing and replacing old cells with new ones. The majority of humans will shed about 40 pounds of it in their lifetimes. Every minute of the day, you will lose around 30-40 thousand dead skin cells.  In a full day, you will lose around 50 million skin cells. Good thing we have billions of skin cells all together.

8. Scientists  Say A High I.Q. Is Correlated With Frequent Dreams

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Scientists claim the higher your I.Q. is, the more often you dream.  Of course, it doesn’t mean that you have a low I.Q. just because you don’t dream often.  Most of us can’t even remember half our dreams.
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9. The Middle Finger Is The Fastest Growing Nail

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Although there are several factors that can influence the growth of human nails, the middle finger is the fastest growing nail. The middle finger on the dominant hand is said to be the fastest growing of them all. The reason for this weird fact is still unknown. However, the nail growth is related to the length of the finger. The longer your finger is, the faster your nail will grow and the shorter your finger is, the slower it will grow.

Interesting Fact About Fingernails: Fingernails grow 4 times faster than toenails.

There Are Seven Names For The Second Finger On Your Hand

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, these are the seven names given:

  • Demonstrator
  • Forefinger
  • Index Finger
  • Insignitur
  • Lickpot
  • Teacher
  • Weft Finger

Out of all seven names listed, one of the common names “pointer finger” is not one of them.

10. A Decapitated Head Can Temporarily Remain Conscious

"Ivan T." (author is unknown) and is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Ivan T.” by Ivan T. is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Depending on how a head is severed, a human can actually remain conscious for around 15-20 seconds or even longer.  Creepy observations of consciousness after decapitation have been reported.