Have you ever thought about what it would be like to have extra body parts? The human body is an amazing and complex machine with multiple complex systems. Of course, it is far from perfect. The body has plenty of flaws and unnecessary evolutionary traits (such as wisdom teeth) that still hang around. We are going to talk hypothetically about how 3 extra body parts could potentially save millions of lives if they were part of the human body. If only people could redesign the body.
According to scientists, the human species first began to evolve approximately 200,000 years ago. Whether you believe you were created by a god, or evolved by the process of natural selection, this post will certainly get you thinking. With roughly 150,000 deaths per day (worldwide), additions to our body could have prevented many accidental deaths. Our first body part is a human tail.
#1 A Human Tail For Better Balance
Human vestigiality is defined as human traits that have lost all or most of their original functions through the process of evolution. The traits can be either organs or behaviors. The human appendix, tailbone, wisdom teeth and goose bumps (behavioral) are just a couple of examples.
The coccyx (or the tailbone) is the final segment of the vertebral column in humans and apes (and other animals such as horses). It is located at the end of the spine and is the remnant of a lost tail.
At some point in development, all mammals will have a tail. In fact, (believe it or not) even humans will have a tail for a period of 4 weeks. The tail in humans are present during stages 14 to 22 of human embryogenesis. Although the coccyx has lost its original functions, which are assisting balance and mobility, it still serves as an attachment point for muscles. In very rare cases, one can have a congenital defect that results in a short tail-like structure that is present at birth. There have only been 23 reported cases of humans born with a short tail in the medical literature since 1884. Humans with this rare congenital defect can successfully have their tail removed with surgery.
See a video of a man with a real 14.5 inch tail in our post on human oddities.
Why Did Our Ancestors Lose Their Tails?
Although it is still unknown why humans no longer have tails, there are theories. A major function of tails is balance. Since our ancestors began to walk on two legs, the tail was no longer needed.
Human Deaths Resulting From Falls
According to Wikipedia, falling is the second leading cause of accidental death worldwide. In 2013, there were 556,000 deaths that resulted from falls. Perhaps, a human tail could help prevent falls.
Read about a famous man who fell and broke his neck from tripping over his beard (in a past post).
A Hypothetical “Super Human Tail”
What if humans never lost their tails? The tail may have evolved into a trait that can provide much better balance. Of course, it wouldn’t look very attractive, but if it was with us since the beginning of humanity, we wouldn’t know the difference. We are going to call it a “super human tail”.
How Would The Tail Function?
Falls can even occur when one is in the standing position. This often causes serious injuries, especially in the elderly. The super tail could act as a backup for balance when the legs give out. When it is needed, it could expand to serve its purpose. When it is not needed, it could just shrink to a smaller size. This tail would not only help prevent thousands of injuries, but also deaths.
#2 An Extra Hole For Eating & Drinking = No More Deaths From Choking On Food
A Extra Hole For Eating And Drinking
What if humans had a separate hole for eating and drinking? They would still have the same hole for breathing and talking. However, the extra hole for eating and drinking would be located in a spot that would make choking impossible. The hole would prevent the death of many children and adults. Of course, people often talk with their mouths full, but this extra hole would also allow for talking and eating simultaneously without one having to sacrifice their manners for a tasty bite.
A Hole Like Dolphins?
#3 An Extra Heart
What if the human body had two hearts instead of just one? We already have two lungs, kidneys and eyes so why not two hearts? One might think that an extra heart could perhaps double the performance of its function. According to physiologist Bruce Martin, since your heart pumps blood to the muscles, a second heart would eventually give a person more endurance and also cause your muscles to grow stronger. However, this is based on a human suddenly getting an extra heart. What if you were already born with two functional hearts? Are two hearts better than one?
A Hypothetical Extra Heart
Sadly, the leading cause of death in the United States is heart disease. About 610,000 Americans will die each year (that is 1 in every 4 deaths). Wouldn’t it be nice to eliminate (or at least shrink) this leading cause of death? The extra heart would have the capability to not only pump blood (in addition to the other heart), but it would also act as a backup heart when the other goes bad.
When the other heart goes bad, the extra heart would be fully functional. It wold no longer have the job of just pumping blood along with your other heart. When arteries are blocked, it would provide another pathway for blood to reach it. It has the ability to detect and eliminate plaque buildup. It will open blocked arteries, which would allow for better blood flow through your organs and tissues. We will call this extra heart the “super heart”. It could help decrease the chances of death from heart disease. It certainly would be a necessary organ for long-term survival.
An Animal With Three Hearts
Interestingly, octopuses have three hearts. One heart helps keeps circulation flowing for the organs. The other two hearts work solely for the purpose of moving blood beyond the animal’s gills.
Now that we have discussed three extra body parts that could save the lives of many people, do you have any more ideas that could potentially save lives, or at least improve convenience? Maybe a third eye located behind your head for extra vision, or a sensor that can detect odorless danger (such as carbon monoxide) to help prevent accidental deaths? Feel free to share your idea below.