Few things are as complex and interesting as the human body. From the sophistication of the human skeletal and muscular systems to the intricate variety of complex organ systems, there is no end to fascinating facts about the body. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • Humans are born without kneecaps. Babies are born with cartilage in their joints and knees, which gradually hardens over time. The patella (or knee cap) is fully formed between 2 and 6 years old. This process is thought to be a protection mechanism that makes it easier for babies to crawl and prevents injury while learning to walk. 
  • A baby is born with 300 bones. Gradually, some of those bones fuse together so that by the time the child reaches adulthood, he has only 206 bones. 
  • One foot has 26 bones — which means our feet make up one quarter of the total number of bones in our body. 
  • The length of your foot is equal to the length of your forearm. 
  • The strongest and longest bone in the human skeleton is the femur, which most people call their “thigh bone.” 
  • Bone is stronger than steel (but 50 times lighter) and composed of 31% water. That’s why if you are dehydrated, your bones may hurt. 
  • Bones make up almost 14% of our body weight. On the other hand, our muscles constitute about 40% of our body weight.
  • The body has about 600 muscles. 
  • The tongue is the strongest muscle in the human body and contains 10,000 taste buds. 
  • It takes about 17 muscles to smile and 43 muscles to frown. 
  • Ironically, the largest internal organ is the small intestine, measuring about 21 feet long. The large intestine is only about 6 feet long. 
  • Our skin is considered the largest organ system and, in an adult, can weigh 8-10 pounds. 
  • Every square inch of skin on the human body has about 32 million bacteria on it. Fortunately, the majority of them are harmless. The same square inch of human skin contains 625 sweat glands. 
  • On average, we produce 1.7 liters of saliva each day. 
  • It takes five to 30 seconds to chew food and 10 seconds to swallow. 
  • Digestion starts in the mouth, not the stomach! Chewing and saliva start the process of digestion. The stomach requires food to be thoroughly disintegrated before it mixes with stomach acid.
  • The left lung is smaller then the right lung in order to make room for the heart. 
  • The average adult takes over 20,000 breaths a day. 
  • Our lungs inhale over two million liters of air every day.
  • The size of an adult heart is about the same size as two fists. A child’s heart is about the same size as a child’s fist. 
  • The aorta is the largest artery in the body and is close in diameter to a garden hose.
  • The human heart will beat more than 2.5 billion times in a lifetime and beats about 100,000 times a day. 
  • If a kitchen faucet was left on for 45 years, it would equal the amount of blood pumped by the heart in an average lifetime. 
  • The only area in the body to receive no blood supply is our corneas (in the eye).
  • The heart pumps blood to all of the body’s 75 trillion cells. 
  • When the body is at rest, it only takes six seconds for the blood to go from the heart to the lungs and back. It takes eight seconds for the blood to go to the brain and back, and sixteen seconds for blood to reach the toes and travel all the way back to the heart. 
  • Finally, it is impossible to sneeze with your eyes open!

Pathways to Healing specializes in holistic chiropractic care. Dr. Alyssa Musgrove draws on a variety of techniques, including chiropractic, kinesiology, nutrition, food allergy testing and lifestyle counseling to assist clients in achieving optimal health and wellness in one setting. Pathways to Healing is located at 1022 Founders Row, Lake Oconee Village, Greensboro. The office can be reached at 706-454-2040.

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