As you may already know (because you’ve got one of your own), the human body is an amazing thing. Over the hundreds of thousands of years we’ve existed in our current form, the body has evolved in all sorts of ways. We tan in the sun, we get colds in the winter, and we all love a good bath once in a while. But there are a few things that our bodies do that you might not know about. So here goes: six of the weirdest and most wonderful facts about the human body!
You shed 600,000 skin cells per hour
Have you ever brushed over some skin in a beam of sunlight and seen the particles fly away? Well, that’s your skin. Tiny particles of dead skin come off us all the time, and scientists tell us that we usually have 600,000 of these cells fly off per hour. That’s a lot of dead skin in the air!
Your nose (or brain) can remember around 50,000 smells
You probably thought a dog’s nose was fairly sensitive, and you’d be right; but that doesn’t mean that our noses don’t have keen senses too. Between the brain and the nose working together, each of us is able to ‘remember’ 50,000 smells. So now there’s even more reason to stop and smell the flowers now and again!
You sneeze at 100mph
Sneezing is one of those reactions that we simply can’t control, much like coughing or itching. But did you know that when you sneeze, air is forced out of your nasal passages at more than 100 miles per hour? That’s incredibly fast, and just goes to show why it’s so easy for colds and flu to be spread when people are sneezing a lot. In fact, at that speed there’s every chance you could catch a cold from across a room – so make sure you keep a hankerchief handy wherever you go!
It takes 6 months for a fingernail to grow
Our fingernails are useful things. They keep our fingers safe and protected from harm, and (if you’re a lady) they can be made to look very attractive. If you’ve ever torn or broken a nail, you’ll know that it takes quite a while for it to grow back. But the actual figure is that it takes a fingernail six whole months to grow from base to tip. Obviously we’d never usually need to grow a whole one at a time, but that’s still a fascinating stat!
85% of your brain is water
You’d be forgiven for thinking that your brain is made up solely of cells and grey mush. In fact, look at a brain in the open and that’s exactly what it’ll look like! But much like the rest of our bodies, the human brain is made up in large part of water. This is necessary as the brain essentially ‘floats’ in our skull – so the more water there is to cushion it, the better! Water is also an essential building block of life, and our brain is the core of our existence, so it all adds up. It’s what keeps us going whether we’re playing classical piano or browsing the web for park home insurance – and without it we’d be in more than a bit of trouble! And don’t forget that storing all of those memories, experiences, tastes, and smells must be thirty work!
You grow by about 8mm every night
This one seems completely absurd, but it’s very much true. Every night, while you are asleep, you actually gain 0.8cm in height. It’s not much, but it still makes a difference. Of course, as soon as you wake up again the height disappears – but why? Well, the reason for this height gain is that the vertebrae in your spine spread out a little when you are lying down. When you stand up again in the morning, the spine compresses and you get ever so slightly shorter. So, apologies if you were planning on sleeping your way into the basketball big leagues!
So there you have it: six fascinating bodily facts! But it doesn’t end there, there are plenty of other weird and wonderful things that your body can do; but let’s leave discovering them up to you!
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