You may like to think that you know everything about yourself, but how much do you really know? Here are 10 things you didn't know about the human body.
Imagine the sound of water, sloshing round in a bottle. That’s exactly what happens when we’re hungry! Our empty stomach sloshes water round to tell us it needs food. Scientists call this borborygmus but the rest of us just know it as tummy rumblings.
Irritated by hiccups? So are they.
Hiccups are due to the diaphragm (the big, flat muscle underneath the lungs) being irritated, making us take sudden deep breaths. We don’t always know how or why this happens, just that having a long hiccupping ‘attack’ makes us very irritated too!
Your funny bone is hilarious.
The ‘funny bone’ isn’t actually a bone at all! It’s a nerve that just travels close to the skin in your elbow, so that’s why hitting it feels quite ‘funny’.
Eggy bread? How about eggy blood.
Our blood is full of microscopic proteins, but by far the most common protein is called ‘albumin’ – the same protein that makes up egg whites.
- Babies don’t have kneecaps!
You’re born with 300 bones, with some of these fusing together and some bits of cartilage becoming bone as you grow up. This means the average adult only has 206 bones.
Your heart is constantly changing.
You probably can feel your heart beating faster when you exercise, but did you know your heart rate also changes depending on the time of day and even whether you’re breathing in or out?
You can taste temperature!
Ever wonder why chillies taste hot and mint tastes cold? How can you taste temperature?! The answer is that capsaicin (chillies) and menthol (mint) accidentally activate sensors on your tongue that are only meant to turn on to warn you that your food is too hot and you’ll burn your mouth!
Heart valves are like traffic lights.
Your heart has four ‘valves’ inside which act like traffic lights for blood, stopping or starting your blood moving round the heart. When these snap shut, that is what causes the BUM-BUM noise of your heart beat!
- Sweet or savoury?
Synsepalum dulcificum is a type of berry which, when eaten, changes your tastebuds so all sour foods suddenly taste sweet.
- Sonic genes.
A very important gene in your DNA is called ‘Sonic The Hedgehog’, named after everyone’s favourite blue echidna!