The most important part of the human body is, without a doubt, the brain.
The brain is able to regulate our breathing and blood pressure, without us ever having to think about it, all while we plan a grocery list and check the Incept Facebook page. It shapes how we perceive the world around us, keeps track of all of the complicated rhythms and workings of our bodies and manages even more difficult tasks such as chemistry homework and navigating rush-hour traffic. How exactly does it handle all of these amazing feats, especially all at once?
The brain is a master analyzer. All day every day, it’s bombarded with sensory input, not just from our eyes and ears, but from every organ and every inch of skin all over our bodies. The brain is the head (no pun intended) of the nervous system, which includes the spinal cord and all of the 10 trillion nerve cells. The brain itself contains about 100 billion cells and weighs about 3 lbs. in an adult human.
From the time we are three weeks old (in utero) until the end of our lives, our brain sends out and receives electrochemical signals from every neuron in the body. After analyzing these signals, it’s able to control and adjust anything in the body. To accomplish this, different parts of the brain are in charge of different jobs.
The brain stem manages everything from heart rate, body temperature and even our breathing, while the occipital lobe (in the rear of the brain) interprets the images captured by our eyes. As the eyes take in an image, the picture is flipped upside down by the lens in the eye before the information travels along the occipital nerve and into the occipital lobe where it is deciphered. Furthermore, the cerebellum gathers all of the information from the rest of the body and helps coordinate our movements.
For those of us interested in the analytical powers of the brain, however, the frontal lobe is our primary concern. The frontal lobe is where our emotions and personality are housed and allows us to solve problems and decide what to do with all of the information the rest of our brain has gathered. It is the largest section of the human brain and with good reason! How else could it manage such complicated work?
All in all, the human brain is an amazing organ. Even though it’s often compared to a super computer, some of the people I know can multitask twice as well and not freeze up! So the next time you’re racking your brain trying to remember the word on the tip of your tongue, take a second to appreciate just how amazing that analyzer really is. Computer companies have nothing on nature!