12 Jun 6 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Your Body
Health is a broad, far reaching, and because of that, strange topic, with many caveats and subsections that, when explored, make you realize things about this ultra-complex mechanism known as the human body you may never have realized otherwise. These things may not necessarily affect you in any way before or after knowing them, but still help you to understand and appreciate your body and your health more because you now know them. If you are a man over 25, you may think you know everything there is to know about your body. Well this article seeks to prove you wrong on that. The following are 6 miscellaneous facts about the human body you definitely didn’t know before reading this. There are more than enough facts out there, so this list doesn’t cover everything, but these 6 are almost guaranteed to be a surprise to you.
#1. “Old person smell” is real
Believe it or not, that smell everyone smells when they’re around a senior citizen is not your sense playing tricks on you. A recent study has found that people have a certain “smell” when they’re at certain stages of their lives. Older people, for example, have a milder, more pleasant scent than a middle aged person, and certainly more so than a younger man. These natural smells are then influenced, of course, by the particular person’s hygiene, daily life and environment etc. leading to the eponymous smell. Which is why, though you know old people smell when you smell it, it never smells the same from person to person.
#2. You physically cannot poop at night
Unless you have a physical condition making you have to evacuate your bowels in the middle of the night, under normal conditions, it is almost physically impossible to poop in the middle of the night. You can urinate, for sure, because there’s only so far your kidneys can stretch before evacuation must occur.
The human body can go about 6-8 hours sleeping before it has to go, which is why one of the first things we do in the morning is take a leak. However, excrement is pushed out via a highly sophisticated system of neurons in your gut that controls the contractions of your colon. And this system is heavily influenced by your body’s circadian rhythm, your “internal clock” that wakes you up in the morning and makes you sleepy at night. So, since your brain is telling your body to sleep at night, it thus tells the colon to hold it in for another 6-8 hours. Thus, if you try to poop at night, you’re going to have a bit of trouble.
#3. Fingerprints actually weaken our grip
It was widely believed up until a few years ago that fingerprints improve our grip on objects. However, recent studies have shown that may not be the case at all. After all, if it were true, then utterly flat surfaces like plexiglass would be simple to hold onto, when in reality it is not. In fact, if anything, the ridges formed by our fingerprints may actually weaken our rip because they reduce the contact area of the skin. Instead, fingerprints are theorized to help our fingers wick water off of our fingertips or help the skin on the fingers stretch when under intense stress, protecting it from damage.
#4. The growling in your stomach is your stomach begging for food
We’ve all been there, you’re in public, likely in some super important meeting or class that got you out of the house before you could any type of substantial breakfast. And sure enough, your stomach starts growling. All eyes turn, somehow knowing exactly who it was. You’re probably wondering what that is. Well, it turns out that yes, it is your stomach literally begging you to feed it. When your stomach “growls”, that means the digestive juices are churning around as the stomach muscles contract. This is the action taken by a stomach that needs food, and is thus preparing itself for food, getting the digestive juices flowing around for maximum effect and making sure the stomach muscles are ready to process the food that eventually comes. The solution to this is simple, eat smaller meals more often throughout the day.
#5. Your pits stink because of bacteria
We all sweat, all over our bodies in fact. So what is it about the sweat in our armpits that makes it so stinky? Sweat isn’t exactly the best smelling thing in the world, granted, but there’s something so uniquely disgusting about pit stink that is all its own. The answer is astoundingly simple: bacteria. The human body has two types of sweat glands. The glands on your arms, legs, and most other places release what’s essentially saltwater. The sweat in your armpits and groin, on the other hand, is made of a more oily substance, which the bacteria in those areas consume. The stink is released by the bacteria as they consume the oil.
#6. Osteoarthritis can predict bad weather
It’s not an exact science, but in 2007, a research team working at Tufts University ran a test where they measured the fall of temperature and how it related with osteoarthritic knee pain. They found that, for every ten degrees dropped, the pain increased by a small margin. Small, but noticeable. When a bad storm is approaching an area, the atmospheric pressure in that area drops, which causes body tissue to expand. Which, if you have pain in your joints, can cause serious swelling and pain. Not to say this makes the arthritic masters of predicting weather, but if you have arthritis, and you notice a sudden spike in pain for no discernable reason, it’s probably time to get inside.