Sure, you know what a heart looks like. Well, maybe you do! If you think the human heart looks like that red paper cutout on a Valentine's Day card you bought for your sweetheart, you should stop now and find an anatomy book to read for a while. But we're betting you can get at least the major organs and maybe a few more from a picture. But all of them? To do that, you'll have to be a real expert!
One of the great thing about organs is that they can be transplanted into others after you're, well, done with them. But you don't even have to die to donate! The liver, for example, regenerates itself. So if you donate a chunk of your liver to a person in need of one, eventually yours will grow back to its former livery self. Now, not all your organs (or even most of them) can do that, so don't go giving your heart away heedlessly. Wait for someone who truly loves you! (See what we did there?)
The organs of your body form an amazing system which keeps you alive and functioning more or less normally. Some are incredibly vital, but some only come into play at certain times. We'll give you a picture, and you tell us which organ we're showing you!
The human brain weighs a little over 3 pounds. It contains over 86 billion nerve cells.
The thyroid helps control metabolism. Because the gland is larger in women than men, and increases in size during pregnancy, some African cultures have women wear choker necklace that break when the thyroid swells as an indicator of pregnancy.
A human heart pumps five quarts of blood through it every minute, which is about 2,000 gallons a day! A woman's heart beats quicker than a man--nearly 8 more beats per minute.
The liver is the largest of your internal organs. It has many, many functions that include acting as a filter to clean your body of toxins, and helping to control blood sugar.
In addition to helping digest food, the stomach helps your body's immune system to fight infections. A person could actually survive without a stomach; but then where would you put all that Monday night ice cream?
Kidneys filter the water in your body and help to regulate blood pressure. A person is able to survive with only 75% of one functioning kidney.
The prostate gland in men is about the size of a walnut, although it can swell to the size of a plum especially in older men. The function of a prostate is to create seminal fluid to mix with sperm and make semen.
When you look at the world around you, the retina in your eye actually sees it upside down, split and distorted. Your brain must put everything back into a decipherable image. The size of your eyeball now is the same as it was when you were born.
Approximately 15% of your body weight comes from your skin. It is the largest organ of your body.
Your lungs are not symmetrical; your left and right are slightly different. The lungs are the only organ that can float, and even when you think you have emptied yourself of breath, your lungs hold back a liter of air.
Scientists were unclear on the function of the pancreas until the late 19th century. It was first thought to be a shock absorber for the stomach because of its rubbery texture.
Historical evidence in language shows that people use to think that the spleen was the source for ill emotions. It still sits in Webster's Dictionary today as meaning suppressed feelings of anger or ill will.
You can hold a whole pint of liquid in your bladder. Don't worry about that meeting, if your system is healthy you can hold it for about 5 hours once it's full.
The adrenal glands release the hormones that tell you when to fight and when to run. They also help control inflammation and disease.
The gallbladder stores bile produced by the liver. It is usually approximately 8cm in length and 3cm wide.
During one average life span, more than 50 tons of food will flow through and be processed by the large intestine. The large intestine is about a quarter of the length of the small intestine, though it is much wider.
The 20 feet of the small intestine are twisted to fit in the abdomen. Most of the digestion for food happens in this organ.
Unlike most of the body, the spinal cord can work separately from the brain. It can send signals to the muscles. Your spinal cord is only about a half an inch in diameter and stops growing by the age of five.
You ear canal continues to grow every year, so quickly so that you get a new canal every year. If the old skin didn't drop away, your canal would be approximately two feet coming out of the side of your head by the time you were 20 years old.
Contrary to popular belief, your taste buds are not geographically segregated on your tongue. The tongue is the strongest muscle despite being the only muscle not supported by any bone. It is also the most sensitive.
The ovaries are specific to females. They are responsible for producing and releasing eggs in addition to sending out the female hormones such as estrogen.
The pituitary gland is considered the master gland because of all the functions that it affects. Among many other things, it functions in sexuality and reproduction, helps control metabolism and regulates mood and behavior.
The diaphragm is the muscles located under your lungs that helps them to breathe. In addition to being a respiratory organ, "diaphragm" is also the name of a contraceptive inserted into a woman before sex. Perhaps this is because it resembles the dome shape of the organ.
Muscles can not push, they can only pull. What feels like a pushing motion, such as pushing a door open, is actually a pulling of muscles from the opposite side. There are over 600 muscles in your body and they make up approximately 40% of your body.
The esophagus is not simply an empty tube by which food falls to the stomach. It contains muscles that help to pull the food down. This is why you are still able to swallow standing on your head.
Your mouth produces saliva which helps you to taste. Yoru mouth also contains a number of bacteria approximately equal to the Earth's population.
The parathyroid glands help to keep track of the calcium in your body. Parathyroid diseases can not be controlled with medication, at least not yet, but surgery and other treatments have been shown to help.
The thymus is at its largest during the fetal stage and actual shrinks as you grow. Studies so far show that the thymus has little function as an adult, but helps to nurture and grow the immune system in early stages of life.
The trachea is the air tube that connects the larynx to the lungs. Rings of cartilage make up the tube that is about four inches long.
The cochlea is what takes the sound that flows into your ears and allows you to hear it. Twenty thousand nerve cells make up this pea-sized organ.
The colon is also referred to as your large intestine. Your colon contains many bacteria and is never empty, even when you think you have emptied it.
The hypothalamus houses the pituitary gland and helps regulate many of the same hormones. It acts as the sort of manager of functions, making sure all the other organs and glands are doing what they are supposed to.
They lymph nodes are responsible for helping you to fight infection by producing white blood cells. This is why they become swollen when you feel ill.
The pharynx acts as the top tube for both the respiratory and digestive systems. It contains three parts, the nasal, oral, and laryngeal.
The parotid glands are the largest producers of the protein filled liquid known as saliva. The saliva helps people to taste, talk, and keep the mouth disease free.
This organ is a tube the connects the testicles to the vas deferens. It can be up to seven meters long and helps to transport sperm.
These gland release a chemical to help form the semen and protect the sperm as it travels through the various other sections of the reproductive system.
The ileum enables the body to absorb the vitamin B12. It is the last section of the small intestine.
The jejunum secretes an enzyme that helps to break down food. Its walls are lined with microvilli that help absorb nutrients for the body.
The larynx contains the vocal chords that vibrate when a person speaks or sings. It functions to control airflow and protect the air passage.
The duodenum helps to neutralize stomach acid. It knows to start digestion when it senses food entry and signals to the gallbladder and pancreas so they can secrete the juices needed for digestion.
Your body contains 206 bones, including 26 in each foot and 54 in each hand. Your bones stop growing during puberty so you can expect to stay the same height after reaching it.
Arteries carry blood away from the heart. When you feel your pulse, you are feeling the blood pumping through the large arteries closest to the skin.
The magic happens in the fallopian tubes. They carry sperm to the egg and fertilize it there.
Sixty percent of the semen fluid comes from the seminal vesicles. The size of these are determined by the production of sex hormones in the male body.