9 brain facts you didn't knew yet
By 16 August 2018
Everyone knows how enormously important our brain is, our brain is one of the most important organs of our body. But how does our brain actually work? A lot of people don’t know the parts the brain consists of and their functions yet, this is not surprising because the brain is one of the most complex organs of our body. In addition, our brain becomes more complex through evolution every day.
There are probably a lot of things that you do not know about your own brain yet. Here are 9 facts to create an image of how special and interesting the brain is:
Fact 1: Your brain has about 86 billion neurons
Neurons are important cells within the nervous system. These neurons are responsible for receiving and sending nerve impulses, these nerve impulses are also called an action potential. Together these cells form a string of fibres through which the impulses are sent. We call this string of fibres the "Axon".
Within the cell body, is the core of the nerve. This core is called the "nucleus". Around the nucleus are dendrites, these are extensions of the nucleus that spread the impulses received from other neural cells to the cell body.
Fact 2: The brain of an adult woman weighs about 1.3kg, the brain of an adult male weighs about 1.5kg
In the first six months of your life, your brain grows to about half the weight of an adult's brain. When you are about two and a half, your brain has reached 75% of its size. When you reach the age of six, this is 90%. Ultimately, the brain of an adult woman grows to 1.3 kg and that of a man to 1.5 kg. Unfortunately for the men, the weight of the brain says nothing about your intelligence.
Fact 3: Your brain exists for about 2% of your body weight
The adult brain weighs approximately 2% of the total body weight. However, when your weight is above or below average, this does not mean that the weight of your brain will also increase or decrease. Although your brain is only 2% of your total body weight, it consumes up to 25% of your total energy needs.
Fact 4: Every day we lose 85,000 neurons
We lose up to more than 85,000 neurons (cells) every single day, that is approximately 1 per second. Within a single year, you lose up to 31 million cells. But don't worry, this doesn't mean you will immediately experience a cognitive decline as a result!
Fact 5: Your brain continues to make new connections throughout your whole live
Every time you recall a memory or have a new thought, your brain makes new connections. So you lose neurons, but you also create them again.
Fact 6: The creation of new cells by mental activity is called neuroplasticity
By developing, learning or gaining experience, neuroplasticity takes place. After practising specific tasks, people will carry out the often performed tasks more efficiently. The increasing efficiency after repeatedly performing a task is also called functional plasticity. For example, after a period of brain training, you will perform specific tasks better with our brain games.
Fact 7: Your brain doesn't have any pain receptors
Your body feels pain because there are pain receptors in your body. These pain receptors send a signal to the brain, causing you to actual experience the pain. However, the brain itself has no pain receptors. Your brain itself can therefore not experience pain.
Fact 8: There are about 93,200 miles of blood vessels in your brain
There are approximately 93,200 miles of blood vessels in your brain. If you put all these blood vessels behind each other, it would have the length of almost 4 times around the earth. Your brain needs all these blood vessels because it uses more than 20% of your daily oxygen intake.
Fact 9: Your brain generates 10 to 23 watts of energy
While you are awake, your brain generates around 10 to 23 watts of energy. This is enough energy to make an energy-saving lightbulb shine. However, your IQ has no influence on both the consumption and the generation of energy by your brain.
As mentioned in this list, your brain makes a new connection every time you recall or have new thoughts. Your brain also makes new cells through mental activities, this means your brain can be trained. Want to know more about how you can train your brain? Read all about brain training or view our brain games.