The human body is an immensely complex network of interwoven coeval systems. In order to continue reproducing, digesting, absorbing oxygen, moving, and pretty much anything else, the body relies upon groups of tissues and organs working together. Most of the ailments and symptoms that people experience affect them due to a breakdown in how these systems work or interact.
This article is a brief guide to some of the most important systems in the body. It is not intended as an anatomical guide but more of a quick introduction.
The skeletal and muscular system is responsible for the structural integrity and movement of the body. Like all vertebrates, human beings have developed a rigid endoskeleton surrounded by muscles, tendons, and ligaments, and when each of these experiences pain, it can be difficult to move past this. Fortunately, experts have developed ways to tackle these problems to ensure that the skeletal and muscular systems are always in working order for as many people as possible.
Interestingly, some animals, such as sharks, do not have bones despite being vertebrates and rely entirely upon cartilage, while the human body contains 206 distinct bones and many different groupings of muscles and connective tissues. The muscular-skeletal system has remarkable regenerative abilities but does need a helping hand every now and again.
Don’t forget to breathe! Breathing, as you very likely already know well, is somewhat essential to human homeostasis. The respiratory system – which contains 12 organs – contains all of the interdependent elements needed to extract oxygen from the air and expel carbon dioxide. This key exchange reveals the essential interplay between animal and plant life. Animals take in oxygen and expel carbon dioxide, while plants take in carbon dioxide and expel oxygen.
The digestive system is responsible for the conversion of food and drink into usable energy. Your stomach, intestines, liver, mouth, and pancreas are all absolutely essential for digestion. The digestive system contains multiple organs dedicated to breaking down and reacting to different elements of food and drink. The pancreas, for instance, reacts to carbohydrates in your diet and produces insulin in order to convert them into usable energy.
The cardiovascular system is responsible for delivering blood around the body. Blood carries everything organs and tissues need to continue living – including oxygen. The heart lies at the center of the human cardiovascular system. On average, the heart pumps about 5 liters of blood through the body every minute despite being only about the size of a clenched fist. If all of the veins in the human body were laid out in a line, they would be around 60,000 miles long: enough to wrap around the earth twice over.
All living things, both animal and plant, are by definition able to reproduce in some form. This can be as minute and simple a process as a cell splitting to form two cells or as complex as human reproduction. The human reproductive system includes organs and specialized cells containing chromosomes. Although technology has allowed for human reproduction to occur without intercourse, the basic necessity of egg and sperm coming together remains.
Humans have a very unusual gestation lasting nine months but have difficulty giving birth – in part because the skeletons have evolved for standing upright.