Monday, November 02, 2015


Fun facts about the human body

My last few health columns have been about very serious topics: domestic violence, prostate cancer, breast cancer, and suicide prevention. These are all important but intense topics, so for a lighthearted change I thought it would be enjoyable to compile a list of fun facts about our bodies. Some are surprising, some fascinating and some just plain odd.

• Everyone has a unique smell, except for identical twins, who smell the same.

• A human fetus acquires fingerprints at the age of three months.

• Like fingerprints, every individual has a unique tongue print that can be used for identification. I guess that means you shouldn’t stick your tongue out at someone if you want to hide your identify.

• The fastest growing nail is on the middle finger.

• It is a fact that people who dream more often and more vividly, on an average have a higher Intelligence Quotient.

• Sneezes regularly exceed 100 mph, while coughs clock in at about 60 mph.

• It is not possible to tickle yourself. This is because when you attempt to tickle yourself you are totally aware of the exact time and manner in which the tickling will occur, unlike when someone else tickles you. (source:

• Your nose is not as sensitive as a dog's, but it can remember 50,000 different scents.

• Your pet isn't the only one in the house with a shedding problem. Humans shed about 600,000 particles of skin every hour. That works out to about 1.5 pounds each year, so the average person will lose around 105 pounds of skin by age 70. (source:

• Around half of all teen-agers are sleep-deprived. (source:

• We spend about 10% of our waking hours with our eyes closed, blinking.

• Your heartbeat changes and mimics the music you listen to. (Source:

• Athazagoraphobia is the fear of being ignored or forgotten.

• Beards are the fastest growing hairs on the human body. If the average man never trimmed his beard, it would grow to nearly 30 feet long in his lifetime.

Now that is some useless but fascinating information for us all to ponder.

Alice Facente is a community health nurse for the Backus Health System. This advice should not replace the advice of your personal health care provider. To comment on this column or others, visit the Healthy Living blog at or e-mail Ms. Facente or any of the Healthy Living columnists at

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