Do You Believe These Claims?
Consider these "claimed" facts relative to the human body (U.S.-based):
- When two years of age, doubling a child's height provides a "close" estimate of his/her final adult height.
- In six months, each fingernail and toenail will grow the length of its base to its tip.
- Thought it accounts for only 2% of our body weight, the brain uses 20% of our oxygen supply, 20% of our eaten calories, and 15% of our blood supply.
- The adult body has 650 muscles, more than 100 joints, and 50,000 miles (yes miles!) of blood vessels/capillaries.
- The heart beats more than 2.8 billion times during an average life span, pumping 60 million gallons of blood.
- While one is asleep, their heart pumps about 80 gallons of blood per hour, enough to fill a small car car's gas tank every 9-10 minutes.
- If the lung's 300 million alveoli (little air sacs) were flattened out, they would cover an area of about 1000 square feet.
- Our largest organ is our skin, which for a man covers about 20 square feet and for a woman covers about 17 square feet.
- Our skin flakes away and is replaced every four weeks, implying that over a lifetime a person sheds about 105 pounds of skin and wears about 1000 new "skin outfits."
- Each night while at rest, your body height increases by about 0.3 inches, then shrinks down during the day.
- Over one's lifetime, the average person eats more than 50 tons of food and drinks more than 13,000 gallons of liquid.
Your Task: Devise experiments to test the validity of the claims #1, #2, #10, and #11. Also, think about the others in terms of their implications....or how they could be tested.
Source: Adapted from Reader's Digest Book of Facts, 1987, p. 194.