Important Ions in the Body and the Roles They Play Everyday Functions of the Human Body The human body uses many forms of energy to conduct daily activities. These activities can be ones that we are doing physically or they can be as basic as the breakdown of enzymes within our body or the digestion of food. Chemical energy, electrical energy, mechanical energy, and electromagnetic energy are a few but important forms of the type of energy utilized by the human body. Ions play an important role in creating the electrical energy that is used by everyone on a daily basis.
Some types of these ions will be explained throughout the essay. Electricity is a fundamental component of nature consisting of negative and positive particles exhibiting attractions and repulsions. These attractions and repulsions create charged particles that then become electrical current. This is an important form of energy that is critical to the functioning of the human body. The phenomenon of Ions An ion is an atom or a group of atoms that have an electrical charge by either gaining or losing electrons in its outer shell, also known as valence electrons.
Valence electrons are those electrons in the outer ring of electrons orbiting the nucleus of the atom. Ions may exist in solid, liquid, or gaseous environments, although those in liquid are more common and familiar. Ions that are charged with positive electricity are known as cations and travel towards a negative pole known as a cathode. Ions that are charged with negative electricity are known as anions and travel towards a positive pole known as an anode. The phrase “opposites attract” is a good depiction of this reaction. Electrolytes; how ions keep us going.
Ions existing in a liquid state are electrolytes. An electrolyte is any compound that, in solution, conducts electricity and is decomposed or electrolyzed by the electricity. Electrolytes play an essential role in the function of the human body. As ions move from the solutions inside the cells of our body to the solutions outside the cells electrical energy is created from these cells. In other words the transfer of these ions from one cell to another performs various activities that are crucial to the basic functions of the human body.
For example the nervous system uses electrical energy, called nerve impulses, to transmit messages from one cell in the body to another cell in the body. muscle movement, glandular secretion (sweat), excretion, temperature regulation, and even mental thought. Many sports drinks on the market today emphasize the replenishment of electrolytes. A well known example of this would be Gatorade who claims to have the most abundant source of electrolytes on the market today and market it towards athletes and people who sweat while working out or doing other athletic activities.
The important aspect Gatorade focuses on is since the body loses electrolytes while working out, as noted before from glandular secretion caused by electrical energy, the sports drink replenishes the body of these electrolytes that are lost when we work out. Many important processes that occur in the body depend on the movement of ions across the outer surfaces of cells. For example, in our bodies, the nervous and muscular systems use the electrolyte properties of ionic sodium and potassium to move across the outer surfaces of cells near muscles and nerve cells that create impulses which in turn is seen as simply as a muscle twitch.
Calcium is another element present in the body that effects not only muscle contractions but the growth of bones as well. A number of ions can be found in the human body, all which affects the electrical energy we use on a day to day basis. Copper, potassium, chloride, sodium, and chloride are only a few of these types of ions. Potassium is the major positive ion inside the cell. Sodium is the major positive ion found in the fluid outside the cell. Ionic chlorine is the most abundant negative ion. These ions are important as well as the balance between them, in the functional process of sending electrical messages throughout the body.
An unevenness of any these ions could affect the ability of the human body to transmit electrical signals between cells. Ions are very important to the human body in almost every aspect. Ion comes from the Greek word “ion” meaning “going. ” This is exactly what these are doing for the human body. They are there to create energy for us, as well as complete numerous tasks necessary to live. There are more ions present in the body that all play different roles in our bodies that will be discussed further in the final draft.