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By the end of this section, you will be able to:
  • Discuss the role of oxygen and nutrients in maintaining human survival
  • Explain why extreme heat and extreme cold threaten human survival
  • Explain how the pressure exerted by gases and fluids influences human survival

Humans have been adapting to life on Earth for at least the past 200,000 years. Earth and its atmosphere have provided us with air to breathe, water to drink, and food to eat, but these are not the only requirements for survival. Although you may rarely think about it, you also cannot live outside of a certain range of temperature and pressure that the surface of our planet and its atmosphere provides. The next sections explore these four requirements of life.

Oxygen

Atmospheric air is only about 20 percent oxygen, but that oxygen is a key component of the chemical reactions that keep the body alive, including the reactions that produce ATP. Brain cells are especially sensitive to lack of oxygen because of their requirement for a high-and-steady production of ATP. Brain damage is likely within five minutes without oxygen, and death is likely within ten minutes.

Nutrients

A nutrient    is a substance in foods and beverages that is essential to human survival. The three basic classes of nutrients are water, the energy-yielding and body-building nutrients, and the micronutrients (vitamins and minerals).

The most critical nutrient is water. Depending on the environmental temperature and our state of health, we may be able to survive for only a few days without water. The body’s functional chemicals are dissolved and transported in water, and the chemical reactions of life take place in water. Moreover, water is the largest component of cells, blood, and the fluid between cells, and water makes up about 70 percent of an adult’s body mass. Water also helps regulate our internal temperature and cushions, protects, and lubricates joints and many other body structures.

The energy-yielding nutrients are primarily carbohydrates and lipids, while proteins mainly supply the amino acids that are the building blocks of the body itself. You ingest these in plant and animal foods and beverages, and the digestive system breaks them down into molecules small enough to be absorbed. The breakdown products of carbohydrates and lipids can then be used in the metabolic processes that convert them to ATP. Although you might feel as if you are starving after missing a single meal, you can survive without consuming the energy-yielding nutrients for at least several weeks.

Water and the energy-yielding nutrients are also referred to as macronutrients because the body needs them in large amounts. In contrast, micronutrients are vitamins and minerals. These elements and compounds participate in many essential chemical reactions and processes, such as nerve impulses, and some, such as calcium, also contribute to the body’s structure. Your body can store some of the micronutrients in its tissues, and draw on those reserves if you fail to consume them in your diet for a few days or weeks. Some others micronutrients, such as vitamin C and most of the B vitamins, are water-soluble and cannot be stored, so you need to consume them every day or two.

Questions & Answers

how many litres of blood does a human body have
George Reply
what is homeostasis
Antwi Reply
it is self regulating ability of the body to adjust to the surroundings
Angela
it is like maintaining an equilibrium type of environment between the inside and outside of the body, so that our body can adjust to the external environmental changes
Angela
this is the negative feedback loop of the body,.... that naturally helps to keep the body in a stable or constant internal environment.
Matthew
this is the activities in the body that keeps the internal environment of the body in equilibrium or to keep it constant.
Ikenze
list four long bones
Mary Reply
the four long bones are: tibia, fibula, femur, and humerus.
Isaac
from Zambia
Mary
femur, radius , ulnar, humerus
Om
humerus, femur, tibia and fibula
Sheryl
Humerus,redius,ulnar,in hand. Femur,tibia,fibula in leg. it is long bone.
Sneha
there is contradiction between radius ulna & tibia fibula because of the variation in the upper and lower limb of the according to growth and development of human body so humerus & femur are longer bones ( ex you can see Michael phaleps upper limb is longer than the lower limb)
Prashant
if anyone having dout so he she can please explain it to me
Prashant
which one want explain something
Dr
sir post which I have send look at it & tell is it correct or not
Prashant
about four long bones is the topic
Prashant
femur, humerus, tibia and fibula
Ikenze
how are you doing
Rekah Reply
hi everyone.
AR
Im new here, I came from the philippines. I study nursing. Im a first year student.
AR
really
Isaac
so what help do you want
Isaac
yeah I came from the philippines..and I have struggle about this subject the anatomy and physiology because I dont any books that I barrowed with. I cant afford buy books.
AR
hii
Meher
I'm from India
Jamy
I struggle with this subject
Jamy
can I ask here a question I hope you can help me because I dont have any references/books that I should see or read it.
AR
AR
Meher
you are from india nice to talk to you jamy.
AR
Alright Always drop your concerns here and they will be addressed. Thanks sister.
Isaac
nice meeting with you
Jamy
I am also from India
shiv
thank you Isaac.
AR
yes Meher?
AR
you are all india
AR
By the way I have question
AR
describe a person in anatomical position?
AR
i come from Ghana
Isaac
are you all nursing students?
AR
no I'm pharmacy student
Jamy
oh nice.
AR
yes
shiv
jamy me too
Meher
yes
shiv
yes
shiv
my name is sweety
Jamy
you have any chat group that we can talk there.
AR
Anatomical position is the description of any region or part of the body in a specific stance. In the anatomical position, the body is upright, directly facing the observer, feet flat and directed forward. The upper limbs are at the body's sides with the palms facing forward. The standard anatomic
Isaac
yes
shiv
jamy is my nick name
Jamy
I am a nursing student
Isaac
thank you Isaac
AR
Final year, level 400
Isaac
ohh what year are you now?
AR
Nice
AR
welcome madam
Isaac
do you have any chat group here
AR
describe the six levels of organization of the body and describe the major characteristics of each level?
AR
ahh its okay jammy
AR
jammy i am from kashmir nd u
Meher
It is convenient to consider the structures of the body in terms of fundamental levels of organization that increase in complexity, such as (from smallest to largest): chemicals, cells, tissues, organs, organ systems, and an organism.
Isaac
hi
Yaminah
am from somalia
Yaminah
5th year in medical student nice to meet ya all
Yaminah
thxs yaminah
Meher
y not.. jamy for what purpose...?
Meher
inbox me i will guide u ...?
Meher
i also dont know...?
Meher
open this app - click 'start learning' - click 'preface' - select the chat that you wanna join into I guess that is it !
Angela
Hello am from Sierra Leone
junisa
I am from Kerala
Angela
I am from india
Om
I am from Tripura
FAKE
tell the easyst way to learn anatomy
Khaliif Reply
try to draw 👌
Rahil
what
shiv
learn subject with drawing anatomy diagrams some with flow chart i dont say it is easiest way bt yes u can rember for longer period
Shakerah
ooh
shiv
hello im new here, im a nursing student
SHUGA Reply
ooh
shiv
welcome
shiv
wlcm
Rahil
dub
Ndowmi
maleria
Ndowmi
Anopheles
shiv
welcome shuga
Om
please am new here. Am a nurse awaiting to be posted .
Ntiamoah
hi I'm new here too
faleke
Feleke Sharon Welcome
FAKE
FAKE DrLUPO thank you
faleke
hello guys
Chuks
hello guys 🤗
Sneha
hello
Chuks
whose in Nigeria
Chuks
🙋🙋
faleke
what is inner breeding
Vijay Reply
you don't have any answer
Vijay
please don't waste my time
Vijay
wait
shiv
inbreeding is mating or breeding with organism that are genetically related
shiv
s
Pankaj
who this SRY
Pankaj
inner breeding is breeding among the same species of organisms
Anna
*inbreeding
Anna
yes same speciesor same genetic organism
shiv
description of the menstruation cycle
Namyalo Reply
explain the menstruation cycle
Namyalo
explain the menstrual cycle
Ugo
menstrual cycle is came due to FSH and LH
shiv
fsh
Ndowmi
This is the periodic release of waste(blood) from the reproductive organ of the females (human) for a period of some days, after which or during then, ovulation takes place, which is the release of eggs from the ovaries for fertilization by the spermatozoa.
Ikenze
Description of menestraul cycle
Amos Reply
what is the anatomy
FAKE Reply
Anatomy is study of structure of organs.
Sneha
thanks
FAKE
The scientific study of the structure of human or animal bodies.
FAKE
I was confused as to which one would be right and I asked
FAKE
My answer and you answer both are right.
Sneha
The scientific study of the human and animal internal and external structure of the body.
Ikenze
i want to improve my study i like this app i interest physiology and anatomy
Su Reply
I also like this app am really interested in learning anatomy and physiology.
Johny
I have this book with my anatomy class it's awesome! also if look at crashcourse anatomy on you tube!
AMY
what the name
isaiah
umesh. rede
Rede
what is heart and long type answer
Lalita Reply
its a organ in the body
ay
describe about hear chambers.. valves.. arteries.. veins.. circulation.. inferior/superior venacava, aorta., tricuspid valve, mitral valve. pulmonary artery/vein, how oxigenation occur,systolic presure diastolic pressure.. stroke volume,cardiac output, ets.. heart located in which place, describe it
Sanjith
if you describe what I cited up, thogh you can write a long type answer about heart
Sanjith
hi
Riyaz
autonomic functions took over
Vanarith Reply
What did they take over?
Eric
what is the average volume of blood in men and why does it varrie from women?
Esther Reply
what is the average volume of blood in men
Esther
5to6liter
Sarita
5to6liter dt
Sarita
umesh. rede
Rede
estimated at 5.5litres
Ikenze
what is the definition of anatomy
Noriah Reply
Search google
killer
^of
chieng
The study of the structure or internal workings of something. "Machiavelli's anatomy 
Eric

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Source:  OpenStax, Anatomy & Physiology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 04, 2016 Download for free at http://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11496/1.8
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