All about your brain

Brain factoids

Strokes are all about the brain. Stoke survivors have to learn more about their brain than the typical person -- but some survivors enjoy it!  For those armchair neurosciencist out there, this is for you.

The sides of the brain
Each side of the brain (called hemispheres) interacts with the other side of the body. The right side of the brain interacts with the left side of the body, and vice versa.

But these right/left divisions also work closely with the whole brain. You could survive only having one side of your brain.

The parts of the brain

The largest part of the human brain is called the cerebrum. In fact, 85% of the total weight of a brain is the cerebrum.

brain stem
basic functions like breathing and sleep
coordination and balance.
cerebral cortex
memory, attention, perception, awareness, thought, language, and consciousness
motor control
corpus callosum
thinking and voluntary movements
inhibition, memory, and our sense of space
our hormonal system
Has multiple functions. It may be thought of as a kind of hub of information.

The brain is also divided into several lobes:
• The frontal lobes are responsible for problem solving and judgment and motor function.
• The parietal lobes manage sensation, handwriting, and body position.
• The temporal lobes are involved with memory and hearing.
• The occipital lobes contain the brain's visual processing system.

Fun Facts
  • The brain of an adult human weighs around 3 pounds (1.5 kg). Although it makes up just 2% of the body's weight, it uses around 20% of its energy.

  • The main energy source of the brain is glucose. 

  • Do you really only use 10% of your brain? No! You use your entire brain -- all the time.

  • When awake, the human brain produces enough electricity to power a small light bulb (25 watts). 

  • At least 60% of your brain is fat, and it has the same consistency as tofu. Furthermore, 75% of the total brain mass is comprised of water.

  • New brain connections are created every time you form a memory.

  • Forgetting unnecessary information helps the nervous system retain its plasticity.

  • Music can trigger activity in the same brain structure that releases the "pleasure chemical" dopamine.  

  • Yawning sends more oxygen to the brain, therefore working to cool it down and wake it up. 

  • Doing crosswords doesn't improve your brain's overall cognition or memory.