According to Brazilian-born neuroscientist Suzana Herculano-Houzel‘s research, we have around 86 billion neurons—the brain’s nerve cells—”packed into a mere 1,400 grams of matter in the human brain.” How do we power all of those neurons? How do these nerve cells stay ready to ‘fire’ or react at a moment’s notice?
This Seeker video explores How Your Brain Powers Your Thoughts, from the glucose that neurons and muscles require to function, to adenosine triphosphate (ATP), to how neurons pass ions to each other, and more.
Plus, a key takeaway: A banana has the 25 grams of sugar optimal for your brain to work. “So if you’re ever in a fog, take a break, have a bite, and let your ‘thinky meat’ recover.”
Follow this with Small Circuits, an animation from Harvard’s excellent Fundamentals of Neuroscience MOOC, and Schoolhouse Rock’s Telegraph Line (Nervous System).
Related reading: Neuroscience for kids.