National Kidney Day

It Now Has A Purpose

It Now Has A Purpose
National Kidney Day

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As long as I can remember, I have always been told that the appendix has no purpose. In medical school the professors even taught us that the appendix had no purpose and it didn’t matter if people had it removed. Hmm, wonder why God saw fit to put such a useless thing within the human body if there was no purpose for it? I also heard that God doesn’t create junk.

The appendix is a worm shaped structure found in the abdomen usually on the lower right side of the small intestines. Studies have shown that this weird useless structure has evolved 32 times among mammals. It is now believed that the appendix helps protect our “good” bacteria in our gut or colon. That’s great because that helps our immune system.

Charles Darwin believed that the function of the appendix was there because our distant ancestors survived on a diet of leaves so they required a large cecum which is a portion of the gut that houses bacteria that can help break down the plant tissue and cellulose. He also speculated that our ancestors turned to a fruit based diet that was easier to digest and the large cecum was no longer as needed so it began to shrink. Good thinking Charles.

Scientists challenged Darwin’s idea and decided that the appendix has no purpose. Isn’t that just like scientist? They love to debate (Love you guys). However, for over a century, science has told us that the structure is made up of a particular type of tissue that belongs to the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system is a large part of our immune system.

I have included a link below if you want to read more on the possible function of the appendix. No worries though if you have had to have an appendectomy. There are many other things you can do to try to keep your immune system working. Taking a good Probiotic daily is a simple one.

Article Source: Science Daily
image courtesy of: farm5.static.flickr.com

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