The Brain is the most important organ in our body and one that we, quite often, take for granted. It is the command center for absolutely every mental and physical function. I am able to type this blog post because a group of neurons in my brain are putting words together into ideas that hopefully make sense. Some other neurons simultaneously break the words down into letters and send electrical and chemical signals to my fingers to type the appropriate keys on this keyboard. The human body is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.
May is Brain Cancer Awareness month and a message that I am happy to highlight on this blog. Brain Cancer is one of the rarest forms of cancer so it doesn’t get the awareness it deserves. I have a friend from college, Alex Moore, who through his own battle with this disease has educated me on the need for more attention and funding.
He has also directed me towards Lumosity.com which is a website designed to improve your brain function and has helped me make strides in my own fight against “chemo brain”. I imagine it is useful for anyone wanting to exercise this valuable asset.
A few interesting Brain Facts (For the full list go here)
- The human brain weighs 3 lbs
- There are no pain receptors in the brain so it literally feels no pain
- There are 100,000 miles of blood vessels in the brain
- The human brain has about 100 billion neurons, a stack of 100 billion pieces of paper would be about 5000 miles high.
- Your brain uses 20% of the oxygen and 20% of the blood circulating in your body
- Excessive stress has shown to alter brain cells, brain structure and function
- You can’t tickle yourself because your brain can distinguish between unexpected external touch and your own touch
Fascinating right? Here are a few specific suggestions from Alex on how you can help spread awareness on this topic:
- An easy thing would be to sign this petition to create a brain cancer awareness postage stamp here. https://secure2.convio.net/bts/site/SPageServer?pagename=AwarenessStampPetition
- You can do something really cool on Twitter. If you Follow @EndBrainCancer…and retweet one of their tweets using hashtag #TuneIn2GBM Novocure will donate $5 to the Chris Elliott Fund (a charity that helps patients and families with GBM diagnosis and supports brain cancer research)
- You can friend Alexander Moore on Facebook…you can then take a picture of yourself wearing grey and tag him (or tag me and I’ll tag him )…mentioning that you’re doing it for brain cancer awareness month. This actually really huge because if you do the math it will quickly reach thousands of people
- Go like the Operation: ABC “Annihilate Brain Cancer” page. It lists events around the country and tries to give a unified voice to the brain cancer family. (Oh yeah, they’re a family. You need everyone you can get to help fight this beast.)
- Find a local Brain Tumor run and sign up for it
- Braintumor.org and abc2.org are the most comprehensive websites out there about brain tumor advocacy and awareness and research.
I think it is important to highlight these things…because cancer is a sneaky disease and you never know when it might become personal.