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Why Is Your Brain in Your Head?

We all know that our brain is in our head – that much is a given. But have you ever wondered why?

It all started about 550 million years ago, back when animals didn’t have brains or heads or anything really going for them. These were known as radial animals and were slightly two-dimensional looking (a bit like a star fish).

As animals evolved they began to have a new dimension to play with – a front and rear to the body (or a head and tail to you and me). These newly evolved animals were known as bilateral animals and all used the same set of genes to control how the body was organised in this new way. These genes are known as hox genes and clustered on the chromosome (a structure of all living cells, FYI) in the same order as the parts of the body they organised.

Bilateral animals continued to evolve with their senses and as such they began to develop eyes and noses. As these sense receptors became increasingly powerful so did the brains that processed this information. As a result of this they began to protect these brains by wrapping them in hardened skulls – and as we evolved from animals this form of protection remained.

The video below explains the evolution of the brain in much more detail and after watching it you’ll be blowing your science teachers own brains with your knowledge on the subject!

Bizarre and brilliant facts about the brain

• Your brain keeps developing until you’re in your late forties.

• Your brain uses up 20% of the oxygen and blood in your body.

• When you’re awake your brain produces enough electricity to power a small light bulb.

• A grand total of 60% of your brain is fat, and dieting could force your brain to eat itself.

• Long-term use of your mobile phone increases the risk of brain tumours.

• Half of your brain could be removed and there would be no apparent effect to your personality or memory.

(Facts from