Life Processes- An Insight into different Processes of Living Beings

To make a yarn, cotton has to go through various processes and machines and in the end of these processes, we get a finished product and its by-products. As same as that process, a living being has to go through many processes to survive. These processes are called Life Processes. Life Processes include Nutrition, Respiration, Transportation and Excretion.

  • Nutrition

The process of Nutrition helps in providing or obtaining the food for survival and growth of living beings. This process is of 2 types :– Autotrophic and Heterotrophic.

Autotrophic Nutrition: It is a process of producing organic nutrients from organic substances I.e. by the process of Photosynthesis Equation-  6CO2 + 6H2O +Sunlight -> C6H12O6 + 6O2. This process takes place in Plants.

Heterotrophic Nutrition: It is a process of obtaining organic nutrients by feeding on other living things. This process is also of 3 types:

1.Saprophytic (obtaining food from the dead or decaying matter e.g. Fungi, Bacteria, etc.).

2.Parasitic (obtaining food from host organism without killing it e.g. lice, tapeworms, etc.).

3.Holozoic (they eat solid food by ingesting it, which is then digested and absorbed into their bodies e.g. Humans, Animals and Insectivorous plants).

The Human Digestive System (part of Holozoic Heterotrophic Nutrition)

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The process of human digestion start from Mouth where salivary amylase is present to digest starch in food. Then the food travels to Stomach where Gastric Juice helps to digest protein. Then Liver produces Bile juice which helps in Emulsification (process of breaking down big molecules of food into small molecules). From there, the food travels to Pancreas (Pancreatic Juice has enzymes of Carbohydrates, Proteins and Fats) and reaches to Small Intestine, where the process of digestion gets completed.

The process of Digestion is to break down the complex substances of food into simple substances.

Respiration

A process of intake of Oxygen and production of energy is called Respiration. Respiration is of 2 types:–Aerobic Respiration and Anaerobic Respiration.

Aerobic Respiration: This process takes place in the presence of Oxygen. It’s by-products are Carbon Dioxide, Steam (H2O) and Energy.

Anaerobic Respiration: This process takes place in the absence of Oxygen. It’s by-products are Lactic Acid and Energy.

Respiration takes place in a Cell. First Glucose enters in Cytoplasm of cell where (by chemical reactions) it gets converted into Pyruvate. This Pyruvate breaks down in 3 different pathways I.e. in absence of Oxygen, in lack of Oxygen and in presence of Oxygen.

The Human Respiratory System

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First, air enters in the body through Nostrils, then Nasal Cavity purifies and humidifies the air. Epiglottis keeps food from entering the ‘airways’ and Larynx lets the purified air pass through speech production. Then Trachea channels the air toward the left and right Bronchi. Left Primary Bronchus and Right Primary Bronchus allow the air to enter the left and right lung. Ribs protect the respiratory organs and Intercostal Muscles help them in moving while breathing. Bronchioles lets air reach the Alveoli. Alveoli is a site for Oxygen-Carbon Dioxide exchange. Then lungs carry out Oxygen-Carbon Dioxide exchange. During this carrying-out process, Diaphragm helps the lungs to pump.

Transportation 

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Transportation is a process of moving any substance, where water is required to move nutrients from one place to another. In Human Body, blood helps in moving of nutrients. The composition of blood is – Plasma (55%), White Blood cells and Platelets (4%) and Red Blood Cells (41%).

The function of WBC and Platelets is to increase Immunity and blood clotting, whereas the function of RBC is the transportation of Respiratory Gases. Heart is responsible for this transportation process in human body.

Excretion

Excretion is the process of removal of waste products (nitrogenous waste mainly) from the body.

The parts of Human Body Excretion System:-

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1.Kidney- It produces Urine.

2.Ureter- It transports Urine towards Urinary Bladder.

3.Urinary Bladder- It temporarily stores Urine.

4.Urethra- It transports Urine out of body.

Excretion Products of Plants:-

1.Oxygen (through Photosynthesis)

2.Carbon Dioxide (through Respiration)

3.Excess Water (through transportation)

4.Resins, Gums, etc. (other waste products)

These processes are responsible for existence of life on earth. From Nutrition to Excretion, each and every process has a significant role and non execution of any one process is a threat to living beings.

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