Lysosome Definition for Kids

Lysosome Definition for Kids


The human body is a very interesting thing to study because it is filled with millions of tiny cells and organisms that help to keep us healthy. All of the cells that are running through your body right now have important jobs to do and when they fail at their job, it can result in the body getting sick and being unable to absorb the nutrients that you need to stay healthy. Lysosomes are one of the most important types of cells that you’ll find inside of your body because they have very important jobs to do to make sure your body is working at its best. Below are some key facts to know about lysosomes.

1. What Do Lysosomes Do?

The most important thing to know about these cells is that they help your body to absorb all of the nutrition that you get from the foods that you eat on a regular basis. This helps to prevent your body from lacking essential vitamins and minerals like vitamin C and proteins. Without vitamin C your body’s immune system can get severely damaged, which will result in getting very sick. One of the most commonly known illnesses that happen because of a vitamin C deficiency is scurvy. Lysosomes work with the food that gets into your stomach so that it can easily be digested and transported through your body.

2. Lysosomes Protect the Body

Just like the other cells that you have in your system, lysosomes are responsible for protecting your body against illnesses. Not only do they spend time eating all of the food that you eat to make your body healthier, but they also eat bad bacteria and viruses that could destroy the other lysosomes and cell bodies that you have in your system. All of these foreign things that could make you sick will easily be destroyed.

3. Helping Your Metabolism

Your metabolism is one of the most important parts of your body because it is designed to make sure that you maintain a healthy weight and have enough energy to get through the day. As you eat food, your metabolism works to break down all of the particles and convert them into energy pockets that your body absorbs and uses to keep you awake during the day. Without healthy lysosomes, your body won’t be able to absorb the food and in turn, you won’t have enough energy. This is why many people who have damaged lysosomes suffer from diseases where their metabolism stops working entirely. This could result in gaining a lot of weight over a short period of time and other symptoms of bad illnesses.

4. Garbage Disposals of the Body

Another way that you can look at lysosomes is as the mini garbage disposals that you have in your body. Much like you would put leftover food down the garbage disposal and have it break it down so it can be turned to compost, the lysosomes do the same thing. With all of the waste that is created by the other cells in the body, the lysosomes help to get rid of it by consuming it and destroying it. Many scientists refer to these unique cells as “suicide sacs” because they get rid of the leftover unimportant content.

5. The Size of Lysosomes

Most cells in your body will have a particular shape and size, but lysosomes come in many different sizes. They are spherical but they can be extremely small or up to 3 times as big as the smallest ones. Depending on the job that they are assigned to, their size will differ.

6. What Do Lysosomes Break Down?

There are specific parts of the food that your lysosomes will break down in order to either remove it from your body or to give it to other important areas so it can be used. Lysosomes love to break down proteins, lipids (fats), carbohydrates, and nucleic acids. You might see them as tiny little stomachs floating around in your system that help to break down essential nutrients.

7. Similar to Fungi

Another cool fact about lysosomes is that they are made of the same components that you would typically find in fungi, even though different types of fungi aren’t considered to be lysosomes. They both have vacuoles that have the same purpose, but lysosomes are a newer discovery than fungi.

When it comes to making sure that your body has enough nutrients and support to be healthy, your lysosomes are incredibly important. From making sure that all of the bad waste is taken out of your system to giving your body enough energy to play sports and finish your schoolwork before bedtime, they’re very important. Without healthy lysosomes you might deal with different dangerous medical illnesses that will need the help of your doctor.