The process of cellular respiration is a fascinating one. Moreover, as you are going to discover through this cellular respiration definition, the process is also a pretty crucial one. In terms of how we live and quite simply exist, there is no question that cellular respiration is extremely crucial. When it comes to understanding just how important all of this is, there are several facts about cellular respiration that you are going to want to keep in mind.
1. Quite Frankly, It’s How Cells Survive
To begin with, let’s talk about our cells. We understand that our body is full of them. At the same time, we understand that these cells need energy, in order to both function and survive. However, what we may not understand is where that energy comes from. It comes from a crucial process. This process is known as cellular respiration.
2. Most Organisms Need Cellular Respiration To Survive
As you can probably imagine from the definition of cellular respiration mentioned above, this is a process that is pretty important to an awful lot of different organisms. Obviously, this is something that we need to survive. At the same time, you will want to keep in mind that just about all organisms need the process of cellular respiration to survive.
3. Oxygen Plays A Vital Role
It may or may not surprise you to know that when it comes to the process of cellular respiration, oxygen plays a pretty important role in the whole thing. It is going to be oxygen that works to cut down your sugar glucose into something whose energy can be stored within ATP (adenosine triphosphate) molecules. Keep in mind that until the energy is stored with the ATP molecules, the body of the organism will not have the ability to use that energy.
4. Why Is ATP So Important?
It might be a good idea to appreciate why it is so important that this energy make its way over to the molecules that exist within ATP. In terms of just about every activity we have come to associate with the existence of your cells, ATP is going to be there to play a role in the fact that the cells of your body can do pretty much anything. Growing, dividing, and even replacing worn-out old cell parts are all things that rely on ATP to even occur. Your cells rely on ATP for just about everything, so that means your cells rely on the process of cellular respiration.
5. Examples Of What Cellular Respiration Facilitates
At this point, you should have a pretty clear appreciation for what cellular respiration makes possible. Taking these thoughts a little further, try to think of specific actions or activities that rely on cellular respiration to be possible. Obviously, that list will never, ever end. From reading this sentence, to crossing the street, to the act of an amoeba to make its way over to some food, just about everything relies on cellular respiration. Try to think of some examples on your own.
6. The Two Crucial Ingredients For Cellular Respiration
When it comes to how the process of cellular respiration is even possible, there are two key ingredients that you are going to want to appreciate. We are talking about glucose and oxygen. With oxygen, we already touched on why it’s so important to this process. With glucose, there are a variety of ways in which it can be brought into the process of cellular respiration. For example, plants and similar items get the glucose they need through that process known as photosynthesis. Animals can get their glucose by eating plants.
7. A Little More About Oxygen
There is a little more about the relationship between oxygen and cellular respiration that you are going to want to keep in mind. Obviously, we can find oxygen in the very air we are breathing. Oxygen can also be found dissolved in water. This water can be diffused into the cells, which is essentially how plants get what they need on that front. With more complex animals, such as human beings, the oxygen can be absorbed through inhalation. This is why it’s important to stay hydrated!
8. Aerobic Respiration
If someone also brings up the subject of aerobic respiration, relax. They are still talking about cellular respiration.
9. How Much Glucose Makes It Over?
One of the interesting things about the role of glucose in cellular respiration is how much of the energy actually makes it over. Approximately forty percent of the energy we get from glucose will make its way over to ATP. The remainder of your energy will be released to the rest of your body as heat. This is actually how warm-blooded organisms maintain body temp.
10. Unable To Produce
Due to one factor or another, some organisms cannot produce ATP with the cellular respiration concept.