Bodily Defenses Image Map

You would be sick all the time if your body did not have ways to detoxify all the bad things that you breathe, drink, eat, and get on your skin. In fact, you could not even live. The world is full of bad chemicals, even without man-made pollution.

But toxins would still be a problem even if we lived in a clean environment. Our own body makes toxic chemicals.  For example, did you know that one product the body makes as a by-product of its normal chemical reactions is ethyl alcohol (the kind found in alcoholic drinks)? And the body changes alcohol into an even more toxic compound, acetaldehyde!

Have you heard all the advertisements for Vitamin E and C as substances needed to combat free radicals? Free radicals are normal chemical breakdown products and they are very toxic. Sometimes, these radicals cause cancer and contribute to aging.

See these sites for more information:

Vitamins and free radicals

Free radicals and aging


Introduction | Why It Matters | How We Find Out | What We Know | Story Time
Common Hazards | Activities | Self-Study Game | Teachers Pages | Standards (TEKS)


Peer Curriculum | Organ Systems Home Page | Communication Exercises
Copyright 2001-2003
Web Site Privacy Statement