ERIC Number: EJ1044201
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Nov
Abstractor: As Provided
Metabolic Rate M[superscript 0.75] in Human Beings
Agrawal. D. C.
Physics Education, v49 n6 p685-688 Nov 2014
Human beings consume energy every day. Even at rest, energy is still needed for the working of the internal organs. This is achieved by the metabolism of consumed food in the presence of inhaled oxygen. During the resting state this is called the maintenance rate, and follows the mouse-to-elephant formula, P[subscript met] = 70M[superscript 0.75] kcal per day. Here, "M" is the body mass of the subject in kilograms. The heat generated in metabolism is lost through the body surface of the subject, so the metabolic rate should also be proportional to the body surface area. In other words, the body surface area in the case of a human being must also depend on M[superscript 0.75]. The present paper examines this issue by finding a relationship between human body surface area and its mass through a very simple model that can be easily understood and verified by physics students, who can also compare it with all the expressions for body surface area available in the literature. This will build confidence in the students that the heat generated from metabolism in fact dissipates through the surface of the body.
Descriptors: Human Body, Metabolism, Energy, Food, Heat, Correlation, Physics, Science Instruction, Body Composition, Scientific Concepts, Body Weight, Body Height, College Science
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A