Metabolism is all the chemical changes that occur in the body (i.e. Saladin, 2017, p.55). This mechanism produces excretion, which is waste created as a byproduct from the metabolism reaction. Metabolism is enabled by a protein known as an enzyme, which catalyze all biological reactions. (Molnar, C., 2019) Metabolism are made up by two reactions, catabolism and anabolism. This process is cooperative work, where these reactions ensue continuously.
For example, catabolism is an exergonic, or energy releasing, reaction. In simpler terms, this means larger molecules breaks into smaller molecules, also known as decomposition reaction (i.e. Saladin, 2017, p.55). This can also breakdown covalent bonds. These covalent bonds are strong bonds, and are not usually broken in biological conditions, such as temperature and pressure. Our digestive system uses enzymes that breaks down our food into glucose, which can be further broken down in our cells into carbon dioxide, water, and energy.
Anabolism can feed off the energy that catabolism releases, due to this reaction requiring energy input. This is an energy storing synthesis reaction, also known as endergonic, where multiple smaller molecules join together to form a larger molecule (i.e. Saladin, 2017, p.55). Proteins are formed using this reaction, where amino acids combine to create a protein. As well as DNA, which is formed by molecules called nucleotides.
A great tool to help memorize this information is that catabolism reminds me of “KUH-BOOM”, in which this can be associated with reactions that are exploding into small pieces. On the other hand, anabolism is memorized by the words “analyze and regroup” in order to form a plan. Which is similarly how anabolism work, by using energy, smaller molecules combine to form large ones.
Metabolism is an essential topic because it used in everyday life. The body uses this in order to create energy to work. It can create kinetic energy, thermal energy, chemical energy, etc., which makes life possible. In our digestive system, it is crucial to have beneficial eating and exercising habits because the foods we digest can affect our metabolism speed and efficiency, as well as age slowing down metabolism.
Saladin, K. (2017). Anatomy & Physiology The Unit of Form and Function. New York: McGraw Hill Education.
Molnar, C., & Gair, J. (2019, May 1). Concepts of Biology – 1st Canadian Edition. Retrieved from https://opentextbc.ca/biology/chapter/4-1-energy-and-metabolism/.
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