The human brain is a marvel. This complex organ allows humans to experience consciousness and is, as some have described it, an amazing vessel of the universe trying to understand itself. This organ is so intricate that humans still only possess a limited understanding of it. We know that the brain consists of several parts, and different areas control different aspects of our bodies. So, what is the largest part of the brain?
We’ll show you the biggest piece of the brain, what it does, and a bit about the anatomy of this amazing organ.
The Function of the Brain?
The brain is responsible for just about every single process that happens in our body. It controls our motor skills, breathing, thought processes, and emotions, and it interprets information from all of our sensory organs.
Put simply, the brain is the command center for all the other body systems. The brain and spinal cord make up the central nervous system, also known as the CNS. However, the brain is not a single homogenous blob that does everything. Certain parts of this organ are responsible for specific tasks.
Let’s take a closer look at the parts of the brain, along with a small breakdown of different portions of each part.
What Is the Largest Part of the Brain?
The cerebrum is the largest part of the brain. The cerebrum is the front of the organ, and it is what most people picture when they think of the organ. This part of the brain is the wrinkly gray matter and the white matter below it. This portion of the brain makes up 80%-85% of the entire organ.
The cerebrum is further divided into two hemispheres, and they are joined by the corpus callosum. The cerebrum in humans is one of the most impressive results of evolution. This part of the brain is responsible for speech, interesting sensory data, emotion, and more.
This is a basic overview of the cerebrum, and we’re going to expand on this part of the brain a little more below.
What Are the Parts of the Brain?
The brain can be broken down into three major parts called the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the brainstem. Each of these parts is responsible for certain functions in the human body. Let’s take a general look at what these portions of the brain do.
As we’ve already mentioned, the cerebrum is the largest part of the brain. The outer portion of this is called the cerebral cortex, and this has two hemispheres or halves. Each hemisphere generally controls the opposite side of the body. Thus, the left hemisphere controls activity on the right side of the body and vice versa.
Additionally, each hemisphere is more responsible for certain operations than the other. That does not necessarily mean that only one hemisphere of the brain is completely responsible for a function. The two hemispheres’ functions are greatly intertwined.
For example, the left hemisphere of the brain processes speed and language, and the right side interprets visual information. In some cases, the speech processing part of the brain is located in the right hemisphere.
The cerebellum is complex. Moreover, it is further broken down into lobes that receive and respond to sensory organs in the body. We’ll go into further detail about these in the next section.
The brain stem is the portion of the organ that connects the cerebrum and spinal cord. This part of the brain is broken down into the pons, midbrain, and medulla. The brainstem is responsible for many of the most important elements of living such as breathing, heart rate, and sleep among other functions.
The cerebellum is located behind the upper portion of the brain stem. This part of the brain is critical to a human’s balance, sense of equilibrium, and coordination of motor skills. The anatomy of the cerebellum is complex. This part of the organ is divided into several smaller sections.
What Are the Lobes of the Brain?
Each hemisphere of the cerebrum is divided into four different lobes. They are known as the frontal lobe, parietal lobe, occipital lobe, and temporal lobes. Look at the responsibilities of each lobe.
- Frontal lobe: the front portion of the brain responsible for planning, problem-solving, emotions, and impulse control.
- Parietal lobe: the middle top portion of the cerebral cortex responsible for spatial reasoning and the sensation of touch in the body while also contributing to speech comprehension.
- Occipital lobe: the back portion of the brain that contributes to the sense of vision,
- Temporal lobe: located on the side of the brain, this is responsible for speech, short-term memory, and more.
This brief and general overview of the different lobes of the brain shows the degree of specialization present in the brain. However, each section is much more complex than we have illustrated here.
What Is the Largest Organ in the Body?
Although the brain consumes a vast amount of energy compared to other organs, it is not the biggest. The largest organ in the body is the skin. This organ makes up about 15% of a person’s body weight, over twice the weight of the brain.
The skin protects the body from physical, heat, and UV radiation injuries. Moreover, it helps humans maintain their core temperature and synthesize vitamin D. However, an argument for a different larger organ in the body. Some claim that the skeleton is the largest organ in the body, while others believe that it’s the interstitium, the existence of which is still being debated.
Although the brain is not the largest organ, it is certainly the most important of them all. It is also highly specialized. The development of this organ is what separates humans from all other lifeforms on Earth. Our level of intelligence and consciousness is unsurpassed by other lifeforms on the planet.
The brain is far more complex than we have talked about in this article. However, information about its anatomy and purpose is widely available.
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Life science/Shutterstock.com
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