GED Science: Energy from Respiration

For the GED Science Test, you should know that respiration is a process in plants and animals to create energy. So those are your GED vocabulary words: respiration and energy.

I watched a bunch of YouTube videos on respiration to find the most clear, visual explanation for you. The first minute of this video is basically all you need to know about respiration for the GED Science Test:

One minute too long? Here’s the 30 second version:

There are two parts to respiration in the human body. But it’s really all part of the same process.

1. Breathing in and out: exchanging oxygen and carbon dioxide. This is biology. Humans breathe in oxygen (and a lot of other things) and we breathe out carbon dioxide (and a lot of other things). Try just paying attention for your breathing for a few minutes. Go on, take some deep breaths. It will help you focus. What is going on? This is your respiratory system at work. Air is coming in and out of your lungs. That allows the oxygen from the air to get into your blood stream, then into the cells in your muscles and your brain.

2. Cellular respiration: once the oxygen gets into your cells, then it starts a chemical process. So now we’re in chemistry instead of biology. The oxygen interacts with glucose, which comes from food. So your glucose from eating and your oxygen from breathing recombine to create carbon dioxide, water, and ENERGY! Then your blood stream brings the carbon dioxide from the cells, back to your lungs, and you breathe it out.

So the respiratory system (think of your lungs) brings oxygen in and carbon dioxide out of your body. Those chemicals from air are used in the chemical process of cellular respiration, which creates ENERGY. And you are using that energy to read and understand this post right now! Good work. Now let’s check if you understand it:

Got it? That’s all you need to know about respiration for the GED Science Test. However, if you want to get a job or a degree in the health sciences you should probably understand respiration in more detail. If that’s the case, I suggest you check out these introductory videos on cellular respiration:

One last unrelated comment: guys are always explaining the science in these popular videos I found. What’s up with that? The one with the girl has her playing the role of the confused student. So is it a big surprise that we have trouble getting girls and women to join scientific fields if our public role models are men? There’s no reason women can’t be the ones explaining advanced scientific concepts.


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