5 brainiac brain facts (illustrated by TED-Ed GIFs)


The brain is an incredible organ; its complex networks are responsible for everything from determining attraction to detecting pain. It’s also extremely GIF-able. Enjoy these five brain facts, coupled with beautifully animated GIFs from some of TED-Ed’s favorite animators.


1. We like to think of romantic feelings as spontaneous and indescribable things that come from the heart. But it’s actually your brain running a complex series of calculations within a matter of seconds that’s responsible for determining attraction.

From the TED-Ed Lesson The science of attraction


2. Playing an instrument is the brain’s equivalent of a full-body workout. As you play, your brain simultaneously processes different information in intricate, interrelated, and astonishingly fast sequences.

From the TED-Ed Lesson How playing an instrument benefits your brain


3. The human brain consumes an astounding 3.4 x 10^21 ATP molecules per minute, making it a legitimate energy hog!

From the TED-Ed Lesson What percentage of your brain do you use?


4. As we grow, we install pain detectors in most areas of our body. Just like all nerve cells, these detectors conduct electrical signals, sending information from wherever they’re located back to your brain. But, unlike other nerve cells, nociceptors only fire if something happens that could cause or is causing damage.

From the TED-Ed Lesson How do pain relievers work?


5. On a per weight basis, humans pack in more neurons than any other species. That’s what makes us so smart!

From the TED-Ed Lesson What percentage of your brain do you use?



  1. Andy Rea

    I love them! I used one of them for our family homeschool website. For next week’s lesson plan actually. A little picture to inspire their learning. Thank you TED for these GIFs

  2. JZA

    Instruments and other activities that require true multi tasking to properly conduct would have the same effect

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