From the get go, you can get an idea about what biochemistry entails by separating the prefix from the main word: “bio” + “chemistry”. Biology is the study of the living organisms and the processes that occur within living systems. Chemistry is the study of matter and how changes take place. Thus, biochemistry is the study of the changes in material composition that take place within the living beings and the processes that lead to such changes. Biochemistry also tries to understand the effects that these changes might cause by monitoring how the living systems respond to these changes.
The Chemical Human Body
Human body is composed of several chemical substances which are present in fixed amounts and it is necessary for the amounts to be maintained for the proper functioning of the human body. The body reacts according to some triggers and these triggers are usually caused by chemical imbalances. The brain sends out instructions to various parts of the body and these signals are electric in nature. In order to carry them from one station to the other across the body, the body makes use of a chemical that makes your common salt: sodium. Sodium has only one electron in its outermost or valence shell. This electron can easily be removed from the sodium atom and be free to conduct electricity or electric signals. So whenever there is a need to transfer electric signals, the body makes use of sodium to cause an imbalance and there is a potential created across which the signals move.
Chemical help needed
The body makes use of various other chemicals in the same way. Our body is approximately composed seventy percent of water which is needed by our body for various chemical processes that occur inside us. If water falls below the optimal percentage, your body is strained to carry out reactions in the absence of an aqueous medium. There are certain molecules which have been identified to play a very important role in proper functioning of the body. These are called biomolecules and form a very interesting and rigorously researched part of the biochemistry. Carbohydrates provide energy to your body and that is why you are encouraged to include them in your daily diet. Lipids are basically fats and fatty acids. These are also required to be present in some of your medicines so that the chemicals inside the medicine can be transported to the body part where they are wanted. Proteins perform very complex roles in living systems and are composed of even smaller chemical molecules. Nucleic acids are the biomolecules that make structures inside your body such as your DNA.
Importance of biochemistry
Long before the modern principles and scientific rigor took hold in understanding the way that the world around us works, it was thought that living systems have some “vital” force. Biochemistry helps us understand that his vital force is nothing but the interplay of chemicals with the living system. Biochemistry helps us by revealing the causes and results of this magical interaction.