by Lidija Drakulic

The most interesting facts about human brain? Nerve impulses travel as fast as 170 miles per hour to and from the brain.

The speed in which our nerve endings are able to relay messages to our brain is the reason why we can react promptly to things around us, or if we suddenly find ourselves in pain. These messages then send out instructions to the rest of the body. The speed of nerve impulses varies in different versions of the neuron.

The fastest impulses travel at about 250 miles per hours. The axon has to be well insulated for the impulse to travel quickly. This utilizes huge amounts of energy. Usually, these things are only used for situations that need to transfer information urgently, such as when you burn your fingers.

The brain needs to get the messages as soon as possible, so that you can withdraw your body when it is in pain or harm’s way. This makes our reaction faster than a formula one car. However, this also means that our perception of time is relative. What feels like an instant reaction to us would appear extremely slow from the perspective of another species.

Smaller creatures have shorter lengths of neural paths. These paths link the nerves to our brains. This also means that their reactions are quicker than ours. The body of a cockroach is almost entirely made up of neural matter. This gives it the ability to react with a speed that we are unable to comprehend as humans.