Serious Things You Need To Know … I think!

Feb 16, 2011 by

Serious Things You Need To Know … I think!











Did you know there are 25.4 millimeters in an inch? There are.

Knowing that set me off on a tangent the other day. I was at the Podiatrists having my toe nails trimmed. Being Diabetic, my doctor warns me constantly that I must take care of my feet as they can be a source of terrible consequence if I don’t. I know whereof she speaks. A dear diabetic friend and fellow Radio Control Airplane nut, didn’t take care of himself and a very slight injury turned into an artery blockage, gangrene and amputation of his right leg. All within the period of about two weeks time. He died two weeks after the amputation. I never learned if it was from further complications or if he just gave up as he told me he didn’t want to drag around in a wheel chair or with a wooden leg. I suspect he just gave up.

Back to my visit at the Podiatrists, the very pretty young lady who trims my toe nails was talking about other things when I ask her, “How much does a toe nail grow in a day?”

She answered, “I don’t know how much they grow in a day but the average person’s nails grow about a millimeter a week.”

“A millimeter a week eh”, I thought to myself. I must look this up on the internet. I did and that led to this very interesting fact. If my nails grow at the rate of a millimeter a week, I have twenty nails (fingers and toes), that would be 20 millimeters of nail growth a week multiplied by 52 weeks and I grow 1040 millimeters of nails a year. Divide 1040 by 25.4 and that tells us that I grow 40.9448 inches of nails a year…Interested yet? Can you guess where I’m going with this? If I, just one person can grow roughly 41 inches of nails a year (That’s three feet, three inches) can you just imagine how much of the stuff is grown, say in California over a year’s period of time?

There are 36 million nine hundred sixty one thousand, six hundred sixty four people living in California according to the 2010 U. S. Census. Okay, multiply 41 inches by 36,900,000. (I rounded off for nail biters and kids, and those with less than ten fingers or toes or both) and you have the amazing fact that in one year, 1,512,900,000 inches of nails are grown, right here in productive California. Yes, that’s over 1.5 Billion inches! Here’s the mind blower of all of this valuable information…Are you ready for this??? 126,075,000 feet of finger and toe nails are generated each year by just the State of California alone…That’s a lot of finger and toe nails to trim and after they’re trimmed, where do they go?

Ok you say, how about the whole U. S. Well there’s currently 308,000,000 (again rounding off for those less fortunate than those of us with ten fingers and ten toes…Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt and round it off to an even 300,000,000 nail growers in the U. S.

clipping toenailsWow, go figure…(That’s what I have to do as my calculator won’t go that high so gimme a minute……………each dot is a minute.) If my long forgotten multiplication abilities are correct, every single year in the U.S. 12,300,000,000 inches of nails are grown. Divide that by 12 and you have a whopping 1,025,000,000 feet of fingernails and toenails headed for the trash heap. Think of it another way, there’s 5240 feet in a mile. Divide that into 1,025,000,000 and you have 195,610.687 miles of discarded nails a year here in the U. S.

The population of the world is nearly 7 billion but I don’t even want to go there so I began to wonder about how much hair is grown in the aforementioned (and some unmentionable) places but there are too many bald headed people out there to even begin to think about that. Besides why worry about how much hair is grown when there are other interesting facts to be discerned.

Like if cattle are the world’s greatest producers of air polluting methane gas (when they belch up their cud), how many cow pies are lying about the prairies, pastures and backyards of moo owners in California, America and sheesh, the world???

I’ve got to get a bigger calculator…

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  1. Eve forcinel

    This is a serious subject , especially but not limited to diabetics. Feet and toes are most important and the least taken in account by some. It is amazing how many other problems occur from neglecting the circulation and comfort of our feet and toes. But you already know this. Interesting and informative but still distinctive style that is exclusively John Strobel The Third.

  2. Robert; I wish I knew the answer to your query, I think I read somewhere that finger and toenails are leftovers from our tree dwelling days when they were useful to hang onto limbs…
    Anonymous: I didn’t mention it because I didn’t know that mega doses of
    Calcium are taken for nail growth. See how much you can learn by being dumb…
    Bill; I had that impressed upon my by my Podiatrist. Diabetics must be very careful not to injure their feet. The average diabetic’s circulation in their lower extrematies is poor and a fresh blood supply is very necessary to heal a wound. I had a small blood blister on my middle toe and you would have thought there was a “Code Blue” situation from the reaction of the Podiatrist. However, soaking it for four days in a solution of Epsom Salts and hot water did the trick. No further problems so I guess I dodged the bullet on this one but it just goes to show you how important it is to know your body and its limitations…
    Thank you all for your comments…I learn something new each time I read them…JWSIII

  3. The only thing I need to know is..”Why is it there, and WHAT is it doing?’

  4. Anonymous User via Facebook

    He didn’t account for those who take mega doses of calcium a day. Ha!

  5. William (Bill) J. Nelson

    Very interesting article. As Linda is diabetic, both she and I are very aware of the dire consequences even the slightest foot injury can cause.