Weirdest animal bodyparts used in everyday things

Posted on Apr 28, 2013 in Us and them

Weirdest animal bodyparts used in everyday things

 

There’s more animals in your everyday life than you might know about -  how about the sheep extract in your shampoo?  Or the whale poo in your cologne?  The strange truth is that animals make an incredible contribution to many everyday things you’d never dream of being connected.

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FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH – SHEEP PLACENTA

While it might sound gross, sheep placenta is an extremely common additive in beauty products!  All mammals are born out of this skin, which acts as a nutrient-filled bubble while in the womb – and research has proven that the addition of sheep placenta in shampoo and creams gives renewed youth to both hair and skin. B-ewe-tiful!

 

VAT OUT OF SHELL – CHITIN

Chitin is an extremely useful substance used to help bring moisture to skin, stimulate vegetation growth, and even help your hair stick up a certain way. Where does it come from?  Shrimp shells and other shellfish!  As it’s an extremely popular (in some cases essential) ingredient in medicine and agriculture, it’s unlikely to stop being sourced for a long while yet.

 

DR. DRACULA – THE LEECH

It’s a weird but well-known fact that leeches, blood-sucking slug-like creatures, were often used in medieval times to ‘cure’ just about every ailment under the sun. While its usefulness on a stubbed toe is now pretty much disregarded, the leech is still actually being used in medicine today – as a handy natural suction device to prevent potentially fatal blood clots, and aiding in surgery!

 

FIGHTING FIRE WITH FEET – COW HOOVES

In possibly one of the strangest connections anyone could ever make,  a cow’s hooves are likely to be just as sought-after as its hide or its  meat – thanks to a chemical in their feet called keratin.  Keratin, believe it or not, is an essential ingredient in fire-fighting safety foam and can be found in extinguishers the world over!

 

EAU DE WHALE – AMBERGRIS

While there’s a lot of bizarre uses for animals past and present, there’s  probably none so revolting, nor as profitable, as Ambergris – which, to you and me, is whale vomit (though the theory has been floated that it’s more  likely to be whale poo – no one’s sure!).  This initially foul-smelling extract is actually used in perfume manufacture – its chemical construction helps scents last for longer!

 

MOO BALLS PLEASE – COW GUTS

Top tennis racquets aren’t all strung with plastic, or rubber – plenty of them benefit from preserved cattle gut.  Cow intestines (specifically small ones) are sliced up into thin strings and then coated, before being strung into  the ball-bashing batons of tennis players worldwide.  Due to their rubbery reliance and preservation, they’re brilliant at retaining their strength from even the most aggressive serve.”

 

SALMON UP THE BLOODSTREAM – PROTAMINE SULFATE

The drug Heparin, which prevents blood clots, often needs help stopping  – and that’s where Protamine sulfate comes in.  It stops a patient from bleeding too much, essentially – but where do the medicine boffins get their special ingredient from?  From the sperm of salmon, and occasionally other fish too.

 

SCALES ON THE TILES – FISH SKIN

Skin from fish caught for food, when not thrown away completely, is often recycled to use as leather clothing, handbag lining, jewellery  and more!  There are lots of designer brands that opt in to this scheme – and it’s said that there’s even a company making band aids from the scaly stuff!

 

WHAT’S SWINE IS YOURS – PIG VALVES

For years, heart surgery has included an option to replace human heart  valves with those of a pig’s!  This is called a tissue valve replacement, and it’s often seen as a viable choice over mechanical replacements due to them being biologically sound – however, they will normally only last  around ten years – and they’re often reserved as priority for older patients.

 

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