General Question

flo's avatar

What are all the human waste products, not just the 3 or 4 obvious ones?

Asked by flo (7794 points ) August 8th, 2014

Edited to add:
Three of the obvious ones are urine, excrement, sweat. What are the rest? For example:
http://idahoptv.org/dialogue4kids/season11/body_waste/facts.cfm
Is that the complete list? I don’t know if pus counts, since that is only when something is wrong.

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29 Answers

talljasperman's avatar

Sleep in the eye, exhaled breath, menstrual fluid, mucus, skin flakes, semen and sperm, spit.

hearkat's avatar

Carbon dioxide.

majorrich's avatar

Ear Wax

majorrich's avatar

Methane, Nitrogen (fart gas)

talljasperman's avatar

Noise pollution.

dxs's avatar

Hair and nails—these are dead skin cells.

CWOTUS's avatar

water vapor

syz's avatar

Epithelial cells. Sweat, Breast Milk, Cerumen, Feces, Chyme, Bile, Vomit, Aqueous Humour, Sebum, Cowper’s Fluid, Blood or Plasma, Semen, Saliva, Female Ejaculate, Serum, Urine.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

@syz covered it all except flatus! Oh, just noticed somebody else mentioned it!!

whitenoise's avatar

Dead bodies.

LuckyGuy's avatar

Waste heat. .A typical human puts out heat at a rate of 100 Watts, for a total of 2.4 kWhr per day. That is equivalent to about $0.30 worth of electricity.

cazzie's avatar

Aborted fetuses, amputated limbs, removed organs and tumors… (ever wonder what happened to that appendix or spleen or gall bladder?)

Response moderated (Off-Topic)
dxs's avatar

@syz I don’t think all of those things are considered “waste”, though. Breast milk? Precum? Blood? Semen?

Response moderated (Off-Topic)
Kardamom's avatar

Haven’t yet read the other responses. Did anyone yet mention snot or loogies?

talljasperman's avatar

@Kardamom I did first question. Mucas and spit

flo's avatar

Thanks you all. A few terms I never knew there, like smegma.
What is the term for peeling skin by the way?

flo's avatar

But I don’t know if I agree with “Aborted fetuses, amputated limbs, removed organs and tumors” and “dead bodies”

Most out of the box answer has to be @LuckyGuy‘s Waste heat

cazzie's avatar

Where I live, body heat is most essentially NOT a waste product, but made the most of during the cold, dark months.

@flo why don’t you think aborted fetuses, amputated limbs, removed organs and tumours are not waste products?

majorrich's avatar

Some heat is exhausted with the flatus. Then it becomes waste

cazzie's avatar

@majorrich haven’t you heard of a ‘Dutch Oven’?

majorrich's avatar

Only the kind we take camping. I’ve farted whilest wearing a wetsuit, which is quite an experience. I imagine it would make warm air in many layers of insulation. Would the latter be what you refer to?

flo's avatar

@cazzie That is just one more thing I can’t explain right now. It just feels that way to me.

flo's avatar

@cazzie
Re. “Where I live, body heat is most essentially NOT a waste product, but made the most of during the cold, dark months.” here is a link.
http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-11433162

cazzie's avatar

That isn’t body heat. That is gas generated from shit and food waste. And it is a good idea. They have been tapping landfills for gas for a long time.
http://biomassmagazine.com/articles/2220/landfill-gas-projects-generate-electricity-compressed-natural-gas

flo's avatar

Is your logic that if it (body heat in cold weather) can be made use of, then it can’t be waste product? That is why I posted that link.

Uberwench's avatar

I would say the list is: carbon dioxide, methane, urine, fecal matter, cerumen (earwax), sweat, and sputum. I would not count vomit, tears, or pus because I understand waste products to be the byproducts of normal metabolic processes. None of these things are expelled as the result of normal processes, though.

Vomit isn’t a byproduct so much as what we call the mix of stuff that comes out when we get sick. Lacrimal fluid (tears) stays on the eye and returns to the body when all is normal. Pus is maybe a borderline case. Dead leucocytes are part of the natural healing process, but healing might not count as a normal metabolic process (more of a special metabolic process). I guess I could go either way on that one.

I definitely wouldn’t count semen or vaginal fluid because they aren’t byproducts. There the main product themselves. They get expelled, but that’s part of their function. They’re not expelled because they are leftovers. Also, thinking of semen and vaginal fluid as waste products seems like it could inadvertently lead to some pretty sex-negative feelings. It’s that kind of idea that makes people think sex is gross, especially oral sex. And I’m just not down with not going down.

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