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Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D.

How Much Are the Elements in Your Body Worth?

By February 6, 2011

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Have you ever wondered how much the elements in your body are worth? First, let's take a look at the elements from which you are made. Your body is approximately:
  • 65% Oxygen
  • 18% Carbon
  • 10% Hydrogen
  • 3% Nitrogen
  • 1.5% Calcium
  • 1% Phosphorous
  • 0.35% Potassium
  • 0.25% Sulfur
  • 0.15% Sodium
  • 0.15% Chlorine
  • 0.05% Magnesium
  • 0.0004% Iron
  • 0.00004% Iodine
Your body contains trace amounts of other elements, such as silicon, manganese, fluorine, copper, zinc, arsenic and aluminum. What is the going rate for a body's worth of these elements? One US dollar! Are you surprised?

Let's see if we can bump the price up a bit. If you're looking to make a buck with your bod, your best bet would be to sell individual organs, but since that's illegal, an alternative might be to tan your hide for use as leather. Your skin would be worth about $3.50 if it were sold at the price of a cowhide, which runs around $0.25 per square foot. So, if you take a dollar's worth of elements plus the value of your skin, you might be able to get $4.50, which we'll round up to $5, so you'll feel better about your chemical value.

Chemical Composition of the Body | Which Element Are You?

Comments

February 10, 2011 at 1:27 pm
(1) Zcah says:

This site really helped :)

February 14, 2011 at 4:10 am
(2) chemgirl says:

LOL :)
So, we’re each worth $5…

February 14, 2011 at 9:29 am
(3) shakera crooks says:

i love this site it is really interested i have learn a lot about chem and how the body works thx for creating this site guys god bless.

February 14, 2011 at 9:38 am
(4) Don says:

The elements in the body may not be worth much, but we are a combination of many complex chemicals. In the 1980s, a chemist calculated that the compounds in the human body were worth more than $6 million. That was over twenty years ago, so we are now worth even more.

February 15, 2011 at 5:15 am
(5) Mastermind99 says:

I <3 about.com

February 16, 2011 at 7:16 pm
(6) The MaD HaCkER says:

So he is really not a waste of skin, The skin is the most valuable part. ;)

February 17, 2011 at 9:27 am
(7) khamdi says:

i don’t think so, our body is uncountable worth, imagine you got an injury, or sick, every body will do everything to get his healthy back, he does not care how much money will spent.

February 22, 2011 at 1:47 pm
(8) Hafiz Arshad says:

Realy knowledgeful Blog to learn chemistry applications

February 22, 2011 at 6:59 pm
(9) David Bird says:

Do I get any credit for the price of the pizza and soda in my belly….about $10?

March 6, 2011 at 5:07 am
(10) Mike says:

does these elements cover for all the bones, blood, fat and muscles ? please raise a little bit more for combining the right amount at right place :)

September 8, 2011 at 7:59 am
(11) kumar says:

good.but what is the total value of body ?

September 13, 2011 at 3:28 pm
(12) jack says:

the entire human body is worth 5 bucks is what the mean. bones muscles and fat and all your organs are made of those chemicals listed above. just to clarify since some people didnt seem to get it.

December 3, 2011 at 3:06 pm
(13) Paul says:

What elements constitute the adipose tissue of a morbidly obese person ?

January 5, 2012 at 1:14 am
(14) JOeY says:

You can get more money selling your body via prostitution xP
(If you “sell” your body parts illegally
…..or if you sell a kidney, I guess.)

oh forget it; this comment is worthless and I should’ve deleted this all instead of posting it >_<

January 13, 2012 at 2:05 am
(15) DR RIZWAN says:

According Quranic theory Human body make 5 elements of health , 2 elements is diseases

HEALTH ELEMENTS DISEASES ELEMENTS

1 iron
2calcium
3cooper
4sodium
5sulfur

February 5, 2012 at 10:23 pm
(16) bob says:

ok don give me some proof of that, anyone can just say something. where is your documentation

February 11, 2012 at 7:06 pm
(17) David says:

Sure the elements are worth like 5$ but you cant succesfully transmutate a living, breathing body from these elemtens, youre organs are worth millions but the elements your body is composed of arent worth that much.

February 29, 2012 at 1:46 pm
(18) cspaugh says:

the average american life is worth 6.9 million bucks

March 8, 2012 at 11:38 am
(19) cilipadi says:

So, the God is great as only has paid 1 buck to “rent” some elements from Mother Earth, for about 80 years, to create human body. Then return all the elements back to Mother Earth, when the one’s life end.

March 11, 2012 at 2:16 pm
(20) John says:

The body might not be worth much, but the soul that resides in that body is worth 10,000 worlds to God. What can a person give in exchange for ones soul? Because once one leaves this earthly tabernacle, his soul goes somewhere, having a knowledge of existence, and having the same characteristics that one possesses prior to ones departure, since the soul is the real person behind the person.

July 27, 2012 at 11:49 pm
(21) Megan says:

It just might be possible for someone to transmute the dead to life, or create without equivalent exchange. I’m going to see if bringing the dead back to life is really a hockes or not. To beable to do it though is the hard part. Maybe if I can study the ancient art of tranformation and the philosophy of alchemists, I could create human life without the merical of birth.

August 27, 2012 at 10:44 am
(22) Krystal says:

Heheh…
It’s worth a soul, an arm and a leg! (Kudos to you if you get it!

August 31, 2012 at 9:01 am
(23) Francis says:

Hi to All,

Its nice site to read our body composition,

October 15, 2012 at 12:08 pm
(24) Dani says:

is thier more elements

January 3, 2013 at 2:53 pm
(25) Awesome says:

this site s awesome thanks for the help !!!!!!

February 28, 2013 at 10:36 pm
(26) Nori says:

Interesting comments everyone! Don’t forget God told us long ago that He made man from the dust of the the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul. Our body is the shell in which the real you lives. You were created to live for eternity with God. He even made a special way for you to return to Him through His son Jesus Christ. Your body will return to the ground, but be sure you soul and spirit return to God through Christ, who said “I am the way, the truth and the life…”

March 4, 2013 at 9:05 pm
(27) John Lennox says:

What if you calculate the value of the bodies biochemical components? Add up the commercial value of the ATP, Creatinine, DNA (as a standard), not to mention all the enzymes, cofactors etc. I realize that the individual amounts of each of these would be quite small, but I would guess they would have to be more valuable that the pure elements.

March 13, 2013 at 1:30 pm
(28) 3.14159 says:

I think I am worth more than $5

May 29, 2013 at 1:05 pm
(29) FixitFelix says:

hahaahaa maam prices may go high up during inflation $5 might sprung to $500

June 5, 2013 at 2:54 am
(30) Electronic Cigarette Starter Kits says:

Thanks for sharing your thoughts about oxygen 18.

Regards

June 13, 2013 at 11:56 pm
(31) richard says:

if you leave the elements in the compounds they are already in such as water you would be able to get quite a bit more. 20 ounce bottle going for about $1 and you have over a hundred of those. but you would be better off selling someone else’s components rather than your own since you would be dead and that would make it hard to collect your money

August 22, 2013 at 7:49 am
(32) Stevie Donnelly says:

The article is a light-hearted look at the going-rate for the elements in an average human body. At no point does it mention, or refer to; God, theology or religion, but still the Holy Willie’s have got to shove their oar in! Get a life, and stop bombarding us with this mumbo jumbo on every forum online, regardless of the subject matter. By all means give us your views, theories or comments, but spare us the fire-and-brimstone, every-soul-is-worth-10,000-worlds guff. What does that even mean??? By the way, contributor No. 28 – Pi (3.14159) – has just been devalued by 20% for vainly thinking that they are better than the rest of us mere mortals!

November 11, 2013 at 8:27 am
(33) bob bobbt says:

it was nice i loved it i always come here for all my fun projects love it!

January 29, 2014 at 10:43 am
(34) Logical guy says:

For anyone who is stupid enough bring your so called God into this, all you are doing is trying to prove you have a greater worth that you are special. You are proving that you are intelligent enough to exept the truth. And for the record, our body can easily be created with proper elements,skills,knowledge,and equipment. However, it is the unique personality that cannot be created.And here comes the best part.This is all coming a 14 YEAR OLD

February 24, 2014 at 5:19 pm
(35) DatStudentWhoLikesFacts says:

Amazing. This helped me majorly.Thx all so much I really enjoy this site since I can learn all this cool, new neat stuff.

March 5, 2014 at 9:36 pm
(36) Chromodynamix says:

Not a mention of all that Iron which makes up your blood?

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