The Mysteries of the Rib Cage
The skeletal system consists of over 200 bones. The largest bone is the femur, and the smallest bone is the stapes. Bones transfer forces that the body experiences while moving or while at rest. They also protect organs. The rib cage is particularly interesting.
What are the Functions of the Rib Cage?
Ribs protect vital organs from blunt force. They can stop a punch or a kick. The rib cage consists of the vertebral column, ribs, and sternum. It protects the lungs and heart. Most people have 24 ribs. In between each rib is the coastal cartilages. The rib cage serves as attachment points for muscles in the back, neck, thorax, and upper abdomen.
Breathing Wouldn’t Be Possible Without the Rib Cage
The rib cage is involved in breathing. The intercostal muscles lift the rib cage up and out, while the muscular diaphragm contracts and flattens. The thoracic cavity moves in three planes – transverse, vertical, and anterioposterior.
The last two ribs of the rib cage are called floating ribs because they aren’t attached to the sternum.
Bibical References to the Rib Cage
The rib cage is mentioned in the bible. Here’s one verse:
“Howbeit he refused to turn aside: wherefore Abner with the hinder end of the spear smote him under the fifth rib, that the spear came out behind him; and he fell down there, and died in the same place: and it came to pass, that as many as came to the place where Asahel fell down and died stood still.” – 2 Samuel 2:23 King James Version
Rib Variations and Tightlacing
1 in 200-500 people have an additional cervical rib. Even rarer are individuals with intrathoracic supernumerary ribs.
The ribs can be moved with a corset. The practice is called tightlacing. The goal is to make the waist look slimmer and increase the bustline to accentuate the breasts. The volume of the lungs decrease and the person tends to breathe with the upper portions of the lungs (intercoastal breathing).
The ribs of animals are commonly harvested for food. For example, goat ribs are processed and delivered to markets for consumption. There are a few goat rib recipes online. Most are barbecue-based recipes that are great for outdoor cooking. If you can’t find a recipe, you can create your own goat rib recipe.
Goats are mentioned in the bible. They are considered clean animals and thus, you could follow a goat rib recipe without upsetting the religious folks. Here’s the verse from Deuteronomy 14:4:
“These are the animals which you may eat: the ox, the sheep, the goat, the deer, the gazelle, the roebuck, the wild goat, the ibex, the antelope and the mountain sheep.…”
The wild goat would include goat ribs and any goat rib recipe would be fine to prepare.