Chemistry - Why do I need it?

Chemistry, in my opinion, is the most widely applied subject in the educational system. You can apply chemistry when you're cooking, cleaning, filling up your car, brewing beer or wine, welding, dating (carbon and speed dating), and thousands of industrial processes. I once heard from one of my chemistry professors, Dr. Chad Morris, "Chemistry is applied physics, and physics is applied math." Therefore physics, chemistry, and math all work in harmony.
You probably apply chemistry every day and don't realize it. When you make coffee in the morning, ever wondered about the chemistry involved in making a cup of joe? You have to first grind the roasted coffee beans to expose the caffeine and flavor compounds housed within the beans. You then have to filter hot water through the grinds to extract the much needed caffeine and flavors. Water works as a solvent to dissolve the polar caffeine and flavor molecules which pass through the coffee filter and into your carafe. The flavor compounds bind to the taste bud receptors on your tongue and the caffeine is absorbed into the blood stream via the GI tract. The end product: a subtle coffee "buzz".
And why can you taste when coffee is "stale"? Oxygen. Dissolved oxygen oxidizes (attacks) the fragile flavor compounds in the coffee which causes the coffee to have that "old" taste. The same concept applies to beer and wine.
In conclusion, chemistry is a very easily applied science. Therefore if you ever think: "I don't understand chemistry. I don't see why I need to learn it anyways, I'm not a science major." just know that you probably use it every day without realizing it.


Andrew M.

General Chemistry, Org/Inorg Chem, Biochem, Biology, Precalc, Prealg

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