Recycling isn't a new concept
Over the last ten years, we have been persuaded, pushed, and practically forced to recycle more and more of the things that we would normally throw away. Of course, we know that recycling is a good way to treat the materials that we have, but are we aware just how much recycling controls our own lives and bodies?
Because carbon can exist quite happily as both a solid and a gas, it is relatively stable, and therefore can move around our planet quite easily. When we die or even when we shed hair and skin the carbon in our bodies is broken down, and becomes part of the soil again. Ashes to ashes, dust to dust.
What many people don't know is that the recycling system isn't just limited to our planet. In fact, there is a high chance that some of the atoms within your body that make up 'you' were once part of a star, millions of years ago. Gases and meteors travel through space, spreading out the materials that once shone in the sky, and that carbon now lives within you. You could even argue that because it takes the light of some stars millions of years to reach us, the carbon that made a star that still glitters in our sky could already be a part of you.
Amazingly, approximately three billion human beings have been recycled so far, and it probably won't be long until that number increases massively. Our population sizes are rapidly growing, and this will only dramatically speed up the process by which the carbon cycle will break down our bodies. But for now, whenever you think of recycling, remember this: there's also a chance you've drunk the same water molecule that a dinosaur has.