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Most of the living organisms carry out aerobic respiration (by using oxygen of air).For example, humans (man), dogs, cats, lions, elephants, cows, buffaloes, goat, deer, birds, lizards, snakes, earthworms, frogs, fish, and insects (such as cockroach, grasshopper, houseflies, mosquitoes and ants, etc.) and most of the plants carry out aerobic respiration by using oxygen of air (to obtain energy). Anaerobic Respiration: The respiration which takes place without oxygen is called anaerobic respiration.This is because if there is no oxygen, they cannot get energy from the food which they eat.
Thus, muscle cramps occur due to the accumulation of lactic acid in muscles when the muscles respire an aerobically (without oxygen) while doing hard physical exercise.
We can get relief from cramps in muscles caused by heavy exercise by taking a hot water bath or a massage.
The breaking down of glucose (food) during aerobic respiration (which is carried out by most of the organisms) can be represented.
Please note that during aerobic respiration (shown above), 1 molecule of glucose (food) produces 38 energy-rich ATP molecules (Please do not worry about the name ‘Kreb’s cycle’ written in the above equation. All the organisms which obtain energy by aerobic respiration cannot live without oxygen (of air).
So far we have studied that respiration takes place in the presence of oxygen (of air).
Respiration can, however, also take place in the absence of oxygen (of air), though it is very rare.
Hot water bath (or massage) improves the circulation of blood in the muscles.
Due to improved blood flows the supply of oxygen to the muscles increases.
It is called anaerobic respiration because it takes place without air which contains oxygen (‘anaerobic’ means ‘without air’).
The microscopic organisms like yeast and some bacteria obtain energy by anaerobic respiration (which is called! In anaerobic respiration, the micro-organisms like yeast break down glucose (food) into ethanol and carbon dioxide, and release energy. Anaerobic respiration produces much less energy which gets stored in the ATP molecules.