Flesh is a term for some soft tissues of an organism. Various multicellular organisms have soft tissues that may be called "flesh". In mammals, including humans, "flesh" covers muscle tissues and fat, but not for example brain tissue. In a culinary context animal (and occasionally plant) flesh is called meat.

In particular animal groups such as vertebrates, molluscs, and arthropods, the flesh is distinguished from non-fleshy body structures such as bone, shell, and exoskeleton, respectively.[1] In plants, the flesh is the soft tissue that comprises structures such as edible fruits, as opposed to tough structures like non-fleshy fruits and wood. In fungi, "flesh" refers to trama, the soft, inner portion of a mushroom, or fruit body.[2]

A more restrictive usage may be found in some contexts, such as the visual arts, where "flesh" may refer only to visible human skin, as opposed to parts of the body covered by clothing and hair. "Flesh" as a descriptor for colour usually refers to the pinkish skin colour of Caucasian humans.



  1. ^ "Flesh". dictionary.reference.com. Retrieved 14 February 2013.
  2. ^ Jaeger, Edmund Carroll; Jaeger, Edmund Carroll (1959). A source-book of biological names and terms. Springfield, Ill: Thomas. ISBN 978-0-398-06179-1.