Aerobic & Anaerobic Respiration: Definition, Steps, Equation, Products,

In this article, we will learn all about Aerobic Respiration and Anaerobic Respiration along with definition, steps, equation or formula, products, etc.

Let’s explore!

What are Aerobic & Anaerobic Respiration?

We all know regarding the process of Respiration process that takes in plants. All the living beings in this world breathe, and that is respiration. The processes of respiration in all living beings are different. Similarly, the plants have a different Respiration process, which is called “Photosynthesis.”

In this context, we will understand the two Respiration process that takes place in plants.

The Two types of Respiration processes are

  • Aerobic Respiration
  • Anaerobic Respiration

What is Aerobic Respiration? Definition, Equation, Steps

Aerobic Respiration Definition

In plants, there are some small cells and organelle. These cells help the plants to perform their activities and stay alive. Oxygen helps in the respiration process of plants, and cells help the plant parts to grow. The plants need the energy to breathe, and when such respiration takes place in the presence of oxygen, it is called Aerobic Respiration.

aerobic respiration definition steps equation products
Aerobic respiration definition steps equation products Image: Google

In the Process of Aerobic Respiration, plants enable the glucose to break down more. This happens when the plant gets more oxygen.  In the presence of oxygen, plants easily break down the glucose, and gases get easily exchanged from leaves, roots, and stems. This helps and allows the plants for aerobic respiration.

Moreover, Aerobic Respiration helps the food transform into sound energy, which supports the plant’s cells.

Equation for Aerobic Respiration

Glucose + Oxygen →Carbon Dioxide + Water + Energy

Breathing is followed by oxygen by living organisms. When respiration takes place through oxygen, it goes inside, and the glucose is broken down into pieces. This ultimately helps release a good amount of energy and further in the growing process of the living beings. Proper flowing oxygen is required for the body.

Energy is measured in ATP (Adenosine triphosphate). Here, more ATP is produced.

Steps for Aerobic Respiration

Three Stages comes under the process of Aerobic Respiration, and those are mentioned below:


Glycolysis: The main primary function of Glycolysis is converting glucose into good energy.


Citric Acid or the Kerbs Cycle: It is considered another essential process of Aerobic Respiration. In this cycle, the energy generation is followed by such as Carbohydrates, etc.


Oxidative phosphorylation: In this process, the energy is transferred and used for the mitochondria present under the plant.

What is Anaerobic Respiration? Definition, Equation, Steps

Anaerobic Respiration Definition

It is not expected every time that oxygen will be present. There are some points when oxygen remains absent. Anaerobic Respiration takes place at that moment when oxygen is not available. It is compulsory for plants or for any other living organisms to breathe. So, whenever the oxygen is less or unavailable, a plant starts following the anaerobic process for breathing.

anaerobic respiration definition steps equation products
Anaerobic respiration definition steps equation products Image: Google

Sometimes gases are not exchanged among the parts of plants, and the oxygen remains absent. When there is no presence of oxygen in plants, the plants get allow themselves respiration, and such kind of respiration is known as Anaerobic Respiration.

Steps for Anaerobic Respiration

The Stages comes under the process of Anaerobic Respiration, and those are mentioned below:

  1. In this process, the food is broken down into very small particles, and then the energy from it is transmitted to the parts. Even if oxygen is absent, this process continues to provide energy.
  2. There are two kinds of Anaerobic Respiration named Alcoholic Fermentation as well as Lactic acid Fermentation.
  3. The other name of Anaerobic Respiration is termed Fermentation. Fermentation has a similar process as the Anaerobic Respiration process have.
  4. There are various parts where the oxygen doesn’t reach well. So, anaerobic oxygen has the best advantage in such a situation. It has its positive impacts in such times also, and development of plant does not stop.
  5. There are many places where oxygen does not reach properly and stays far away, such as underwater underneath the ocean and seas. The small microorganism that lives inside the water and because of unavailability of the oxygen, they use the same process of respiration and live.

Equation for Anaerobic Respiration

Glucose→ Alcohol+ Carbon Dioxide+ Energy

The anaerobic Respiration process helps to provide oxygen when it is less present. For plants, it helps to release energy and food even during the oxygen is less. For a human boy, this helps continue the blood circulation process, which is vital. The glucose in this process does not break down because of less oxygen, and this process takes place.

There are numerous differences between aerobic and anaerobic respiration that can be easily understandable.

  • For an easy understanding, few points are listed below:
  • In Aerobic respiration, oxygen is required, and plants properly use the oxygen in this process. Whereas, in the anaerobic process, oxygen remains absent.
  • In Aerobic respiration, energy is released more, but in anaerobic, the release of energy declines.
  • The breakdown of Glucose in Aerobic is conducted fully, but in anaerobic, the breakdown either declines or stops.
  • These two types of Respiration processes take place both in plants and animals as well.
  • When the oxygen is relevantly present, it provides more energy, while in Anaerobic, the release of energy also declines anyway due to the low oxygen level.
  • Energy is measured in ATP (Adenosine triphosphate). Here, less ATP is produced compared to aerobic respiration.

Support to Plant Cells

The aerobic and Anaerobic Respiration process supports the Cells of living organisms such as plants. In this context, we will understand the cells and their importance in all living beings.

As we know, a cell in any living body helps carry out all the essential functions to stay alive. They are tiny and exist in trillions. They are in numerous divisions. When we eat our food, it does flow directly to all the parts. The cell starts performing its activity and takes the nutrients of the food to a different part.

In such a way, a cell enables the body to get energy and perform multiple activities. This primary function of cells helps the body to grow and provide life.

How do Plant Cells work?

Plants cells also perform the same activity, and it takes the nutrients to different parts such as stem, leaves, roots, etc. A suitable cell of a plant helps in proper growth and keeps it strong. A cell that is present in all the plants is known as the “Eukaryotic Cell.” The other small microbes have the same cell in their body.

If we talk about plant cells, it consists of different parts known as Cell walls, Chloroplasts, and Plastids. The cell wall of a plant helps and protects it from getting eaten by small microbes. It also helps the leaves and stems from getting shrink. It acts as a protector for plants.

Similarly, Chloroplasts help in transforming the energy for the plants. Moreover, the plastids help in carrying on the process of photosynthesis relevantly. A cell of the plants keeps the stems and roots growing well with enabling them to proper respiration.

The importance and understanding of respiration are nowhere hidden from anyone. It is a nonending and vital process of all the living things on this planet. Not even a single piece of a living organism can survive without the Respiration Process.

Difference Between Aerobic and Anaerobic Respiration

We have got the basic concept of aerobic and anaerobic respiration. Now, let try to find out what is the main key difference between aerobic and anaerobic respiration.

aerobic anaerobic respiration definition steps equation difference
Aerobic anaerobic respiration definition steps equation difference

Let’s see the differences in tabulated forms,

Aerobic RespirationAnaerobic Respiration
During this process, oxygen is presentDuring this process, oxygen is NOT present
Aerobic Respiration may be seen in the cytoplasm, even in the mitochondria.Anaerobic Respiration cannot be found in the mitochondria. It may be seen only in the cytoplasm.
Gases are exchanged in the Aerobic Respiration process.Gases are not exchanged in the anaerobic Respiration process.
Mainly applicable to mammals.Mainly applicable for bacteria, yeast
The equation for aerobic respiration process,Glucose + Oxygen →Carbon Dioxide + Water + EnergyThe equation for the anaerobic respiration process,Glucose→ Alcohol+ Carbon Dioxide+ Energy
More energy (ATP) is produced.Less energy (ATP) is produced.


Hence, the two types of respiration take place in everybody. For example, in a human body, oxygen cannot reach properly and is way essential. For instance, in arms or other internal places, the reach of oxygen is quite hard or almost impossible. It is not mandatory that oxygen is reachable till those places.

But with the help of anaerobic respiration, this process continues and helps to work on its own. This is not a negative process, so many disadvantages cannot be taken out. However, the energy-releasing may be less but acts as a supporter, so it cannot be considered a disadvantage.

It is somehow necessary for plants, humans as well as animals. There is no doubt that this process should not occur, whereas it must take place in every aspect.

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