Looking After The Human Zoo

When you see a human individual – or any other animal – there is actually much more than meets the eye. The number of microorganisms on and inside us has been estimated to outnumber our own cells by a factor of ten. This delicate ecosystems is however endangered by the modern habit of washing too much, at least in industrialized countries where a variety of soaps, shower gels, or deodorants are being over-used by many. Acne, eczema, irritable bowel syndrome, various allergies, and a host of other diseases are thought to have their origin in the bacterial genocide that people commit when they abuse cleaning products on themselves or their children.

The use of probiotics (tablets containing lyophilized bacteria) helps in the treatment of various illnesses caused by the drastic reduction of the natural microbe population. The best treatment, though, should be in the prevention of the mass killing of our microbial community and in the knowledge that bactericidal soaps should only be used in operating theaters. The old saying may say that “cleanliness is next to godliness,” but we should remember that we are no gods and that, as mere humans, we need those bugs to maintain a good quality of life.

Source: Wired

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