Jan
10
2008

Get down. Get dirty. Get healthy.

Hookworms in the lining of the intestines: All together now: "ewwwwwwwwwwww."
Hookworms in the lining of the intestines: All together now: "ewwwwwwwwwwww."Courtesy Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Cleanliness is next to godliness, but is it possible to have too much of a good thing? For several decades, immunological diseases -- such as hay fever, asthma, diabetes and multiple sclerosis – have been increasing in developed countries, but are uncommon in many undeveloped regions. Medical researcher Joel Weinstock theorizes that modern life is too clean – by scrupulously avoiding dirt, bugs and germs, our immune systems don’t develop properly, leading to the diseases listed above. Weinstock goes so far as to speculate that exposure to hookworm, pinworm, and other intestinal parasites may have been the trigger necessary for developing a healthy immune system. As these parasites have been eradicated, immunological diseases have skyrocketed.

The theory is currently being tested in the lab. Weinstock doesn’t advocate the return of worm infestations. But he does think that getting your hands dirty once in a while can help keep your body in balance.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

hawa's picture
hawa says:

It is true that cleanilness is next to godliness but some people don't know
that dirt bring germ in the body so they can whatever they can to get it which is bad for them.

posted on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 2:24pm
Gene's picture
Gene says:

And now a researcher from England is promoting deliberate infection with hookworms as a way to fight allergies.

posted on Wed, 07/02/2008 - 12:05pm

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