Eat Dirt – Researchers Come "CLEAN" About Alzheimer’s – Better Hygiene, Higher Risk

Hmm. Hmm. Good Microbes.

With all the emphasis on hand hygiene to prevent infection and the whole hullababllo over hospital acquired infections comes this story.

Researchers at the University of Cambridge and Department of Anthropology, University of
Utah have suggested that better hygiene leads to more risk of Alzheimer’s Disease.

The ‰ÛÏhygiene hypothesis‰Û suggests that certain aspects of modern life (e.g. antibiotics, sanitation, clean drinking-water, paved roads) are associated with lower rates of exposure to microorganisms such as than would have been present during the majority of human history. Yet, exposure to microorganisms is critical for the regulation of the immune system.åÊ

Individuals whose early life circumstances were characterized by less exposure to infectious agents exhibit higher rates of autoimmune disorders.åÊ

So in other words our bodies need to be exposed to be able to build up immunity. If not, the inflammation associated with Alzheimer’s is allowed to spread. And when you live in a “sanitary” society, well, you are less exposed to microbes.

Researchers hope this research can be used to predict Alzheimer’s Disesase burden in developing countries where microbial diversity is rapidly diminishing. Forecasting is important for preparing for future healthcare needs and research prioritization.

What did your parents always say? Something about having to eat a pound of dirt before we die.