Popular Science News | We Are Homes To Bacteria

Popular Science News | it is a fact that our bodies consist of ten times more bacterial cells than our own cells. Usually when we think of bacteria, we think of disease but in the case of our bacterial co-habitants this is not the case. We begin life sterile, and collect bacteria from our environment as we develop. This process starts as we pass from the womb through our mother’s birth canal.

Whilst these bacteria are harmless if the stay where they are supposed to, move them to a different location in our body and we may end up with a serious illness. For example, in the blood (causing sepsis) or in the tissue between the abdominal organs (causing peritonitis). In some cases bacteria are essential for our well being, as in the case of those manufacturing vitamin b12. There is also a group of bacteria which breaks down our food so that we are able to extract more nutrients than we would be capable of otherwise.

One bacteria, H. pylori, is associated with obesity. This bacteria helps produce a hormone that regulates appetite; without it we feel more hungry. Some argue that the overuse of antibiotics has produced a generation with low levels of this bacteria and as a result we eat more because our appetites tend to be suppressed less.

The worry is also that along with H. pylori many other beneficial bacteria are being destroyed and this is making us more susceptible disease. It is odd to think that the pharmaceutical industry, by promoting the widespread use of antibiotics, may well be making us more dependent on their products.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Comments are closed.