Tag Archives: germs

Germ theory and the post-antibiotic age

From Tim O’Shea on Life Enthusiast blog:

When once you interfere with the order of nature, there is no knowing where the results will end.
– Herbert Spencer

It was great while it lasted: the age of antibiotics. Sure came and went in a hurry, though, didn’t it? Left me with a few questions:

  • How did antibiotics run their course already in just 50 years?
  • How did we get so sick?
  • Where does all the money go?
  • Why aren’t we making any progress?
  • What’s going to happen now?

These are the questions for which you can almost never get a straight answer. Unless you look beyond Newsweek, beyond the San Francisco Chronicle, beyond 20/20, or Ted Turner, beyond the media which year by year seem to cater to an ever-dwindling level of literacy and awareness… Continue reading

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Raw milk from herd-shares in Michigan

Here’s an excerpt from a recent story on the Michigan raw milk scene, from “the Great Lakes Echo“, as reported by Angie Jackson:

“Got milk? Unpasteurized milk, that is.

Whether consumers should be allowed to purchase unpasteurized milk has been a hot topic in Michigan for years. Although its sale is illegal in the state, the debate over its availability and health risks is ongoing.

There’s no pending legislation to permit its sale, but farmers can legally provide unpasteurized milk through so-called “herd share” agreements. Continue reading

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Huffington Post equates drinking raw milk with shaking hands with someone who didn’t wash after using the toilet!

It’s nice to think that the bleeding hearts at the Huffington Post are trying to do their bit to stick up for the underdog — which is this case is pasteurized milk — suffering as it does from all the publicity that its black sheep cousin, raw milk, is getting. And it’s always good fun to hear pasteurization advocates trying to defend the practice. Here’s an excerpt from that recent HuffPo story by Glen D. Braunstein, titled “Got (Safe) Milk?“:

“Let’s start with a short quiz. Two men exit bathroom stalls after having a bowel movement. One washes his hands and the other doesn’t. Which one would you rather shake hands with? If you value your health, the answer is pretty obvious. Why take a chance of picking up somebody else’s colonic bacteria, which you will undoubtedly transfer to your mouth, unless, of course, you immediately wash your hands with copious amounts of soap and water?

Basically, this is the issue with pasteurized versus raw milk. Continue reading

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Got Milk? Keep it Raw

So says this writer of a recent letter to the editor in the Surrey Leader. See excerpt below. Surrey is a suburb of Vancouver, where local raw milk suppliers Alice Jongerden and Gordon Watson of Home on the Range cowshare will be in court Monday defending people’s right to choose.

"A letter writer argues that exposure to dirt and grime is helpful to children, for building immunity to asthma and allergies...." Photo via Surrey Leader

“The doomsayers who are utilizing Louis Pasteur’s theory for labelling our raw milk products a health hazard almost make me feel I am lucky to be alive, considering that was the only kind of milk available to me for the first 17 years of my life.

They conveniently forget that he is also the founder of the science of immunology, and ignoring the fact that pasteurizing is the simplest part of the legacy he left us. Just heat the stuff to a certain temperature, and hope that the good bacteria will still be alive. Continue reading

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Germ warfare in Swedish hospitals

Lactobacillus plantarum --  "Good" germs may work as well as antiseptics in protecting hospital patients from dangerous infections, Swedish researchers reported

Lactobacillus plantarum -- "good" germs that help protect patients from infection according to studies from Sweden. Photo: Reuters

This Reuters news story titled “Good germs fight bad germs in hospital” has important implications for raw milk safety. No longer is the sole official index of safety the mere absence of “germs”. No, here is some recognition for the reality that not all germs are bad and that good germs can be beneficial in controlling bad germs. Read on:

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – “Good” germs may work as well as antiseptics in protecting hospital patients from dangerous infections, Swedish researchers reported on Wednesday.

Patients swabbed with probiotic bacteria called Lactobacillus plantarum 299 escaped infection as well as those cleaned up using the antiseptic chlorhexidine, they reported. Continue reading

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Exposure to bacteria is good for you — according to Yale University study

“‘Friendly’ bacteria protect against type 1 diabetes, Yale researchers find

In a dramatic illustration of the potential for microbes to prevent disease, researchers at Yale University and the University of Chicago showed that mice exposed to common stomach bacteria were protected against the development of Type I diabetes.

The findings, reported in the journal “Nature”, support the so-called “hygiene hypothesis” – the theory that a lack of exposure to parasites, bacteria and viruses in the developed world may lead to increased risk of diseases like allergies, asthma, and other disorders of the immune system. The results also suggest that exposure to some forms of bacteria might actually help prevent onset of Type I diabetes, an autoimmune disease in which the patient’s immune system launches an attack on cells in the pancreas that produce insulin. Continue reading

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