Writing Exercise #9

  • List and describe as many changes in human behaviors as you can think of that contribute to decreased exposure to microbes.
    • Differences in diet 
      • Less diverse diverse diets decrease exposure to microbes. Dietary choices that exclude food products from animals or plants narrow the microbiome even further.  
    • Stricter hygienic practices  
      • Constantly cleaning decreases exposure to microbes significantly 
      • Heavy use of things such as hand sanitizers, bleach, detergents all kill off microbes and decrease exposure 
    • Children born via C-section 
      • Children born via C-section face less exposure to microbes compared to vaginal birth where they are exposed to the mother’s vaginal microbes 
    • Mode of feeding
      • Feeding children via breastfeeding is an important factor in the colonization of the microbial community in infants as human milk contains bacteria important for establishing a “healthy” and diverse microbiome
      • Formula-fed infants are experienced to less microbes as they lack the bacteria found in human breast milk 
    • Not allowing children to play outside and be exposed to the bacteria that they wouldn’t be exposed to in the house alone. 
    • Antibiotic treatment decreases exposure to microbes as it kills off high abundances of bacteria
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