Monthly Archives: June 2014

Increase in Fiber Intake Post Heart Attack Lengthens Life

Eat your fiber, you have likely been told by well-meaning friends, health magazines, or possibly even your doctor (and definitely by me). While it may seem like obvious advice given the plethora of health benefits associated with increased fiber intake, only five percent of Americans are actually eating the recommended amount. That’s a terrible shame in my opinion. Fiber is…

Bacteria and the Skin

When someone talks about the bacteria that are found in and on the human body, the conversation usually turns to the gut because that is where the majority of these microbes are found. But the skin is an often overlooked habitat for a large diversity of microbes that are only recently being recognized as important for human health. In a…

Probiotics for the Common Cold

Probiotics, or beneficial bacteria, have been studied for a number of health conditions, but one of the most exciting benefits of probiotics is their effect on the common cold. A number of studies have looked at probiotic treatment and prevention of upper respiratory tract infections (cold and flu, most notably). A recent systematic review evaluated data from twelve randomized, controlled…

Surface of the Digestive Tract Smaller than We Thought

For as long as I can remember, I have considered the area of the surface of the digestive tract to be about the size of a tennis court—an amazing statistic when you think about it. Most of this area comes from the small intestine where fingerlike villi and microvilli extend out from the intestinal lining, greatly increasing the surface area…

Human Placenta Contains a Community of Microbes

The human microbiome is vast, accounting for 90 percent of our cells. Microbial composition varies from site to site across a range of niches in and on the body. Some niches—such as the colon—are colonized by a very high number of microbes. Other niches—such as the stomach—are colonized by lower amount of microbes. There are yet other areas of the…

Moldy Homes and Parkinson’s—is there a Connection?

It was only after Hurricane Katrina flooded her New Orleans home that mold toxin expert Joan Bennett started to believe moldy homes could, in fact, make people sick—and only because she witnessed the effects firsthand. Those effects (dizziness, nausea, headache) were actually triggered by the smell of the mold in her home, and that smell was caused by something called…

Antidepressant Use During Pregnancy Linked to Autism

There are many factors that contribute to autism. While some experts will lead you to believe that genetics are to blame, many other experts are hard at working identifying a number of environmental contributors to the disorder. I discussed many of these in my book, The Road to Perfect Health. The truth is more likely somewhere in the middle. Both…