Ancestral wisdom passed down from generation to generation contains scientific evidence that can sometimes take centuries to uncover. A very recent example is found in research conducted by members of the Institute for Computational Biology at George Washington University. Its goal: to test the so-called novelty hypothesis.
In anthropology, the “grandmother hypothesis” refers to the high longevity of females who, unlike males, are not fertile throughout their lives. Revered grandmothers give an evolutionary advantage to the community, as they devote themselves to helping with care and imparting knowledge. These two aspects also apply For body wash.
And if we had thought we had Yessssssssss They exaggerated when they demanded that we leave every corner clean, and science confirms that they were right. Leaving key areas unwashed results in a A less healthy microbiomeAccording to his works published in Frontiers in microbiology. To do this, the community of microorganisms inhabiting the human skin of healthy people was sampled by different body regions, from the armpit to the navel and even behind the ears.
[¿Te cantan las axilas? Un trasplante de bacterias podría ayudarte]
As Keith Crandall, director of the Institute for Computational Biology and professor of biostatistics and bioinformatics at George Washington University, explains, his grandmother always told him that “It is rubbed behind the ears, between the fingers, and on the navel.”. It turns out that these areas can harbor completely different bacteria than those found in other areas of the body, precisely because they are overlooked during washing.
To reach this conclusion, the researchers 129 graduate and undergraduate students were analysedSamples were collected from the calves, forearms, ear folds, gaps between the toes, and the navel. They were then taught how to sequence DNA from these samples, comparing the oily and dirty areas with samples taken from the dry, cleaner areas.
In fact, Both Crandall and his grandmother were right: Areas that have been cleaned more regularly have a more diverse microbiome and contain a range of potentially healthier microorganisms than more neglected areas.
“the Dry skin areas (Forearms and calves) were more consistent, richer and functionally different from Fatty areas (behind the ears) and wetlands (navel and between the toes),” In addition, “within skin regions, bacterial alpha and beta diversity also varied significantly during some of the comparison years, suggesting “suggesting that skin bacterial stability may depend on the region and the person.” “
It also occurs in the intestinal microbiome Skin microbiome It consists of beneficial microorganisms that are beneficial to the human body, but there are also harmful microorganisms. Other than that balance are necessary, and tipping the scales in favor of harmful microorganisms can be dangerous. In fact, as Crandall himself explains, this will be the basis of some skin diseases such as Eczema or acne.
The relationship between microbiome health and human health still requires more research, although the authors point out that this new work could be a good reference point for future research.