These days, the fact that some bacteria can be good for you is a bit of an open secret. However, just how beneficial the right bacteria is for your body is still being studied.
Here are four areas in which bacteria go to work for your body:
Bacteria in the gut are some of the most well-known beneficial germs. These bacteria make up the microbiota and aid in digestion, among other things. Gut bacteria help get rid of what your body doesn’t need, but they also help the body run smoothly beyond your belly.
Keeping the right amount of good bacteria in your gut can depend a lot on what goes into your body. Eating healthy food can help build up good bacteria, while taking unnecessary antibiotics can kill these good germs off.
Related link: 4 easy ways to improve gut health
The lung microbiome is something that has only begun to be studied in recent years, so scientists still do not know all the ways a healthy lung microbiome affects the body. However, researchers have found that the lungs are full of colonies of bacteria, and the balance of bacteria there may affect a person’s immunity. An imbalance of bacteria in the lungs could contribute to chronic conditions like asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and cystic fibrosis.
If you keep your hand sanitizer at the ready to zap any germs that may come your way, you may want to think twice. The skin is another part of the body that has its own microbiota full of bacteria communities. Having the right bacteria on your skin could help your skin to fight off infections. In studies with germ-free mice, those who were given a common skin bacteria were able to fight off harmful microbes, while those without the bacteria could not.
Having a mouth full of bacteria might not be something you want to visualize, but that bacteria is doing more than you know. Healthy bacteria in your mouth may help prevent cavities and periodontal disease. Embarrassing bad breath could also be caused by an imbalance of bacteria in your mouth. Researchers are currently studying whether specific probiotic strains could help battle these conditions.
Related link: 4 dental health tips worth smiling about
Germs are all around us, some good and some bad. In many cases, the best way to fight bacteria is with bacteria. It is important to follow medical advice when battling illnesses, but a healthy balance of bacteria is a good thing for everyday wellness. Don’t be too hasty to kill off all those healthy germs in your body.
This article was originally published by the Daily Herald.