April 15, 2010

STERILE CUCKOO:

Excessive cleanliness may boost allergies (Jennifer Harper, 4/15/10, Washington Times)

"Allergies have become widespread in developed countries: hay fever, eczema, hives and asthma are all increasingly prevalent. The reason? Excessive cleanliness is to blame," said Dr. Guy Delespesse, an immunologist and director of the Allergy Research Laboratory at the University of Montreal.

The school released new findings on the topic Wednesday.

While family history, air pollution, processed foods, stress and other factors can trigger allergic reactions, Dr. Delespesse is concerned by "our limited exposure to bacteria" — even cautioning parents to lighten up when their children drop toys on the floor.

"There is an inverse relationship between the level of hygiene and the incidence of allergies and autoimmune diseases," he said. "The more sterile the environment a child lives in, the higher the risk he or she will develop allergies or an immune problem in their lifetime."

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 15, 2010 6:18 AM
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