There’s been a lot of great media coverage on the human microbiome and the impact on our health. Here is a shortlist of a few of our favorite longer-form pieces (so far!). These pieces are great for anyone who is keen on going deeper into the wonderful world of human bacteria.
The New Yorker
By Michael Specter
October 22, 2012
This wide-ranging New Yorker article is a favorite as it was maybe the first I read which connected so many of the dots and get me excited about the possibilities within this emerging area of health sciences. Specter offers a persuasive narrative touching on such topics as the connection between antibiotics and weight-gain, the correlation between cesarean section birth delivery and higher instances of asthma and allergies, and even fecal transplants. A very compelling read.
New York Times Magazine
By Michael Pollan
May 15, 2013
Michal Pollan writes in this New York Times Magazine piece about the work being done to study our microbiomes including efforts by scientists with the American Gut Project who are cataloging and sequencing human bacteria, much in the same vein as was once done with human DNA sequencing. He discusses how our microbes evolve in early years of development. He also looks at how certain more remote populations have different gut bacteria compositions than more modern cultures (primarily due to modern medicinal techniques) and some of the potential implications. Michal Pollan has written books such as The Omivore’s Dilemma, and In Defense of Food.
By Terry Gross (WHYY, Philadelphia)
April 14, 2014
This is a 45 minute radio interview by famous American radio journalist Terry Gross who interviews Dr. Martin Blaser about his forthcoming book called Missing Microbes: How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues. The podcast offers a great view of the topics on Blaser’s mind such as his hypothesis that Americans are being over prescribed antibiotics, the importance of developing healthy microbiomes particularly in children under 3 years old, and hypothesis on why we are seeing much higher incidents of food allergies than ever before. Something interesting to listen to on your commute or while you are on the treadmill.
Going Feral: my one-year journey to acquire the healthiest gut microbiome in the world (you heard me!)
By Jeff Leach
January 19, 2014
This is a classic. Jeff has previously spent time with the Hadzabe hunter-gathers people in Tanzania and has studied and documented their microbiomes, learning about and documenting some of their cultural practices that appear to be linked directly to proactive gut bacteria health management. Now he’s embarking on a year of changing diets and environments, and having his poo samples studied and tracked all the while. All, in pursuit of observing how diet changes the composition of his skin, mouth and gut bacteria. An awesome idea and exciting journey for Jeff. We at HealthyGutBugs.com are eagerly following the action.
If you have favorites of your own, please post them below in the comments.