Thursday, February 26, 2015

Symbiotic Life

I have been reading a lot of material lately about the effect of our microbiome on the body & mind. The microbiome is the collection of single-celled microorganisms throughout our living tissues.

In fact, the number of bacterial cells far outweighs the number of actual human cells. Physically, we are a biological vehicle for genes & also for other organisms.

We mostly live in a positive symbiosis with these tiny creatures living throughout our body.

NY Times:

I've long suspected that these microorganisms have had a greater effect on us than we'd like to admit.

Now, it's being discovered that gut microbes affect our eating habits, and even our psychology.

Psychology Today:

Even the act of intimate kissing is an exchange of billions of bacteria.

Science Daily:

This is why, despite liking cleanliness, I'm not really a germaphobe. I feel that we are surrounded by and infused with microorganisms, so it's nothing to fear.

However, reading this NatGeo article about the destructive symbiosis of invasive parasites & seeing the accompanying photos might make someone change their mind- if the parasites haven't already done it for them...

National Geographic:

George Lucas was ridiculed for including "Midichlorians" in the Star Wars prequel movies, as the microbiological source of the mystical energy field surrounding all living things- The Force.

Like so many things, Lucas was actually prescient in his recognition of the influence of symbiotic microbes on a living being.

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