Why Your Child Doesn’t Need a Daily Bath

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Our Saturday green news brings you the latest on health, parenting and cool baby and kid products:Daily Bath, child bath

  • Why your child doesn’t need a daily bath: Based on a recent research into the hidden universe of organisms (bacteria, viruses and fungi) teeming throughout our glands, hair follicles and epidermis, the repeated use of soap on clean skin can actually destroy the microflora, which is beneficial to our health. Rob Dunn, a biology professor and author of “The Wild Life of Our Bodies” explains that the overuse of antibiotics, antiseptics, antihelminthics and pesticides, can do more harm than good. “Overly clean living can be bad for our immune systems, which need certain microbes and gut bacteria to function properly and to keep us healthy from the more dangerous pathogens.” One of the most striking differences is parental preoccupation with hygiene, or lack thereof. It’s said that “a little dirt doesn’t hurt,” and keeping kids spotlessly clean may do more damage than good. Most North American parents are hooked on daily bath routine, which may be fun and soothing for children, but at the same time there are costs to this daily process of decontamination.
  • Autism genes linked to higher intelligence: According to a new study published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, genes linked with a greater risk of developing autism may also be associated with higher intelligence. Researchers at the Universities of Edinburgh and Queensland analyzed almost 10,000 people from the general population of Scotland who were tested for general cognitive ability and had their DNA analyzed. The results of the study indicated that even among people who never develop autism, carrying genetic traits associated with the disorder is, on average, linked to scoring slightly better on cognitive tests. Researchers found further evidence of a link between autism-associated genes and intelligence when they carried out the same tests on 921 adolescents who were part of the Brisbane Adolescent Twin Study. As the study leader of the University of Edinburgh’s Division of Psychiatry Dr Toni-Kim Clarke explained: “Our findings show that genetic variation which increases risk for autism is associated with better cognitive ability in non-autistic individuals. As we begin to understand how genetic variants associated with autism impact brain function, we may begin to further understand the nature of autistic intelligence.”
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