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Do your kid a favor: Smother him in germs

If you're one of those germ-a-phobes who refuse to let your kids do fun stuff like eat mud and gobble up Froot Loops off the floor you're doing little junior a big disservice.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor on

If you're one of those germ-a-phobes who refuse to let your kids do fun stuff like eat mud and gobble up Froot Loops off the floor you're doing little junior a big disservice.

muddykid.jpg
Photo via Ontario Cycling Association

Northwestern University reports:

A new Northwestern University study suggests that American parents should ease up on antibacterial soap and perhaps allow their little ones a romp or two in the mud --- or at least a much better acquaintance with everyday germs.

The study is the first to look at how microbial exposures early in life affect inflammatory processes related to diseases associated with aging in adulthood.

Most provocatively, the Northwestern study suggests that exposure to infectious microbes early in life may actually protect individuals from cardiovascular diseases that can lead to death as an adult.

Good to know my parenting score just went up. And since I'm prone to drop food and still woof it down I'm feeling pretty good about my immune system too.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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