Direct link to scholarships offered by  Govt. of India

List of Private NGOs offering scholarships

Abu Marwan Abdal Malik Ibn Zuhr: ‘Avenzoar’

Abu Marwan Abdal Malik Ibn Zuhr, known in the west as Avenzoar, was

Ummid Assistant

Delhi University launches web chat facility for admission seekers

Welcome Guest! You are here: Home » Health

Eating dirt can be good for the gut

Saturday June 04, 2011 09:28:51 AM, IANS

Washington: For many people all over the world, dining on dirt is nothing out of the ordinary. Now an extensive analysis helps explain why.

The most probable explanation for human geophagy, the eating of earth, is that it protects the stomach against toxins, parasites, and pathogens, the study suggests.

The first written account of human geophagy came from Hippocrates more than 2,000 years ago, says Cornell University researcher Sera Young, who led the study, reports the journal The Quarterly Review of Biology.

Since then, the eating of earth has been reported on every inhabited continent and in almost every country. Several hypotheses had been considered plausible. Some researchers think geophagy is simply a consequence of food shortage, according to a Cornell statement.

Accordingly, Young and her colleagues analysed reports from missionaries, plantation doctors, explorers, and anthropologists to put together a database of more than 480 cultural accounts of geophagy.

Overall, the protection hypothesis fits the data best, Cornell researchers found.

The database shows that geophagy is documented most commonly in women in the early stages of pregnancy and in pre-adolescent children.

Both categories of people are especially sensitive to parasites and pathogens, according to Young and her colleagues.

In addition, geophagy is most common in tropical climates where foodborne microbes are abundant. Finally, the database shows that people often eat earth during episodes of gastrointestinal stress.
 





 


 

 

  Bookmark and Share                                          Home | Top of the Page

 

Comments

Note: By posting your comments here you agree to the terms and conditions of www.ummid.com

Comments powered by DISQUS

 

 

 

Top Stories

Ramdev to begin fast Saturday as talks fail

Yoga guru Baba Ramdev Friday declared he was going ahead with his hunger strike against corruption and black money from Saturday   »

RSS behind Baba Ramdev's fast, says Digvijay Singh

Thousands come, drawn to Ramdev more than his cause

PM meets president, discusses Ramdev's proposed hunger strike

 

  Most Read

At least 25 dead, Syria demonstrators reach capital; Total internet blackout

Syrian security forces shot dead at least 25 people while dispersing tens of thousands of demonstrators in the central city of Hama today, activists said, as anti-regime  »

Yemeni President wounded in shelling on presidential palace in Sana'a

Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh and several high-ranking officials suffered injuries in shelling on the presidential palace in Sana'a Friday, Xinhua quoted a security official as saying. Saleh was slightly injured while Yemeni Prime Minister Ali Mujawar, Deputy Prime Minister  »

 

  News Pick

India, Pakistan need more time to resolve Siachen dispute: Antony

With India and Pakistan agreeing to continue their talks on the Siachen Glacier, Defence Minister A.K. Antony Friday said both  »

Mamata effect: Salaries on 1st, clean-up drives in hospitals

Suparna Nag couldn't believe her eyes when she updated her bank passbook on June 1. In her 15 years of career as a teacher in West Bengal, it was the first time that she got her salary on time, and that too just   »

Tamil Nadu announces freebies, welfare schemes

Tamil Nadu Governor S.S. Barnala Friday announced a slew of welfare measures, including free laptops, green housing scheme for poor and direct crediting  »

Tamil Nadu to 'nationalise' cable TV

Omani nationals walk 250 km for drug abuse awareness

Two young Omani nationals in a bid to create awareness on drug abuse in the country have walked a distance of 250 km. Khamis al Hatali and Helmi al Kindy were supported in their endeavour by the Al Hayat Association, an  »

Sukanya Roy wins America's coveted spelling bee crown

Spelling tongue twister "cymotrichous", Greek for having wavy hair, Indian American Sukanya Roy has won the 2011 Scripps National  »

 

Picture of the Day

The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh addressing the Joint Session of Ethiopian Parliament, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on May 26, 2011.

 

 
 
 
 
 

RSS  |  Contact us

| Quick links

News

 

Subscribe to

Ummid Assistant

 

National

Religion

RSS

Scholarships

About us

International

Culture

Twitter

Government Schemes

Feedback

Regional

History

Facebook

Education

Register

Politics

Opinion

Newsletter

Contact us

Business

Career

     

Education

       

 

 

Ummid.com: Disclaimer | Terms of Use | Advertise with us | Link Exchange

Ummid.com is part of the Awaz Multimedia & Publications providing World News, News Analysis and Feature Articles on Education, Health. Politics, Technology, Sports, Entertainment, Industry etc. The articles or the views displayed on this website are for public information and in no way describe the editorial views. The users are entitled to use this site subject to the terms and conditions mentioned.

© 2010 Awaz Multimedia & Publications. All rights reserved.