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Evolution may explain rise in diseases
Doubting Thomas
[url]http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20100111/sc_livescience/ongoingevolutionmayexplainmysteriousriseindiseases[/url]

That is, ongoing evolution, contrary to what the fundies say about nobody witnessing evolution occurring today.
Edited by Doubting Thomas on 01/11/2010 16:36
You're just jealous because the voices are talking to me and not you.
 
Hypatia
I think that's really interesting. So many theists love to reiterate over and over again that evolution is just a theory. But we know now that evolution is a theory and a fact, and now it's great to know that medicine is looking closely at the link between evolution and medicine.

 
catman
DT: That really is interesting. Thanks for the link.

When I hear some imbecile spout that 'evolution is only a theory', I always think to myself, 'So is gravity, and I don't hear any of you numbskulls doubting that'.
 
derF
One of the biggest problems facing mankind is our fear of contracting some kind of disease. An immune deficiency. And we increase the possibility of acquiring this deficiency by constantly trying to kill every microbe, germ, bacteria or virus that we come in contact with. In doing so we create germs, bacteria, viruses and microbes that are increasingly resistant to the materials we use to destroy them. We are, in effect, creating a class of super viruses that we will no longer have antibiotics and germicides capable or destroying them. Rather than relying on our own, well developed, immune defenses, we have foolishly disregarded our own bodies' abilities to confront and destroy invading illnesses and have instead cut our own throats by trying to out wit hundred of thousands of years of evolved genetic immunity and in doing so are creating contagions that our own natural defenses are unable to combat.
I'll drink to that. Or anything else for that matter.
 
Doubting Thomas
Yes, that's why I don't use antibacterial soap or hand sanitizer that often. We've become such a germ-free society that we've lost the immunities to all these germs that do survive.
You're just jealous because the voices are talking to me and not you.
 
Cynic
While I avoid antibacterial soaps and stuff and try to minimize use of antibiotics for those reasons, there has to be a balance of reason too. One of the reasons diseases like this are on the rise is because there are simply more people and less isolation. It's also important to note that while viral infections will go away on their own (usually), secondary bacterial infections often don't. Historically, such infections have killed by the millions and we only hear from people who have had them and shrugged them off on their own because they're here to talk about it. In addition to taking longer, the longer a bacterial infection persists, the more damage it might do, some of which might be irreversible, as with ear infections. I don't consider it coincidental that my own hearing has always registered as perfect on tests and I've never had a middle ear infection in my life (only two outer ear infections, and those were in my 30s), while all the people I know who reported having had a lot of those growing up all have crap hearing by comparison. And then of course is the very real danger of pneumonia and bronchitis/"asthma" conditions that could have been prevented. Infections damage tissue and generally, that tissue is never the same again.

The flip side of not treating bacterial infections, beyond those dangers, is also that prolonged infection means prolonged exposure to others. Generally we're talking about bacteria that we all have anyway run amok, but not always.

I dunno. As someone with little kids just starting to go to schools and day-cares and stuff, it's lately been far easier to count the days where one of us isn't sick than is. It sucks ass, but eventually you learn to treat kids as soon as freaking possible. I myself generally hold out a few weeks before seeking help, and I think that's starting to take it's toll. Lately I've had chronic bronchitis for the first time ever, and I think I have a single viral infection to thank for it. As easy as it is to be cavalier as adults though, you can't be with kids, if only because if you actually follow the rules concerning illness and school attendance, you children will repeat every grade twice until they're in junior high. Smile
Edited by Cynic on 01/13/2010 11:41
 
Sinny
Since I stopped smoking cigarettes I stopped getting Bronchitis. When I do get sick it's much less often now and the ear infections are much less too. I'm not saying that's why people get sick just that for me it was a main factor. I always use sanitizing soap and always will. For myself along with not smoking washing my hands frequently with sanitizing soap also helped me to get sick much less often. My genes aren't that strong for me to take the risk. It's nice to finally go through a winter without bronchitis and strep throat. Smile

We are crammed in like a can of sardines most of our lives now. I hate to say it but we have a lot more foreigners too who sometimes carry their germs and diseases from their Country. Just as I'm sure we do with ours to their Country. The world is smaller now than it was when we were growing up so it is part of the reason why we and especially the children get sick more often.
 
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