Your body evolved in an environment that was vastly filthier than the one you now inhabit. As a result, living with all this good hygiene can actually cause real problems in cases where your body has come to depend on filth. Your gut expects to manage large numbers of parasitic whipworms, for example, and, for the sophisticated readers of this weblog anyway, this just isn’t the case. For people with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBDs), like Crohn’s disease, the gut is violently wrestling with an opponent that never showed up. Or that’s the theory proposed by gastroenterologist Joel Weinstock.
Weinstock had a brilliantly testable idea: feed IBD sufferers a diet of worms. The clinical results, as reported in this New Scientist article, are nothing short of astonishing. Seventy of the hundred Crohn’s sufferers in the study experienced complete remission of the symptoms. If this all holds up, you will soon be able to order a “drinkable concoction containing thousands of pig whipworm eggs” (this from the same company, no lie, that brings you quality medicinal maggots and leeches).
I sense an exciting new high-concept juice bar business opportunity. The “Old McDonald” will be a lightly frothed blend of wheat grass and pig whipworms that can be spooned right out of the barnyard.