Snippet from the non-hair-loss article:
The human body is largely not human. It contains trillions of microbes that outnumber our own cells 10 to 1, affecting our health and behavior. Now, an international consortium of around 200 scientists has mapped this diverse microbial community at an unprecedented level of detail, and shown just how much it varies from person to person.
Read the rest in The Scientist — Microbial Menagerie
We (the scientific community) are accumulating massive amounts of data on what grows in our mouths and our gut, and learning that our guts contain a microbial menagerie of organisms that are different in each of us. They change within our guts often as mutations create variations in these bacteria. In disease, they are different than in normal people. We know that people with Chron’s disease and colitis have developed an “unhealthy” relationship with their gut bacteria.
We are also starting to believe that our gut bacteria may be useful in the diagnosis of impending problems in our health. Our bacteria carry out overlapping jobs, including creating and breaking down nutrients for us, and the population, even in newborns, may dictate the baby’s health. Babies show that microbiotic diversity changes very rapidly in the few days after birth, and the acquisition of unculturable bacteria expanded rapidly after the third day and probably contribute to the development of the baby’s immune system.
Some people proclaim that we are what we eat, but maybe we are what we grow and nurture inside our mouth and our gut, as much as what we eat.