Im a doctor and didnt shower for five years – over washing could be harmful

Im a doctor and didnt shower for five years – over washing could be harmful

A health expert explained that spending too much time grooming could spell bad news for your health. Dr James Hamblin explained there’s a difference between cleanliness behaviour, which is more about personal and aesthetic preferences, and hygiene behaviours, which tend to be public health related.

In an interview with The Aspen Institute published on YouTube, the doctor said: “Those are actually pretty straightforward. When it comes to our daily rituals, you brush your teeth and that will prevent you from getting infections in your oral cavity.

“And you wash your hands and that will prevent you from seeding infection to your respiratory tract. Outside of that, most of the cleanliness behaviours… go together and signal… that you’re probably not carrying germs on your hands.

“But they don’t actually have anything to do with health. We see products in pharmacies and think they have this sort of health halo but they really are a preference.”

According to his calculations, if you spend half an hour showering and applying products every day, you will spend more than two years on grooming-related activities over the course of your lifetime. Worryingly, this could be harmful to your health.

READ MORE Over 750,000 Britons guilty of shower practice which could cause sight loss

In his book Clean: The New Science of Skin, Dr Hamblin explained that your skin is the first line of defence against diseases, meaning it already knows how to protect itself. The organisms and bacteria that live on your skin play an important role in your health.

However, the more you try to eliminate them, the more vulnerable you could become, according to the expert. This could have an impact on health problems like allergies to nuts, for example.

The doctor claimed that conditions like allergic rhinitis, asthma and eczema could be provoked by excessive use of antibacterial soap. However, other grooming products like shampoo, shower gel, and deodorants could also be to blame.

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If you’re worried about what will become of your odour after ditching these personal hygiene staples, Dr Hamblin explained that first and foremost humans are animals, and animals smell. He said: “We think that body odour is a given, but this too is an invention.

“Our feet ‘smell’ thanks to bacteria such as Bacillus subtilis, which has powerful antifungal properties. Marketers convinced the public that everyone should buy lots of soap.

“Capitalism doesn’t sell anything as effective as status. Soap has contaminated the general consciousness.”

While the doctor shared there’s nothing wrong with investing time and money in skincare and cleaning products, he suggested you could be “perfectly healthy in a medical way” and do radically less. “I don’t mean to say that one way is better or worse,” he added.

Instead of spending loads of money on grooming himself, the doctor keeps clean and healthy by using water to rinse off. That’s how the expert managed those five years without a shower.

However, he also suggested that rigorous hand washing with antibacterial soap, especially in the light of Covid, remains crucial. He told Australian morning talk show Today Extra: “That is very important.”

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