Could household disinfectants be contributing to the growing number of children who are overweight or obese? A new study finds antimicrobial and antibacterial agents affect gut microbiome، as the Technical Times said.
The surprising discovery was made by researchers from the University of Alberta who studied data from AllerGens' Canadian Healthy Infant Longitudinal Development or CHILD to investigate the link between cleaning products and overweight children. They examined exposure of children to three categories of household cleaners: disinfectants، detergents، and eco-products. The study was published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. The researchers، who tracked 727 children، found that frequent use of disinfectants، including baby wipes، increases the risk of obesity in young children. Children from homes that use disinfectants at least twice a week are likely to have higher levels of the gut microbes Lachnospiraceae، the bacteria linked with obesity، at 3 to 4 months old compared to families that do not use common household cleaners as frequently. At 3 years old، these same children have higher body mass compared to those who were not exposed to the heavy use of disinfectants at home as infants. "We didn't just find an association،" said principal investigator Anita Kozyrskyj. "Our 'mediation' statistical analysis suggests that a gut microbiome enriched with Lachnospiraceae early in infancy was likely directly responsible for children becoming overweight or obese."