Bacteria

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How Microbes Keep Chocolate On Store Shelves

About three decades ago, something devastating happened in Brazil. An infectious disease had struck the cacao trees and threatened to wipe out the population. Some 70% of these plants fell victim to this deadly ailment. The industry faced decimation. Officials tried to stop the progression but it was hopeless. The situation was becoming dire. If something wasn't done, chocolate was surely going to disappear. Researchers went into the fields of Brazil in the hopes of saving one of the most beloved foods on Earth.
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The Growth Of The Online Mattress Industry

The North American sleep industry is being turned on its head. Traditional brick-and-mortar coil mattress bed stores now compete with a growing online mattress trend driven by sleepers who research their buying decisions and make purchases based on social media and online reviews, and not by awkward 15-second lie-downs on bare mattresses in public.
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How Microbes May Control Our Body's Inner Clock

Though the circadian rhythm is hard to control directly, researchers have learned it can be trained indirectly through diet. By switching the timing and content of meals, we can change that inner clock to better reflect the world outside. How exactly food can change our rest patterns happens has been difficult to figure out yet over the past few years, one particular culprit has been identified: our microbial population.
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Probiotics May Help Alzheimer's Patients

The premise of a microbial-brain link suggests restoring gut microbial balance might be able to improve a healthy brain. Yet, figuring out the best method to accomplish this goal has been a challenge. One of the more promising routes involves fecal transplantation. Yet this method has yet to gain significant approval and has not been tested in regards to Alzheimer's disease.
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Discovering The Microbial Makeup Of Kefir

Depending on the species of bacteria used, the benefits of Kefir can range from antioxidant activity to immune balance and in some cases, prevention of tumours. Yet, while these benefits continue to be discovered, there is a caveat. The microbiological composition of kefir grains differs around the world meaning no two are going to provide the same benefits. This could lead to incorrect assumptions of the positive effects on health.
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5 Ways You Can Help Prevent The Post-Antibiotic Era

The concept of tolerance isn't relevant only in the microbial world. All biological life has the ability to tolerate, including humans. A perfect example of this phenomenon occurs in those able to eat hot, spicy foods. You might think they are simply born with stronger tongues. But that isn't the case. Instead, in most cases, a biochemical modification has occurred in one of the proteins found on the tongue.
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Indoor Plants Are Good for Your Health

All you have to do is bring Mather Nature indoors in the form of plants. For many Canadians, this isn't entirely a new concept. For decades, plants have been brought into the home and office to brighten up the mood and add some colour to an otherwise drab atmosphere. But the benefits are far greater than aesthetics.
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How Microbes Could Give You a Heart Attack

Twenty years ago, heart disease was the number one killer of Canadians. That number has dropped over the years thanks in part to research examining the causes of heart attacks and recommendations for better preventative behaviours. Despite this drop, there is still much to be learned about how heart attacks happen. One of the most studied causes is the atherosclerotic lesion, better known as plaque. This accumulation of cells, fats, minerals, and other organic material tend to accumulate in the arteries as we age. If buildup happens to occur in the coronary artery, cardiac arrest may inevitably happen.