Is showering everyday bad for you? New research says yes

Would you give it up all together?

Sarah Young
Thursday 26 January 2017 12:06 GMT
New research suggests that taking a shower every day might not be good for you
New research suggests that taking a shower every day might not be good for you

While some of us like to start our morning off with a shower others use it as a chance to unwind but, according to new research, there’s no need to feel bad if you skipped yours altogether.

We’re well aware that not washing for a few days can leave you feeling grimy and, let’s be honest, a bit smelly too but it turns out that showering too often can actually do more harm than good.

According to the Genetic Science Centre at the University of Utah, over-cleaning can damage the human microbiome – a collection of bacteria, viruses and other microbes that live in and on your body.

These are essential to our health and the university suggests that “disrupting our microbial ecostystems can cause disease.” As a result, your immune system, digestions and even your heart could suffer.

The study of the Yanomami village in the Amazon revealed that people who lived there had a far richer community of microbes in their skin and “the highest diversity of bacteria and genetic functions ever reported in a human group.”

They even harboured bacteria which carried antibiotic resistance, despite having no known contact with antibiotics.

While the research concluded that westernisation aka overzealous, shampoo-scrubbed lifestyles signifincatly affects the human microbiome diversity but what it couldn’t tell us was how often we should actually be showering.

While the thought of giving up showering completely doesn’t sound too appealing, some people have given it a go.

Take James Hamblin, senior editor of The Atlantic for instance who recorded his journey towards kicking cleaning all together in an article published in June 2016.

“At first, I was an oily, smelly beast,” Hamblin wrote, but it wasn’t long before his body started to adjust.

“After a while... your ecosystem reaches a steady state, and you stop smelling bad. I mean, you don't smell like rosewater or Axe Body Spray, but you don't smell like B.O., either,” Hamblin said.

“You just smell like a person.”

Would you embrace your natural stench?

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in