Keeping shoes on in the home could help prevent asthma in young children, new study reveals

Lisa Walden
Photo credit: Dougal Waters - Getty Images

From Country Living

Many of us do not agree with the idea of keeping shoes on in the home, but researchers from the National Institute of Health and Welfare in Finland have found that wearing outdoor footwear inside can contribute to countering the effects of asthma in children.

As part of the study, they analysed a range of bacteria in 1,400 homes across Finland and Germany and discovered that the microbiotas in the home contained a whole host of bacteria typically found in farm-like settings.

Senior researcher Pirkka Kirjavainen believes that the presence of such bacteria in the home could help children build an immunity to them and so prevent the development of asthma and allergies.

One way to encourage a manageable amount of bacteria indoors is by not removing your shoes before you enter.

"We now discovered that the presence of farm-like microbiota in an early-life home seemed to protect from asthma also in urban homes. The effect was not based on the presence of a large number of different microbial species but rather differences in the relative abundance of certain bacterial groups," Pirkka explains to The Metro.

Photo credit: Victoria J Baxter - Getty Images

The study also found that children with more siblings were also less likely to suffer from asthma. According to Asthma UK, 1.1 million children in the UK suffer with asthma, which can interfere with their school work, sports activities and often sleep.

Parents might not be too keen on the idea of mud on carpets and clean floors, but it could be good news for the health of your children. Maybe ask them to wipe their shoes on a mat first...

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