257. Feeding the Uninvited Guests – Why putting on weight is so damned unfair

This is com­pletely unsci­en­tific. I don’t know the vices of microbes. I am told that I have tens of tril­lions of the bug­gers in my gut, and through my body. “Accord­ing to a recent National Insti­tutes of Health (NIH) esti­mate, 90% of cells in the human body are bac­te­rial, fun­gal, or oth­er­wise non-human” (http://mpkb.org/home/pathogenesis/microbiota ). So there are way more of them than all the cells which make me into me. I didn’t ask them in, and clever sci­en­tists insist that I’d cease to be me if whole armies of these layabouts didn’t hang out in the draughty cor­ri­dors of my frame. OK guys, so appar­ently we need each other. But I have deep sus­pi­cions about your habits. You, my fren­emy microbes, get a lit­tle peck­ish and push the but­ton for a bell-hop to bring in a snack, then another and another. It’s worse than that. You have the hotel man­ager (ergo, me) so trained as a slave that I bring you more goo than you know what to do with. By rights that should go straight down the dis­posal chute, but no, I stuff it away in every spare cor­ner, just in case you greedy lit­tle sods press the ser­vice bell in the mid­dle of the night. Now I’ve got your num­ber though, I’ve sussed you out. You just love bread, or what­ever bread turns into – prob­a­bly sugar. I eat a slice of bread and you’ll dou­ble its weight in my gut. What are you doing? Breed­ing like house flies? I dunno’, but I’m damned if I’m going to feed your bread lust. O.K., just a slice now and then before I rush off to clean my teeth and get the deli­cious taste out of my mouth. Hey, I’m win­ning, you are los­ing. I’ve kept us both pretty trim.


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