Founder's Note | Get Dirty! Posted on 02 Nov 10:35
When I was a kid, most days after school were filled with adventures in the neighborhood; riding bikes in the parks, crawling around in muddy creeks, exploring the world around us. When we’d eventually come home, we’d always be dirty. And we wore that dirt like a badge of honor. It meant success in some grand way - some new hill discovered, some dug-up cow bone we thought was a dinosaur, some new story to be told.
These days when the weather changes my eyes feel weird and itchy. And whenever I get my hands dirty there’s Purell nearby. As the NYTimes recently reported, “in recent decades, the prevalence of asthma and allergies has increased between two- and threefold in the United States. These days, one in 12 kids has asthma. More are allergic.”
It’s pretty simple. We have two parts of our immune system - the adaptive part and the innate part. Dirt has microbes and beneficial bacteria which stimulate the innate part of your immune system. And that part can be thought of as “use it or lose it.”
There’s of course a direct correlation to our food. Don’t look for the fruits and vegetables that are so perfect and clean they could have been printed out of machine. There is such a thing as too clean. Go for the apples in the farmers’ markets that have a little dirt on them. If they’re organically grown, don’t be afraid of the dirt.
I’ll steal a line from one my favorite childhood movies, The Sandlot: “I want you to get out into the fresh air and make some friends. Run around, scrape your knees, get dirty. Climb trees, hop fences. Get into trouble, for crying out loud. Not too much, but some. You have my permission.”
Love the dirt. It will love you back.
All is possible,