Saturday, 17 November 2018

The Health Benefits of Beards?

"Kissing a man with a beard is a lot like going to a picnic. You don't mind going through a little bush to get there!"
Minnie Pearl

I've been bearded most of my life. When I got married almost 40-years ago, I was bearded, and other than a couple of very brief periods since then (when I apparently lost my mind), I am bearded still today. When people ask me about my beard, I've often answered something to the effect of, "I wear a beard for religious purposes. I figure that, if God gave me the ability to grow a beard, He must have meant me to have a beard." Makes sense to me.

Once when I gave that explanation at a family gathering, an uncle retorted, "God also gave you the ability to father hundreds of children, but He probably didn't mean for you to do so." Fair enough, but as he himself was suffering from beardlessness, I realised that he wasn't likely able to understand these deeper religious mantras, and so I left the subject alone.

Yes, I am being a little facetious. 😉

It would seem now that there is another very good reason for men to exercise their God-given ability to grow and wear a beard … health.

According to a study published in the Journal of Hospital Infection, beards contain a type of bacteria which apparently promotes the development of important antibiotics. The study tested facial swabs of 408 bearded and beardless hospital staff. The results? Beardless men were more than three times as likely to be carriers of Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA), and ten percent more likely to suffer from food poisoning and respiratory illnesses than their bearded brothers.

Well there you have it. In other words, beards may actually help to promote men's health.

Photo Credit: Flickr Creative Commons

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