Missing Microbes: How the Overuse of Antibiotics Is Fueling Our Modern Plagues

Tantor Media Inc

Narrated by Patrick Lawlor

8 hr 43 min

Tracing one scientist's journey toward understanding the crucial importance of the microbiome, this revolutionary book will take listeners to the forefront of trail-blazing research while revealing the damage that overuse of antibiotics is doing to our health: contributing to the rise of obesity, asthma, diabetes, and certain forms of cancer. In Missing Microbes, Dr. Martin J. Blaser invites us into the wilds of the human microbiome, where for hundreds of thousands of years bacterial and human cells have existed in a peaceful symbiosis that is responsible for the health and equilibrium of our body. Now this invisible eden is being irrevocably damaged by some of our most revered medical advances-antibiotics-threatening the extinction of our irreplaceable microbes with terrible health consequences. Taking us into both the lab and deep into the fields where these troubling effects can be witnessed firsthand, Blaser not only provides cutting-edge evidence for the adverse effects of antibiotics, he tells us what we can do to avoid even more catastrophic health problems in the future.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Tantor Media Inc
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Published on
Sep 30, 2014
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Duration
8h 43m 35s
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ISBN
9781494575564
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Language
English
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Genres
Health & Fitness / General
Health & Fitness / Health Care Issues
Science / General
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Eligible for Family Library

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In this landmark book of popular science, Daniel E. Lieberman—chair of the department of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University and a leader in the field—gives us a lucid and engaging account of how the human body evolved over millions of years, even as it shows how the increasing disparity between the jumble of adaptations in our Stone Age bodies and advancements in the modern world is occasioning this paradox: greater longevity but increased chronic disease.
 
The Story of the Human Body brilliantly illuminates as never before the major transformations that contributed key adaptations to the body: the rise of bipedalism; the shift to a non-fruit-based diet; the advent of hunting and gathering, leading to our superlative endurance athleticism; the development of a very large brain; and the incipience of cultural proficiencies. Lieberman also elucidates how cultural evolution differs from biological evolution, and how our bodies were further transformed during the Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions.
 
While these ongoing changes have brought about many benefits, they have also created conditions to which our bodies are not entirely adapted, Lieberman argues, resulting in the growing incidence of obesity and new but avoidable diseases, such as type 2 diabetes. Lieberman proposes that many of these chronic illnesses persist and in some cases are intensifying because of “dysevolution,” a pernicious dynamic whereby only the symptoms rather than the causes of these maladies are treated. And finally—provocatively—he advocates the use of evolutionary information to help nudge, push, and sometimes even compel us to create a more salubrious environment.

(With charts and line drawings throughout.)
A bold new remedy for the sprawling and wasteful health care industry Where else but the doctor's office do you have to fill out a form on a clipboard? Have you noticed that hospital bills are almost unintelligible, except for the absurdly high dollar amount? Why is it that technology in other industries drives prices down, but in health care it's the reverse? And why, in health care, is the customer so often treated as a mere bystander-and an ignorant one at that? The same American medical establishment that saves lives and performs wondrous miracles is also a $2.7 trillion industry in deep dysfunction. And now, with the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), it is called on to extend full benefits to tens of millions of newly insured. You might think that this would leave us with a bleak choice- either to devote more of our national budget to health care or to make do with less of it. But there's another path. In this provocative book, Jonathan Bush, cofounder and CEO of athenahealth, calls for a revolution in health care to give customers more choices, freedom, power, and information, and at far lower prices. With humor and a tell-it-likeit- is style, he picks up insights and ideas from his days as an ambulance driver in New Orleans, an army medic, and an entrepreneur launching a birthing start-up in San Diego. In struggling to save that dying business, Bush's team created a software program that eventually became athenahealth, a cloud-based services company that handles electronic medical records, billing, and patient communications for more than fifty thousand medical providers nationwide. You'll learn how: • Well-intended government regulations prop up overpriced incumbents and slow the pace of innovation. • Focused, profit-driven disrupters are chipping away at the dominance of hospitals by offering routine procedures at lower cost. • Scrappy digital start-ups are equipping providers and patients with new apps and technologies to access medical data and take control of care. • Making informed choices about the care we receive and pay for will enable a more humane and satisfying health care system to emerge. Bush's plan calls for Americans not only to demand more from providers but also to accept more responsibility for our health, to weigh risks and make hard choices-in short, to take back control of an industry that is central to our lives and our economy.
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