A blog post over at NPR highlights the work of Sharyn Clough, a philosopher of science (that’s a job?) at Oregon State University. Clough postulates that keeping kids clean during their youth may be a factor in auto-immune diseases they develop later in life (links are theirs):
Women have a higher rate of asthma than men — 8.5 percent compared to 7.1 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. They’re also more likely than men to have allergies. And the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Associationsays autoimmune disorders affect women three times more often than men.