Segments in this Video

Allergies - Modern Life and Me: Introduction (01:08)


Approximately 1 in 3 people suffer from an allergy. This investigation into the allergy epidemic follows the lives of two highly allergic families.

Families with Allergies (02:48)

Cameras and GPS will follow Caroline, Freya, Joe, Danny, Dana, Paul, Morgan, and Jenson. Learn the array of allergies present in each family and the strategies they use to minimize allergy attacks.

Environmental Change (03:46)

Cases of allergies are on the rise in developed nations. Prof. Syed Hasan Arshad believes something in the environment is causing the increased allergies.

Disconnected from Nature (03:40)

Professor Graham Rook believes that modern living means less exposure to bacteria and fungi. Dr. Lindsay Hall will analyze the bacteria that the families come into contact with on a daily basis.

Allergic Reaction (03:06)

Allergist Dr. Adam Fox administers a skin prick test to identify allergies. Learn what happens during an allergic reaction.

Changes in Old Microbes (03:32)

Caroline describes Joe's allergic reaction while on the way to the doctor's. Dana describes Morgan's allergic reaction to milk. Rook explains that modern living prevents humans from contacting enough microbes.

"Old Friends Mechanism" (03:19)

Bacteria are a crucial component of the human body. While often thought of as a negative thing, bacteria are mostly beneficial.

Gut Bacteria Diversity (02:49)

Hall reveals the diversity of the families' bacteria samples. Compare the diversity of gut bacteria in tribal communities to those in developed nations.

Germ-Free Mice (03:39)

Associate Professor Ben Marsland raises germ-free mice in a lab. The mice are more prone to react to allergens.

Exposure to Bacteria (02:49)

Children raised on farms are less likely to develop allergies. Babies born vaginally are colonized by bacteria from the mother as they are born. Breast milk carries beneficial bacteria.

Bacteria from Birth (04:33)

Learn how the children's birth experiences and newborn health affected their bacteria levels. Low levels of certain bacteria are closely linked with allergies.

Lifestyles Impact Old Microbial Enemies (04:10)

Maladies such as tapeworms and tuberculosis caused the immune system to suppress so that the infection could thrive. The immune system ignored allergens.

Changing Gut Bacteria (03:30)

Probiotics are commercially available bacteria in the form of a food; prebiotics are a carbohydrate that promotes the growth of natural bacteria. A healthy and diverse diet that includes probiotics and prebiotics can prevent infection but may not cure existing allergies.

Indoor Lifestyle (03:40)

The father of one of the families, who spends his workday outside, had the most diversity of bacteria. Most families spend about eighty-five percent of their time indoors.

Hope for the Future (02:37)

The families reflect on changes they would like to make to their lifestyle. Reconnecting to outdoor bacteria is good for human health.

Green Spaces (02:25)

The recognition of the human body as an ecosystem is a crucial medical advancement. It may be possible to design outdoor spaces specifically for human health.

Credits: Allergies - Modern Life and Me (00:28)

Credits: Allergies - Modern Life and Me

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Allergies: Modern Life and Me

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $300.00
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $450.00
3-Year Streaming Price: $300.00



Allergies are on the rise and reaching epidemic proportions, but curiously only in the western world. Professor Graham Rook believes that the changes we have made to our environment are impacting our microbiome—the bacteria that live in and on every one of us—and that this is having a knock-on effect on our immune system. BBC Horizon puts the lives of two ordinary families under the microscope to see if the theory plays out in the real world. From their food to the way they wash their hands, will the experiment offer an insight into why allergies are increasing? A BBC Production.

Length: 53 minutes

Item#: BVL86502

ISBN: 978-1-60057-830-4

Copyright date: ©2014

Closed Captioned

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