How do bacteria affect human lives?
Bacteria interact and are a constant in our day to day lives, perhaps more than suspected. Bacteria are often thought of as bad, however this is untrue, there is also many types of ‘good’ bacteria. ‘Good’ bacteria can benefit us by simply helping our digestive system work and helping us in the process of fermentation.
Bacteria are extremely helpful in the production of many things such as fuel and medicine. But bacteria directly affect our production of food which, therefore, directly affects us. Without bacteria we wouldn’t have things like; cheese, sour cream and yoghurt. Bacteria are extremely helpful in the dairy industry as it works within food as a decomposer. Bacteria is needed in cheese as a starter culture, the culture grows in the milk, converting the sugar, lactose, into lactic acid giving the cheese the correct amount of moisture and the correct acidity. Cultures are also used in yoghurt, where it does a similar job as the one done in cheese. The culture is responsible for its taste, texture and once more, its acidity. The viscosity of the yoghurt is determined by its quantity of polysaccharide chains. Food products other than dairy which use bacteria in their production are; wine, dried meats and health food industries, where yeast, lactic bacteria and starter cultures are used. Bacteria doesn’t stop helping us with food there, some bacteria defend against harmful bacteria and aid digestion. These are all examples of bacteria benefiting human life. Bacteria even help destroy toxins and help the immune system mature (1)! However they’re bad bacteria often found in foods, products like milk can contain less beneficial bacteria which can be harmful. Most bacteria in milk comes from the skin of the cow and in production, however healthy cows equal less bacteria. This means in third world countries such as Uganda, where they often use unhealthy cows and goats as their main source of milk, more bacteria is...
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