Catch up on the latest enviro-health headlines. Not all the news is bad — Bacteria in the dirt can make you happier! It’s just the chemicals and antibiotics that kill bacteria and everything else you have to worry about….

>> Dirt bacteria: Good for your mood and health. “Medical researchers in the United Kingdom have found evidence that “friendly” bacteria found in soil may activate the immune system, produce the brain compound serotonin and help ward off depression.”

>> Ethanol antibiotics: Bad for your health and the environment. “The ethanol process relies on copious doses of antibiotics to control the fermentation process — and distillers grains carry heavy traces of them into feedlot rations.” Are the antibiotic levels dangerous? The FDA official looking into this is staying mum on whether or not the antibiotics exceeded federal guidelines — guidelines that are shoddy to begin with.

>> Chemicals: Bad for sperm, pregnancies, and babies. Air pollution’s creating genetically defective sperm, leading to an uptick in miscarriages in India.

Photo: goldberg

A dirty happiness
Can playing in the dirt boost your seretonin levels? New science finds "friendly" bacteria can make us happier.