Rub Some Dirt on It

By Dhaanyia Bala Chandran

The Great Wall of China can be seen from space. Bulls hate the color red. Don’t swim with a full stomach.


All bogus lies.

Millions of mistaken beliefs flood our world. Although repeatedly debunked, many relentlessly believe in them. Somehow we’ve convinced ourselves of these misconceptions. Maybe we owe it to our stellar imagination, maybe it’s just downright naivety, or perhaps it’s just the maturation of the human brain. Either way, we still continue to believe in these contagious falsehoods.   

I lounged in Malay class. Everyone’s eyes glued to their screens. Mouths sealed. Silence hovered over us. Someone pulls out a sanitizer, and the class transforms into the seagulls from Finding Nemo.

Teens and adults obsess over feeling clean. Found at every corner, this knight in shining plastic infects ISKL. Every office. Every classroom. Every teacher’s desk.Our immune system will deteriorate thanks to our lord and savior — hand sanitizers.

We squirt it, feel the cool tingling sensation, and slowly spread it all over our hands. Washing our hands with the au naturale water and soap complicates our busy lives. Thanks goodness for the invention of hand sanitizers! Now instead of having to take those challenging steps to the bathroom, we just squeeze and spread.

Many of us have surfed pass articles with headlines, “why hand sanitizers are dangerous.” We, stubborn individuals instinctively ignore these articles because we resist to recognize our mistaken actions. Let me help put this into perspective for all us cleanliness-obsessed germaphobes. Hand sanitizers are hand grenades. It’s as simple as that.


We think using hand sanitizers are reducing our risk of falling sick. Instead, they weaken our immune system. The Epidemic Intelligence Service revealed employees routinely using hand sanitizers risked outbreaks of norovirus six times more than others.

The University of Michigan studied that triclosan, found in sanitizers, can cause bacteria to become resistant to antibiotics.

Over-sterilization benefits nobody. It reduces the bacteria our body needs to fight illnesses. A weakened immune system causes us to fall sick regularly. Consuming excessive antibiotics leads to bacterial resistance instead of fighting germs. If a plague looms again, the inadequate use of antibiotics could indicate the end of mankind.

We’re doomed.  

This vicious cycle endangers the human race. The real hero comes to our rescue. Josh Axe, a doctor of natural medicine, encourages, “Eat Dirt!”

For our ancestors, pulling a carrot out of the ground and eating it was common practice. Axe illuminates, by taking away water in our bodies, we’d be left with mostly dirt because we compose of the most abundant elements in the Earth’s crust.

For clarity, when I say “eat dirt,” I don’t mean scooping a handful of soil into your mouth. I mean the natural probiotics to soil-based organisms that help do wonders to our immune system. Axe assures they treat a wide range of health conditions.

One might argue that sanitizers are essential to combat infection as hands are one of the dirtiest parts of us. However, Lindsey Bordone, an expert on dermatology, elucidates that the, “majority of people will contract viruses by inhaling droplets in the air rather than touching contaminated surfaces.”

Maybe it’s the easy accessibility of hand sanitizers, or maybe our parents’ constant nagging for us to keep clean that pressures us to use it. Whatever it is, the impression that hand sanitizers creates a health safety bubble around us is a debunked misconception.  

We, at ISKL, have many privileges. This,however, doesn’t include the privilege to remain ignorant.

Resist the urge to disinfect every time a hand sanitizer sits at arm’s reach. Enlighten peers about the terrors of antibacterial products.

Time is NOW.

Press for change.

Let the transformation begin.

Let’s inspire.

Be the CHANGE.


Works Cited

  1. 3 News . (2017, February 27). Danger! shocking reasons to avoid frequent use of hand sanitizers. Retrieved March 01, 2018, from
  2. Zerbe, L. (2016, March 20). Why You Should Eat Dirt – Yes, Dirt! Retrieved March 01, 2018, from
  3. Toronto Star, C. G. (2009 , June 26). Hand sanitizer outcry masks deeper problems. Retrieved March 1, 2018, from
  4. Weintraub, Karen. “Do Hand Sanitizers Really Cut Down on Illness?” The New York Times, The New York Times, 12 May 2017,
  5. Hurly, Adam. “Listen Up, Germaphobes: The Argument Against Hand Sanitizer.” GQ, GQ, 27 Feb. 2018,


6 thoughts on “Rub Some Dirt on It

  1. Nava

    I love this! It is entertaining and educational. It is well written and is really persuasive. You really made me change my view on hand sanitizer.

  2. Christopher Goodman

    This is a well written, interesting piece. I agree completely with your sentiments and of course loved the bit about the bottles “infecting” the school.
    By the way you’ll find out more about antibiotics and antivirals if you stick with IB chem!

  3. Tanmay G.

    This is a really interesting take on the matter of over-sanitation. Connecting it back to the ISKL community was really effective in reaching you audience, especially with your sarcastic adjectives. I think the tone of this piece was just right as it was light enough for us to read, but straightforward as well so that we would think. Great article!

  4. Clarissa

    I loved your beginning! You started with nonsense which added humor towards the whole tone of the piece. Your whole piece is so humorous and sarcastic and you let your voice shine through. Not only that, with a pinch of logos, it makes your editorial intriguing and different.

  5. nina

    What an original topic! this was funny and educational, the perfect combination! really good

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