Student Made Yoghurt Using Bacteria From Her Own Vagina - And Ate It

We'll be straight up with you on this one - after hearing about this, you're never going to think of yoghurt in the same way again. Consider yourselves warned.

Now, traditionally, yoghurt is made when bacteria converts lactose in milk to lactic acid, which not only thickens it, but also gives it a slightly tangy quality. So far, so good.

But one PHD student, Cecilia Westbrook, decided to go for a slightly unorthodox means of making her yoghurt - making it from her very own vagina.

Her friend, Janet Jay, wrote about the experiment for Vice, explaining: "She knew enough about the chemistry of the vagina to think that eating a batch of yogurt made from her ladyjuices would be good for her."

Jay said that the 'collection method' was done with a wooden spoon. Shudder.

"She set up a positive control (made with actual yogurt as the starter culture) and a negative control (plain milk with nothing added), and combined her own home-made ingredient to the third batch of yogurt.

"Left overnight, the magic of biology created a respectably-sized bowl.

"Her first batch of yogurt tasted sour, tangy, and almost tingly on the tongue. She compared it to Indian yogurt, and ate it with some blueberries."


While it doesn't sound too bad (albeit entirely repulsive), according to Larry Forney, a microbiologist at the University of Idaho, it wasn't exactly a great idea.

Forney said: "When you take vaginal secretions, you're not just taking the lactobacilli. You're taking everything."

Because of that, it's possible that from woman to woman, day to day, what you're using in your yoghurt is 'no longer dominated by lactobacilli but other bacteria, some of which could be pathogenic'.

Sometimes this imbalance causes yeast infections and other issues - which you wouldn't exactly want to end up on your breakfast.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Plus, even healthy vaginas can host organisms that can be problematic if cultured, too.

"It's a bad idea in general," Forney said, adding that it was at least a good thing that Westbook used bacteria from her own vagina.

"I like what she's doing in principle, but it's risky, because she doesn't know what else she's doing and she could end up with a bad batch," he added.

The US Food Drug and Administation have taken a similar stance, saying: "Vaginal secretions are not considered 'food', and they may transmit human disease, a food product that contains vaginal secretions or other bodily fluids is considered adulterated."

So there we go, here's one not to try at home - cue a collective sigh of relief from people across the world.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Jess Hardiman

Jess Hardiman is a journalist who graduated from Manchester University with a BA in Film Studies, English Language and Literature, and has previously worked for Time Out and The Skinny among others.

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