You're probably washing your hands all wrong

04 July, 2018, 18:58 | Author: Kara Nash
  • A study conducted recently by the US Department of Agriculture found that consumers don’t wash their hands correctly 97 percent of the time

According to the US Department of Agriculture, consumers are failing to properly present the due hygiene 97 percent of the time.

Improper hand washing can lead to a rise in foodborne illnesses, the study found.

The USDA study also offered guidelines on how to properly wash your hands before a meal or while preparing food. However, after the experts gathered the 383 participants, the results showed that barely 3 percent of them succeeded when doing it.

Researchers asked nearly 400 people to wash their hands in test kitchens and prepare food. The study was conducted by researchers from the University of Mauritius.

The study found that only 3 percent of participants followed all the necessary steps to properly wash their hands, and almost 50 percent of the time, participants spread germs.

The same study observed people's use of a food thermometer, which is recommended for cooking meat and poultry products. However, the second one did not have any guidance.

After the researchers reviewed the tapes, they realized that those who watched the video could manage better the meat thermometer when making the turkey burgers, than the others who didn't watch it. Other mistakes spotted were people's failure to get their hands wet and not use soap at all.


Since the researchers collected microbial samples from around the kitchen to see where MS2 from the raw meat ended up, the contamination from these lax hand-washing attitudes became bleedingly obvious.

"As a mother of three young children, I am very familiar with the mad dash families go through to put dinner on the table", Carmen Rottenberg, the USDA's Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety, said in a news release.

The CDC has some instruction on how to properly wash hands that you can use before and after eating.

As the report noted, the American Dental Association says people should rinse their toothbrush with tap water after every use and let it air dry.

After wetting the hands, close the water and softly apply soap to them.

And Luis Delgadillo with the USDA said drying your hands, versus just shaking them off, is a step that shouldn't be ignored. Be sure to lather the backs of hands, between fingers and under fingernails.

But because hand washing is often done hastily, or not at all, it's little surprise that food poisoning is common in the U.S. A proper wash of visibly dirty hands takes about as long as singing "Happy Birthday" twice.

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