Can you guess the dirtiest place in your house? According to researchers who spend their entire careers on this sort of thing, the kitchen is generally germ-central for the home.
While people spend a lot of time making sure the usual suspects like the bathroom are clean and tidy, they often neglect the one room where tiny particles of vegetables, raw meat, and eggs go to die, then come back as microscopic disease-spewing zombies.
Dr. Charles P. Gerba of the University of Arizona, who has been studying household bacteria since 1973, notes the risk of exposure to salmonella and campylobacter (one of the most common causes of food-borne illness) from an unclean cutting board:
“In most cases, it’s safer to make a salad on a toilet seat than it is to make one on a cutting board. There’re 200 times more fecal bacteria from raw meat on the average cutting board in a home than a toilet seat. Most people just rinse their cutting board, but poultry and raw meat can leave behind salmonella and campylobacter.”
Your kitchen sink can become a breeding ground for E. coli, salmonella, and other illness-causing bacteria stemming from food particles left over from rinsed dishes. This, again, means that you may be better off retrieving a fallen piece of food from the toilet than the kitchen sink.
Sponges and dishcloths get wet on a regular basis, making them prime locales for dangerous bacteria. These items have more E. coli and similar fecal-based bacteria than any other place in the home. A survey of 1,000 dishcloths and sponges by Dr. Gerba found that 10% of them contained traces of salmonella.
Dirty sinks plus dirty sponges equal dirty kitchen countertops. Countertops become a virtual germ nightclub for shady characters like E. coli, salmonella, and campylobacter to mingle and plan their next attacks.
When it comes to the refrigerator, the bottom shelf tends to attract more bacteria than anywhere else. Moisture and condensation drip from the shelves above and often infect innocent produce. Putting raw meat on the upper shelves to defrost doesn’t help much either.
Check out this article for more information about kitchen cleanliness from Dr. Gerba.
Call 480-941-2993 to find out how Custom Maid can help you keep your kitchen clean and healthy–the kind of place where you might want to cook and eat.