Saturday, July 18, 2015

Anybody for eating out tonight?

It's something you touch every time you go in a restaurant. And you handle it first, so it's sort of like a germ-laden appetizer.

And I'm not talking about week-old sushi, either.

It's a bacteria magnet that's apt to have far more microbes on it than a toilet seat!

Give up?

It's the menu...

If you were planning to make a germ-transfer device, you couldn't do better than a restaurant menu. Everyone touches it, and it's almost never cleaned.

Dr. Chuck Gerba, a researcher from the University of Arizona, went undercover in three different states taking swab samples from frequently touched restaurant areas and items such as salt and pepper shakers, chairs, lemon slices and menus. And menus won the first prize, with a typical bacteria count of 185,000. To put that in perspective, Dr. Gerba said that's "about 100 times more bacteria" than is found on a typical toilet seat.

Other testing done by the New York University Microbiology Department found germy menus as well, but other results may surprise you. Ketchup bottles were relatively clean. But half the salt and pepper shakers
tested were contaminated. 

And the bathroom faucets and door knobs turned out to be the cleanest surface of all the places tested.

But the award goes to the lemon wedge. Believe it or not, half of the ones examined were contaminated with fecal matter. That might make iced tea the most dangerous thing on the menu!

Experts advise the same thing your mum said before EVERY SINGLE meal.

"Go wash your hands before you eat!" 

and I would add -- and after you read the menu!

Bon appetit !!!

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