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You probably wash your hands all wrong, says study



The US Department of Agriculture's study shows that most consumers do not wash their hands and rub them with soap for 20 seconds. This is the time recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which states that washing for shorter periods means that fewer germs are removed.

"Many" study participants did not even dry their hands with a clean towel.

The study involved 383 people in six test kitchens at Raleigh-Durham Metro in North Carolina and rural Smithfield, North Carolina, the USDA said

Poor hand washing practices led to cross-contamination, the study found. About half of the time, participants spread bacteria in spice containers while making burgers, and 1

1% spread bacteria in refrigerator handles.

"You can not see, smell, or feel bacteria," said Carmen Rottenberg, deputy Secretary of State for Food Safety at the USDA. "By simply washing your hands, you can protect your family and prevent bacteria from contaminating your food and key areas in your kitchen."

The results of the USDA study indicate that our hand washing habits are deteriorating. A 2013 study from Michigan State University found that only 5% of people had their hands washed properly.
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What is it? right way to wash your hands? The CDC has some tips, starting with one obvious step: moistening hands with clean, running water.

Step 2: After wetting the hands with water, close the faucet and apply soap

Step 3: Hands by rubbing lather them together with the soap. Make sure to lather the back of your hands, between your fingers and under your fingernails.

Step 4: Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. (Sing the Alphabet Song or "Happy Birthday" twice.)

Step 5: Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.

Step 6: Dry hands with a clean cloth or dry them in the air

A separate study released this month found 49 out of 100 tested towels showed growth of bacteria normally found in or on the human body. These included E. coli and Staphylococcus aureus, often referred to as "staphylococci".
The bacteria were more likely to be found on wet towels and towels for more than one purpose, such as wiping work surfaces and utensils and drying hands, according to the study, by researchers from the University of Mauritius

Proper hand washing is one of the easiest ways avoiding food-borne diseases that the CDC estimates will kill 48 million Americans annually. This leads to about 128,000 hospital admissions and 3,000 deaths.


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