My grandmother you used to say that you can’t worry about germs and live in a completely germ-free world. Children in particular need to come in contact with so many germs to build up their immunity to make it stronger. Though her theory may have been based on an old wives’ tale, it also had some merit according to one study when it comes to the germiest things you touch.
Early Exposure May Benefit Young Children to the Germiest Things
This theory of the value of young children being exposed to their share of dirt and germs is referred to as the “hygiene hypothesis.” What the research demonstrated was being too clean at such an early age hindered the child’s immune system from developing their natural protection from common ailments that affect it such as allergies and asthma.
You might compare this to the effect of digesting probiotics, the living microorganisms that help in the intestinal track to keep your body running smoothly. Including probiotics in your diet can boost the good bacteria that thrive in your gut while curbing the bad bacteria that bring about gastrointestinal illnesses.
Introducing probiotics into your life is how a particular living form of bacteria can work to the body’s advantage. The best probiotics that you want in your life as ones such as yogurt, buttermilk and cottage cheese. Fermented milks like acidophilus milk and kefir, which is a sour yogurt drink that is combination of milk, grains, bacteria and yeast.
The ideal way to fire up the power behind probiotics is also including prebiotic foods in your diet. You might compare probiotics to the active seeds you want to plant in your body that defends against some thousand or so different bacteria found in your intestines while prebiotics are the nourishment feeding the live probiotic microorganisms.
While probiotics and prebiotics are the healthy ways to acquaint your system with beneficial bacteria, this does not mean you should take germs, viruses and other harmful bacteria lightly. In fact, you may be surprised at the worst germiest things you can touch and why you should be take special care of cleaning them.
One of the top offenders in the rank for germiest things you touch is your cell phone. Think how many times you touch that phone and lay it down in a multitude of places that are less than sanitary without washing your hands or that phone. You can cough on it or sneeze and contaminate the surface you touch even further to build up a germ army waiting to attack.
Your desktop is another of the germiest things you touch with your computer and keyboard. That desktop accumulates even more bacteria once you eat at your desk, cough, sneeze, spill something, sort mail, write, etc. If you tend to leave your handbag on or inside your desk or other people drop theirs while talking to you, think of all the other places it may have been left. The most disgusting place I have ever seen was watching women dropping them on the floor of a public rest room, where a toilet probably overflowed at one time or another.
Speaking of the office, the breakroom is a potential landmine when it comes to the germiest things you can touch within it. For example, the microwave and refrigerator handle or buttons as well as the faucet where you get the water for your coffee, tea, etc. are a germ-fest. How many times have you ever seen it cleaned and then used by co-workers with less than ideal clean habits?
Some people at your workplace always don’t wash their hands after visiting the restroom and then may head to make a cup of coffee or use the refrigerator or microwave. I heard something even worse of a man carrying a tub of popcorn into the bathroom. He placed it on the sink within close proximity of the urinal before exiting. Later, he went to fill his empty container again in a giant bag of popcorn in that breakroom. Need I say more?
The coffee machine can harbor yeast and mold when left without proper maintenance. Ask yourself when was the last time it was cleaned or someone assigned to that task in your office? This is just one example that later make you sick.
Shopping carts are nasty carriers of E. coli. Therefore, it is a good idea to always take advantage of a cleansing wipe to clean the handle of those carts. According to one study, 80-percent of shopping cart handles may contain that disgusting, E. coli. If that high E. coli count shocks you, then think about all the children that you see sitting in that top shelf of the cart. As we all know, children are not the cleanest people on the planet. They sit there and so do groceries. Mothers and fathers touch them and that shopping cart handles and spread more E. coli to share with everyone else.
Money is another of the germiest things you can touch with all the hands that crossed its path. Think of all the bacteria that are also passed onto you or one of the credit cards or other cards in your wallet.
If you use the ATM machine at a bank, you press the enter key. Can you imagine how many other people touched that key before you sharing a hoard of germs with you?
Public rest rooms are notorious germ-breeding factories from opening the door, toilets to drying your hands, especially with a hot air dryer that is often your only option.
Your best defense is sanitary wipes to wipe surfaces, buttons and handles more often, more frequent hand washing with soap and water before touching them can help.
Hopefully, I did not scare you about the germiest things you touch. My goal was just to enlighten you about these health risks in plain view.