Feel Good

The 5-Second Rule Debate Continues

Don’t eat off the floor—but it’s not as bad as it could be.

BY October 13, 2016


We thought we had debunked this whole 5-Second Rule myth a few weeks ago, but then someone had to come along and muck it all up again.

Dr. Aaron Carroll of Indiana University in The New York Times writes that he recognizes that the 5 Second Rule is bunk. But he eats fallen food off his kitchen floor all the time. Why? Because it isn’t so bad. As he points out, the kitchen floor is typically way cleaner than the refrigerator handle or kitchen counter, for example, along with a lot of other things we touch every day and don’t really think about. “If I drop food on the floor, I still eat it. I do that because the harm I might get from the floor is not worth my concern compared with many, many other things,” he writes.

OK, fine. We concede the point. If anything, this proves that our grandmother’s boast that her floors were so clean you could eat off them was probably true.


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