Have you heard of the 5 second rule? I think most of us have nowadays and not only that, most have also used it especially on sweets and chocolate.  I mean really that would otherwise be a total waste right?  For those unaware the 5 second rule literally means that food dropped on the floor if picked up straight away (within 5 seconds) is normally safe to eat.

(Pictured above Horseradish, Cheddar and Smoked Salmon Toasted Sandwich)

I’ve generally worked with this of course depending on what and where food is dropped.  Anything dropped in the streets is a no go but in the home especially when I have just cleaned it is generally okay.  It also depends on the food dropped.  Spilt soup or melted chocolate will not be licked off the floor but cleaned and then the floor sprayed with dettol and given a wipe.  We don’t wear shoes in the house which helps keep it that much cleaner thankfully.  My thoughts have always been that a few germs won’t kill you and if anything they will help improve the ability of our immune system.

Today the 5 second rule was given the all clear by scientists.  This is thanks to germ expert Anthony Hilton from Aston University.  Although it can never been entirely risk free as it depends on the floor in many cases and an obviously filthy floor should never been eaten off – basic common sense.  Going with common sense you will of course also check the item you have dropped prior to eating it to make sure there are no obvious signs of dirt.  In many cases it is safe to eat a dropped sweet from a clean floor although it has also been shown that germ transfer can occur within less than 5 seconds.  As a rule I would say only do this in your own home when you know you have cleaned the floor very recently (we only have wooden floors and stone tiled floors which are far easier to clean.).  Do not eat off wet floors as this can speed up germ transfer, this rule also applies to moist foods.  If you have pets it all goes out of the window, don’t eat anything off the floor as they walk inside and outside spreading a large range of bacteria as they go that you really don’t want to welcome any of those into your body to cause havoc.

What do you think?

Have you ever used the 5 second rule?

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62 thoughts on “Germ Scientists Approve 5 Second Food Rule!”

  1. Hah, yes I’m guilty of using the 5 second rule to my advantage! I agree with what you’ve put though because it’s a common-sense kind of thing; if you’ve got pets or the floor is gross, then it’s pretty gross to eat something off of it!


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  2. I saw this on the news the other day and even though the scientists gave the ok I tend to get sick quite easily and just can’t find myself even adopting a one second rule. The kids on the other hand will eat whatever I may drop within the 5 second rule.

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  3. I saw this on the news the other night and it made me chuckle how many people use the 5 second rule and that scientists have actually been testing it too! I’m guilty of working to it (depending on the food and the floor too of course)

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  4. I’m the same with the five second rule, that it depends on where and what it is! Interesting to think that it has actually been approved now and always handy to know!

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  5. Yeah I totally agree that it really depends on where the food fell for that 5 second rule. But for our little ones, as much as possible, don’t let them eat it because their tummy is still sensitive to germs. For adults like us, it’s fine.

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  6. I’ve never heard of the 5 seconds rule to be honest, it’s a bit like refereeing a football match though in regards to whether or not to allow extra-time…it depends on the circumstances and whether or not you are influenced by the crowd ie. who’s watching? 😉

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