5 Second Rule: Is It Really True? | Dennispoint Campground MD

5-second rule: is it really true?

Food that has not been on the ground for more than 5 seconds can still be eaten without hesitation. If you have followed this rule so far, you should reconsider it in the future:


  • Scientists pay relatively little attention to the well-known 5-second rule. Several studies have looked at how quickly dangerous bacteria can find their way onto food that has been dropped on the floor.
  • The results of the studies are sobering. What matters is not so much the contact time of the food with the floor as the type of floor covering.
  • On the carpeted floors, the food had picked up less than 1% of the germs in 5 seconds.
  • However, it must be remembered that there are types of bacteria, even a very small number of which is enough to transmit disease.
  • With wooden and tiled floors, the result was much scarier. After five seconds, between 48 and 70% of the bacteria were in the food.
  • Of course, this result does not only apply to soils. Areas where raw meat and eggs have been handled, such as kitchen counters, are particularly dangerous.
  • Otherwise, in a clean home, there is usually not much danger if food falls on the floor. However, a residual risk must be considered.



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