Spring may be on its way, but we're still not in the clear when it comes to cold and flu season. Germs are still lurking everywhere, so take a few minutes to disinfect the things you touch every day at work, in your home, and in your car.
In Your Car
Pens, stapler, and other office supplies
Buttons on calculator, printer, and fax machine
Reusable water bottle
Light switches on walls and on lamps
Buttons on microwave, coffee maker, remote control, etc.
Handle to the fridge
Interior buttons for the radio, windows, and heat/AC
It is not only a common courtesy to wipe down machines and equipment after using them, it is a posted rule at many gyms. I am not sure about your gym, but I am fairly certain that most of my fellow gymmates are not pulling their weight (pun intended) and cleaning up after themselves. Have you ever thought of wiping them off before you use them? I am a germ-a-phobe and with flu season raging on, I have started to wipe off equipment, focusing on handles and buttons, before I use it. It may be a little anal, but it's better than catching a nasty bug that someone else has.
A recent study from the University of Arizona has found that a woman's workspace could contain up to four times the germs than those of her male counterpart. Despite her potentially neat appearance, a woman's desk typically has more germ attracting things on it like lotions and/or purses. The women in the study also tended to keep snacks at their desk and food is a prime target of microorganisms.
The top spots for a man's germs: His wallet and his PDA. Neither of which are shocking as my husband (and most men) always reach for one or the other.
Interesting finding, but before you go getting all bent out of shape about being germier than your man, I do think it is important to point out that Clorox, the king of disinfectant companies, commissioned the study. The earth shattering suggestions to get rid of the germs: Use a hand sanitizer on hands and a disinfectant (like Clorox Wipes, perhaps) on surfaces -- Once-a-day should be sufficient.
There is definitely nothing wrong with killing a few more germs than you normally would but try not to get too bent out of shape about it.
I think we need to talk about the germ-infested cutting boards in your kitchen. All those cracks and crevices are housing millions of bacteria that could make you very sick.
Glass cutting boards are the most sanitary because they're the easiest to keep clean. You can even pop them in the dishwasher which is good news when it comes to ditching germs. Too bad they ruin your knife edges and make you crazy with their annoyingly loud chopping sound.
Wooden boards are easy on your knife and your ears, but tend to crack and get deep grooves so they are impossible to clean thoroughly.
You can always spring for bamboo cutting boards, which my friend YumSugar highly recommends since they're stronger than regular wood, but more expensive. Let Rachael Ray show you how to get stains off those boards using salt.
Whatever material you choose to chop on, they should be immediately washed after each use in hot soapy water and disinfect often. Want to know how? Then read more