Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Germy Mistakes I Never Thought Of . . .

This caught my attention on AOL Health News this morning. Ewwwww!

5 Germy Mistakes You’re Making Everyday

By Glamour Jan 11th 2011 2:45PM

You wash your hands frequently, do your best to avoid coughing strangers, and generally consider yourself to be a germ-avoiding pro. Still you may be surprised at five little things you’re doing that may be leaving you susceptible to harmful bacteria and viruses.

1. Fruit peels: You buy lots of fruit to eat — bonus points! But, when it comes to fruit you peel (think: bananas, oranges), do you ever wash them first? If you grab that banana, peel it, then handle the fruit as you eat it, you’re potentially putting harmful bacteria right in your mouth. Think of all the people who handled that banana: the banana farmer in another part of the world, the guy at the grocery store who stocked the bunch, 19 customers who picked over it to get to the greener bunch they wanted, the checker at the market, the bagger — and then you!

2. The handles/railings in your house: Did your roommate have a cold this week? Sure, you kept your distance and washed your hands frequently, but did you think to wipe down the stair rails and doorknobs? Using a little hot soapy water or a light bleach solution (like Clorox Anywhere Spray) on frequently touched surfaces can keep you extra protected.

3. Your shoes: Do you keep your shoes on in your house? Yes, this is a controversial issue — those who like to keep their shoes on, thankyouverymuch, may take offense to rhetoric about removing shoes at the door. But, there has been a mounting amount of research in the past years indicating that what we track in on the bottom of our souls could be making us sick — from chemicals lingering on sidewalks and roads to the microbes you picked up in the public restroom. In fact, some health experts consider taking shoes off in your home as a way that anyone can improve their health. Even the super-doc Dr. Mehmet Oz suggested this year that it was on his top-5 list of things he’d recommend people do. So take those shoes off, darlings!

4. Touching your face: We all do it — a scratch here, a nose rub there. But every time we’re touching our face (especially our nose, mouth and eyes), we’re giving germs a free ride into our bods. Even if you can be a teensy bit more aware of when you touch your face throughout the day, you can reduce your germ exposure. No, don’t be compulsive about it, but if you avoid rubbing your eyes now and then, you’re doing your body a good service.

5. The water glass in the bathroom: When’s the last time you sent it for a run in the dishwasher? How about now? Frequently used items like glasses — especially when shared or left out on a countertop where droplets can accumulate from various sources — can be a breeding ground for germs. Wash those glasses frequently, and don’t share them!

January 14, 2011 - Posted by | Health Issues, Hygiene


  1. “Eeeeewwwwwwwwww!!” is right! I’m guilty of the fruit thing. Just thinking about having eaten a banana earlier today is giving me the heebie jeebies. ;0
    The shoe thing is somewhat cultural, I think. Canadians tend to expect people to remove their shoes at the door and I remember how uncomfortable I felt the first time I visited American friends and they wouldn’t let me take my shoes off at the door… though I suppose the bare feet I prefer in my house isn’t much better!

    P.S. Saw AdventureMan today. He didn’t appear to have you in his pocket so I’m assuming you’re at home. Hope you’re well and enjoying the ever more perfect nest. =)

    Comment by DaisyMae | January 14, 2011 | Reply

  2. Daisymae, your shoes will have a lot more germs and nasty stuff on than your bare feet. Unless you are walking on city streets barefoot, of course.

    Removing shoes makes so much sense.

    I have an whole blog on this subject: Shoes Off at the Door, Please You might like to take a look.

    Comment by Matthew C | January 14, 2011 | Reply

  3. The japanese, the iranian leave their shoes outside, even the Kuwaity diwania ( the old days ) not anymore.
    life become more complicated now..

    Comment by Hayfa Almughni | January 14, 2011 | Reply

  4. DaisyMae – I am so thankful he made it to church! I am still hoping to get to Kuwait for a short visit; it’s not a sure thing. It is a sure thing that if I get there, you will see me at church. 🙂

    My thing was the glass in the bathroom, and it never occurred to me about the germs that get thrown around every time the toilet gets flushed, although I do keep my toothbrush put away . . .

    Thanks for your input, Matthew.

    Interesting, huh, Haifa? Sometimes, we turn back to the old ways. I was thinking today how complicated it would be with the shoes we wear these days. If we only wore one or two pair, it would be different, but I have a LOT of shoes (and I know YOU do!) so if we were to go the no-shes-in-the-house/diwaniya route, do we keep ALL our shoes in cubbies by the door? Maybe build a special shoe-room by the door?

    Comment by intlxpatr | January 14, 2011 | Reply

  5. Lol, we have to build ” shoe dewania ” to store our shoes with color, brand, size, summer or winter. organize it by code then we need filling system . more job to be created and more volunteer. more security officers…

    Comment by Hayfa Almughni | January 14, 2011 | Reply

  6. LLLLOOOOLLLLLLL! And a card catalog, so we can find them!

    Comment by intlxpatr | January 15, 2011 | Reply

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