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Refillable water bottles dirtier than toilet seats, say treadmill reviewers

DH Vancouver Staff Sep 16, 2016 4:52 am

Your average drinking water bottle is more plagued with germs than a toilet seat, according to a new study by TreadmillReviews.Net.

The website swabbed three screw-tops, three slide-tops, three squeeze-tops, and three straw-tops each used by athletes for a week without washing them.

Lab results showed that on average slide-tops had the most viable bacteria cells, with 933,340 colony-forming units per sq. cm. But, only half those bacteria are harmful.

In contrast, the 161,971 colony-forming units found per sq. cm. on squeeze-tops and the 159,060 units found per sq. cm. on screw-tops were almost all harmless.

Overall, the cleanest water bottles were straw-tops, with an average of only 25.4 colony-forming units per sq. cm., and most of those were harmless bacteria.

Toilet seats vs. toothbrush holders

Surprisingly, according to researchers, the average toilet seat only has 27 colony-forming units per sq. cm. by comparison. Meanwhile, on average, toothbrush holders have 331,848 colony-forming units per sq. cm.

People, we need to talk about cleaning that bathroom a bit more often.

It is worth noting though, 12 bottles is a very small sample size and this study has not been replicated.

“Our hope is that our findings will help you make informed choices,” says a release from researchers. “Whether that means choosing a new refillable bottle or simply being more conscientious about cleaning the containers you own.”

If you’re concerned about cleanliness but don’t want to give up your beloved slide-top bottle, researchers recommend:

  • choosing stainless steel over plastic
  • avoid bottles with hard-to-clean spots
  • don’t let your bottle sit in your gym bag
  • run it through the dishwasher or hand wash it
  • use a weak bleach solution to sanitize it
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DH Vancouver Staff
Daily Hive is the evolution of Vancity Buzz, established in Vancouver in 2008. In 2016, the publication rebranded and opened newsrooms in Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal. Send story tips to [email protected]

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