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10 Germy Places in the Kitchen

Update Date: Sep 16, 2014 02:31 PM EDT

The kitchen is the place where foods get prepped. Since these meals end up going into our bodies, it is important to make sure that the kitchen is clean. However, despite wiping down counters and washing hands, several studies have found that the kitchen hosts many germs that can cause foodborne illnesses. In order to more effectively clean this room, you must know where the germs are hiding.

Here are 10 sneaky places where germs can live:

1. Refrigerator drawers and the Rubber seal

The drawers in the fridge where fruits and vegetables are supposed to go in can be contaminated with germs. Since people tend to forget to clean this area, bacteria such as salmonella and listeria can be lurking. Yeast and mold can also grow in this environment. To clean it, remove the drawer and use warm, soapy water.

The rubber seal in the refrigerators can become contaminated with harmful bacteria as well. You should clean this part of the fridge every so often with a warm towel soaked with soap.

2. Kitchen Sink

Just because you wash your hands with soap in the kitchen sink does not mean that the sink is clean. Since the sink comes into contact with a wide range of foods, it is important to sanitize it every day. A simple disinfectant option to use is a water-based solution with bleach.

3. Can Opener

When you use can openers, the sharp part of the device touches the product inside of the can. When you leave that area unwashed, germs can build up and contaminate other items in the drawer as well as other canned foods products. In order to be safe, you should wash can openers after each use and focus particularly on the blade region.

4. Rubber Spatula

The rubber spatula is one of the most commonly used kitchen tools. Since it comes into contact with so many different kinds of foods, it is essential that you wash it with soap every time.

5. Salt and Pepper Shakers

A lot of people are guilty of replenishing salt and pepper shakers when they are running low. However, the containers can build up germs over time. Instead of immediately adding salt and pepper every time you are running low, use up the seasonings and then clean the containers.

6. Knife block

If you put clean knives into the knife block, the block should ideally be clean, right? Wrong. The knife block can be a source of yeast and mold. To clean this item, soak it in hot soapy water.

7. Rubber-seal Containers

Rubber-seal containers are convenient and cost-efficient. Since these reusable containers can be used to carry different foods everyday, it is important to thoroughly clean the container and the caps. Bacteria, such as salmonella, yeast and mold can build up in the crevices of the caps.

8. Coffee Reservoir

The coffee maker, which is most likely used everyday, can be a host of so many germs. Ideally, you should clean the machine according to the manufacturers'' instructions everyday.

9. Blender

The blender is a gadget that needs to be cleaned thoroughly or else the germs will build up in certain areas. When cleaning it, you must disassemble it every time and wash the blade region carefully.

10. Sponges, rags and towels

Kitchen rags and towels are some of the dirtiest items in the kitchen. Everyday, people wipe their hands on these items without realizing that they are just transferring bacteria from the cloth and onto theirs hands. Try cleaning these rags and towels with soap on a daily basis. On top of these items, the sponge can also carry a lot of germs. To sanitize the sponge, microwave it for a few seconds after using it.

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