This is the one object in your home with the highest number of germs

Joe Vesey-Byrne
Wednesday 02 August 2017 15:00
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Picture:(iStock/Getty Images)

'Like licking a toilet bowl' is usually the bar used for how germ filled everything is.

The surprise culprit, where most of the bacteria lurks, is actually in your kitchen sponge.

The very item you use to clean the other items - it was staring you in the face the entire time.

A study published in Scientific Reports looked at bacterial microbiome composition of kitchen sponges.

Why sponges?

Sponges are good because of the moisture they retain, and the food with which they regularly come into contact.

They also spread germs around, when they're used to 'clean' other surfaces.

How much?

It found that sponges have a local density of 54 billion bacteria per cubic centimetres.

According to IFL Science, that's the same amount estimated to exist in human feces.

Studying the type of bacteria on the sponge, the team found that 36 per cent was the typical human skin bacteria - so we have only ourselves to blame.

Ways to reduce bacteria

Boiling or microwaving your sponges can kill off a significant amount of the bacterial load.

The study did find that 'regularly cleaned' sponges contained the same amount of bacteria as uncleaned sponges, but the method for cleaning them was never specified.

HT IFL Science

More: Can you guess what's 11,000 times dirtier than a toilet seat?

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