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SHOCKING! 5-Second Rule Is True

By Sydney Cook
Posted On May 16, 2016
SHOCKING! 5-Second Rule Is True


Does eating a cookie off the floor make you a savage? We found out the five-second rule is actually true depending on what the food is and where it was dropped.

You can almost taste the last cookie in the bag, and as you raise it to your lips, your mouth begins to water with high hopes. And then, oops! It slips out of your hand and lands, along with your sweet anticipation, on the ground. Do you quickly pick it up, blow on it, and chomp? Or do you weep as you walk toward the trash can?

Some people might tell you the five-second rule isn’t real while others don’t care. Though it seems like an urban myth invented by a kid eager to relish the last bite of his fallen chocolate bar, two NASA scientists found that the five-second rule is actually the “30-second moisture and surface rule.”

According to NASA engineer, Mark Rober, the amount of moisture on your food and the kind of surface it has tumbled upon both greatly contribute to how many germs will be acquired. Food fallen on the floor, despite the surface, will indeed rack up bacteria. However, when the flopped food is moist and remains on the floor for more than 30 seconds, it will collect 10 times the amount of bacteria than dry food would after three seconds.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock
Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Aside from the condition of the food, Rober explained that the surface where the food is dropped is equally important. Pathogens like E.coli, salmonella, and listeria love wet environments, and can’t survive without absorbing water to receive nutrients they need to grow and multiply.

In the experiment, NASA engineers Rober and Mike Meacham found that “food dropped on rugs collect less bacteria than food dropped on linoleum.” Rugs’ woven tufts indicate that less surface area is touching the dropped food.

To sum it all up: the five-second rule is legit (as long as you consider the condition of the food and surface it has fallen on).

Watch the NASA experiment below.


Cover/Feature Photo Credit: Shutterstock