Anti-bacterial wipe only eradicate bacteria from kitchen surfaces for 20 minutes and using them to keep germs at bay is “an absolutely redundant” exercise, a scientist has said.
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Dr Clare Lanyon, a biomedical scientist from Northumbria University in Newcastle upon Tyne, said consumers may be wasting money on antibacterial wipes and sprays because common germs, which can replicate themselves in just 20 minutes, quickly recolonise back to original mass even if just one single cell is left over.
She said bar soap wipe was found to be more effective at destroying bacteria because they tended to contain ingredients that broke down cell walls.
Dr Lanyon was speaking to The Telegraph after conducting an experiment for the BBC programme, Trust Me I’m A Doctor, which found “dramatic growth” of microbes within 12 hours of cleaning of a regular kitchen surface with wipes.
She said it was always important to clean up thoroughly after handling raw meat to minimise the risk of harmful “foreign organisms” spreading but that this was most effectively done by a wipe with soap.
“Some bacteria can divide every 20 minutes so it doesn’t take long for one cell to become one million cells – in fact it would only take around 6.6 hours,”
“The point of the show is you don’t need to be so fastidious in cleaning your house from top to bottom because you can’t actually remove all bacteria and nor would we want to – exposing ourselves to everyday pathogens is good in keeping the immune system healthy and strong.
“The research shows you can quite quickly reestablish bacteria that we have in our homes anyway. You’re never going to get your home sterile and clean – no way – and there are better things to be doing with your time.