Do you refill your water bottle regularly? Pat yourself on the back for recycling and keeping hydrated like any responsible person should? Well, a new study has shown that water bottles could be harbouring as much bacteria as a toilet seat. Yep.
New research from treadmillreviews has revealed that reusable water bottles are in fact covered in germs. The researcher’s lab-tested refillable water bottles that had been used by athletes over the course of a week and found that the bottle with the highest bacteria count had more bacteria than a toilet seat. Further still, the average person’s water bottle was found to have over 300,000 colony forming units of bacteria. As if that isn’t gross enough, researchers also found that 60 per cent of the germs commonly found on water bottles are the kind that can make people sick.
And when it comes to the type of water bottles being used, some can be more germ-ridden than others. Researchers found slide-top bottles harboured the most bacteria by far, at 933,340 CFU per square cm. Squeeze and screw-top bottles came in second, at about 160,000 CFU per square cm, and straw-top bottles were the cleanest, at around 25,400 CFU per square cm. Just to put it into perspective, a pet bowl typically has about 47,300 colony-forming units of bacteria per square cm, the kitchen sink has around 3,190, and you toothbrush holder can be a bacteria hotspot too, with about 331,800.
According to Scientists the reason why water bottles get so nasty is that people simply don’t wash them enough. While reusuble bottles are the most environmentally choice, they should be washed every day, either by hand or in the dishwasher. And choose a stainless steel bottle, which is less of a magnet for bacteria than the plastic variety.
Now, before you totally freak, we in no way want you to begin contributing to an already withering environment by throwing your water bottle out after one go. Instead, wash it well in between refills. Another tip? Invest in a stainless steel bottle (our favourite is undoubtedly S’well bottles), the researchers found that drinking from this is much healthier than plastic alternatives.
Atast don’t drink your toilet seat, drink water!