5secondrule-main The Feed

Food Dropper! Does The ‘5-Second Rule’ Really Exist?


“The transfer efficacy is extremely low … hence the five-second rule.” ~ Professor

The Scenario!

You’re about to eat your favorite treat, when suddenly it drops to the floor!! Glancing both ways, you make sure no one is looking as you bend down to pick it up.

Gently blowing on it, you say to yourself ‘five-second rule‘ – before you gobble down the tainted snack!

But does the ‘five-second rule‘ really exist?

Research studies have been conducted on the subject at Aston University in Birmingham, England, as well as at Clemson University in South Carolina. Completed at different times, but with nearly identical methods, the studies revealed some very interesting results.

Designing Studies:

The studies were designed to include three different floor surfaces: tile, laminate wood, and carpet. The two universities used similar techniques during the experiment, but there were a few differences between each study. Aston University used a bacteria called Escherichia coli, and used Bologna and Bread to test the 5-second Rule.

Clemson University used a bacteria known as: Salmonella typhilmuium, and tested a wider range of foods with some variance in the moisture and temperature of the experiments.

The Verdict?

Each individual study of the five-second rule showed a similar result. Bacteria would transfer on contact with the food. They also discovered that hard-surface flooring transmits bacteria much easier than a carpeted surface.

The type of food also played an important factor in the transference of bacteria.

For example, noodles or sauce dropped on the floor would pick up much more bacteria than something such as a cookie or bagel. The more moist a food is, the more likely it is to become contaminated by bacteria. Professor Anthony Hilton from the Aston University Study says that “Bacteria are transferred immediately on contact.

But, he also adds: “The transfer efficacy is extremely low … hence the five-second rule.

Well, now that you know the truth, maybe you’ll think twice before eating a cookie that has been sitting on the floor.


Leave a Comment