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Home Living : October 12th 2010
HLS - HOME LIVING: SOUTH, Tuesday, October 12, 2010 1 HOMELIVING That sponge may hide some nasties Washing dishes is a chore we all do daily, but new Westinghouse research shows it comes with hidden health hazards. The Westinghouse Kitchen Hygiene Report shows high levels of bacteria found on kitchen sponges were enough to make most people extremely sick. Examining the habits of more than 1000 Australians and conducting extensive laboratory testing, the report shows just how easily bacteria can transfer to freshly- washed dishes. More than half the sponges tested were found to have very high levels of bacteria strains like E. coli and Staphylococcus. E. coli can cause severe stomach cramps and diarrhoea, and some strains can be fatal. Staphylococcus aureus produce a toxin that induces vomiting and food poisoning. Food safety expert and microbiologist Craig Andrew-Kabilafkas, from Australian Food Microbiology, said one in five kitchen sponges tested had levels of contamination equivalent to that of a used Band-Aid. The research was conducted online by Pure Profile with a representative sample size of 1003 adults aged 18-64. The data was weighted by age, gender and region. Laboratory testing was conducted on 25 kitchen sponges, 25 dishes washed by hand and 25 dishes washed in a Westinghouse dishwasher. The report found 50 per cent of Australian households wait until their dish cloth is obviously dirty or smelly before replacing it, and one in three households only change their kitchen sponge every few weeks or less often. Mr Andrew-Kabilafkas said, while kitchen sponges should be changed at least three times a week to reduce the health risks associated with bacterial transference, a dishwasher wins hands down in the hygiene stakes. Only a dishwasher can safely wash dishes at temperatures around or above 68˚C which is needed to effectively kill 99 per cent of bacteria. The hot water tap temperatures that most households use to hand wash dishes is simply not high enough to effectively clean the dishes. ''Don't compromise your health by thinking you'll save a bit of time by quickly washing up a cup or eating utensil with a dirty kitchen sponge,'' he said. Dishwasher Tips Pre-rinsing is a waste of time and water . . . just scrape dishes clean Don't overload or stack dishes too closely or spray won't reach everything To avoid chipping, ensure breakables are separated and cannot touch if moved by the water spray Don't wash ashtrays -- ash won't dissolve and ends up on your dishes Clean your dishwasher regularly with a dishwasher cleaner Dishwashers use less water than hand- washing -- saving time and money APOLLO® PATIOS Patios Pergolas Carports Decks Screened & Glass Enclosures 4647 8850 www.apollopatio.com.au Construction by Apollo Additions 166046c * conditions apply * Showroom & Factory: Fax: 77 Larra St, Yennora 9632 1399 Specialising in Shopfront & Domestic Roller Shutters SAVE $$$ - FACTORY DIRECT PRICES Master Lic:408646770 Roller Shutters Shopfront Shutters Stainless Steel Doors Automatic Garage Doors FREE MEASURE & QUOTES Call 9632 1111 www.burwoodshutters.com.au 5% OFF YOUR LOWEST GENUINE PRICE Window Shutters Safety Doors Window Grilles Automatic Gates 2061737i hlw wk15 BUY DIRECT FROM THE MANUFACTURER AND SAVE $$$ METAL RO PRODUCTS PTY LTD We service the whole Sydney Metropolitan Area Ph 9675 5622 www.zammitroofing.com.au We supply • Carports & awning • Metal roofing • Guttering • Flashings & all roofing accessorie AMMIT 2199658i hls w35 NO OBLIGATION FREE MEASURE & QUOTE MD Regular MD Budget MD Luxury FROM $399 conditions apply 48 HOUR TURN AROUND 2112552i hls wk14
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