Wednesday, December 12, 2007
i'll have a water, hold the microbes.
How often do you ask for a lemon slice with your water at the local diner? Or maybe it's standard issue. Either way, what's crawling on that little citrus crescent may surprise you. or make you hurl.
I just finished reading a study in the latest issue of the Journal of Environmental Health entitled, "Microbial Flora on Restaurant Beverage Lemon Slices." The researcher collected a total of 76 lemon slices from 21 restaurants and tested the rind and flesh for a myriad of different bacteria, fungi, yeast, etc. Shockingly, 69.7% of the lemons had microbial growth on the surface, and 25 different species of microbe were detected. While the definite source for each microbe could be pinpointed, the type of microbes present are commonly found in/on human skin, saliva vaginal secretions & feces, and in raw meat/poultry. Furthermore, if the lemon is not thoroughly washed before use, there is no telling what else could have come into contact with the rind while it was in the field or handled during processing.
So the next time your server asks if you'd like a slice of lemon, you may want to dose it with alcohol first. just a thought.