Brace yourself: Your reusable water bottle is a lot grosser than you think. You may do a good job washing it, but a new study in the NY Post reveals not everyone does and testing shows reusable water bottles can have 40-thousand times more bacteria than the average toilet seat. Let that sink in for a sec …
For the study, researchers swabbed parts of different water bottles three times each, including the spout lid, straw lid and squeeze-top lid. They found two types of bacteria: Gram-negative rods, which can cause infections that are increasingly resistant to antibiotics, and bacillus, and certain types of that can result in gastrointestinal issues. Squeeze-top bottles were found to be the cleanest of the styles tested, with a tenth of the amount of bacteria as a screw-top lid or straw-fitted lid.
The water bottles, which are described as being like a “portable Petri dish,” were also compared to household objects to show how filthy they are:
- They contain twice as many germs as the kitchen sink
- Can hold four times more bacteria than a computer mouse
- And 14 times more than a pet’s water bowl.
All of this is a good reminder that our water bottles need to be cleaned at least once a day, with hot soapy water. Experts also recommend sanitizing it at least once a week, or more often if you've been sick, drink from it while eating or put something other than water inside.