It only makes sense that a clean home is a healthy home, but sometimes even the cleanest home can harbor allergens and bacteria that are dangerous to one’s health. That’s why it’s important to take the right steps to make sure you are cleaning your home with the most effective, modern tools. The examples below highlight today’s newest methods of ensuring your home stays happy and, most importantly, healthy.
Bacteria in the Kitchen
A study on bacterial contamination in kitchens published in “Letters in Applied Microbiology” in 2002 found, as many studies have since, that the kitchen is a dangerous place. The study focused on the spread of Salmonella, the bacteria widely associated with raw chicken. The study’s findings indicated that, frighteningly, even after contaminated areas were cleaned using a sampling of standard methods, the bacteria remained widespread.
To keep from spreading bacteria throughout your kitchen when cooking, wash your hands frequently and of course do not chop meats and vegetables with the same knives or on the same cutting board. While opinions vary on which product disinfects best, a 2006 study by St. Martin’s University comparing a host of common cleaning supplies found Clorox spray killed significantly more Salmonella bacteria than competing Lysol spray, but that Lysol disinfecting wipes killed more of the bacteria than the Clorox wipes. Interestingly, the study also included lesser-known brands of antibacterial sprays, one of which (Safeway brand) contained no active ingredients.
More on keeping foodborne illnesses at bay can be found by visiting The Centers for Disease Control website, www.cdc.gov.
Air purifying systems are all the rage, but do they work, and how well? The answer, according to Consumer Reports, depends on the type of system used. Ozone generating air purifiers are not recommended as the ozone they emit is very irritating to lungs, but filter or electrostatic machines are also options.
Filter systems work the way you’d think – a device pulls air through a filter to trap particles like dust and pollen. This type of filter may be a good choice for a renter as there are a number of portable varieties of the machine, though according to Consumer Reports, effectiveness of such devices can be unpredictable.
The other type of air purifier is what’s called an electrostatic precipitator which works kind of like a magnet, charging particles and pulling them out of the air. These machines are also available in portable units but because of the way these machines collect particles from the air, they require frequent cleaning.