Your kitchen might look clean, but how clean is it really. We tend to only clean dirt if we see it with the naked eye, but bacteria can lurk in areas we cannot see. Because of this, we often give surfaces a quick wipe, or think that it’s enough to just rinse a dirty kitchen cloth. But even though these items have the appearance of being clean, it can still harbor bacteria that could make you sick.

The Kitchen Sponge

It makes sense when you think about it. You use the kitchen sponge to clean everything, which means all the dirt is left behind on the sponge itself! A study in 2017 showed that a single kitchen sponge can harbor more than 300 different kinds of bacterial species. But fortunately, most of these bacteria are not pathogenic – in other words, they can’t make you sick. To make sure your kitchen sponge is safe to use, follow these rules:

Don’t use sponges to clean raw meat juice; Toss your sponge once it becomes too dirty; Clean your sponge regularly, either in the microwave or the dishwasher.

Vegetable drawer

We keep our freshest fruits and vegetables in this drawer in the fridge. So you’d think that it’s clean. Unfortunately, it’s not as hygienic as you think. A study by the National Sanitation Foundation found that harmful molds and bacteria such as Listeria and Salmonella were lurking in the drawers. Given the fact that almost half of us don’t wash our fresh produce before consuming it, this finding is quite scary! Make sure you regularly wash your drawers (at least once a month) to prevent contamination with these nasty bacteria!

All handles

In a kitchen, we open several things: cupboards, faucets, the microwave, the oven, just to name a few. And all these handles have an alarmingly high number of bacteria present. It’s not only because we touch these items several times a day, but also because we often overlook them when cleaning. We tend to clean the ‘obvious’ places like the sink, counter tops, or stove tops. So next time you do your daily clean, make sure to give all the handles a wipe too!