Eating Dirt?

washing hands is importantOne of the most important ways to stay healthy is to wash our hands. Just think of all the germs that live on door knobs, school desks, pens, pencils, store counters, etc. I could go on all day about the prevalence of germs all around us. There is no need to go to the extreme of wearing masks and gloves all day, or to wash our hands every time we touch something, but there are certain times when washing hands is a necessity.

When should hands be washed?

Of course hands should be washed after coughing and sneezing, before preparing foods, and after using the restroom. But since this blog is happyfamilydiet.com, I’m going to emphasize the importance of washing hands before eating.

Imagine the following scenario: you come inside your home after working outside in the dirt and your hands are covered with dirt. Would you sit down at your kitchen table, pick up a sandwich and start eating? No. After putting the sandwich back on your plate, you would be able to see brown dirt spots where your fingers touched the bread. Since you don’t like to eat dirt with sandwiches, you probably would not eat it.

Now getting back into the real world, imagine the following scenario: you come inside your home after going to the store where you shut your car door that had invisible dirt from the road on it, then you pushed around a cart that had the previous person’s invisible germs all over it, then you touched items for sale that had invisible germs from the store worker on them, then you touched the check-out counter that hundreds of other people had also touched adding their invisible germs to it. Now would you sit down at your kitchen table, pick up a sandwich and start eating? Not if you thought about the serious germs living on your hands, just waiting to be transferred to the bread where they could be eaten and start living in your body. Luckily our bodies can handle a certain number of germs, but why overload it and risk getting sick?

How should hands be washed?

Many children don’t know how to wash their hands. They think they can turn on the water, dip their hands in it for a few seconds, and that’s it. Sadly, many germs are left on their hands. It is so important to use soap and to spend some time washing (at least 20 seconds.) Singing a little tune helps the 20 seconds go by faster. After washing, it is important to use a clean towel to dry the hands.

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