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The cutting board is an integral part of even the most basic kitchen, but it can be dangerous if you don't care for it properly. Cleaning your utensils is essential to make sure you prevent food poisoning. This is because, according to NHS Direct, there are about 200% more bacteria on an average kitchen cutting board than on a toilet seat. Because we cannot see bacteria with the naked eye, you may not be aware of the contagion occurring right before your eyes and you may not be taking the proper precautions. This means there is a high risk of contamination of your chopping board without you even realizing it.
Different colored chopping boards for meat and vegetables are a sensible way to prevent contamination. The Food Standards Agency (FSA) says that your chopping boards should be different when preparing raw or ready-to-eat foods, and you can color-code them. So every food type should have a designated chopping board. But in reality, this does not always happen in every home. Check out our list of handy tips to make sure you keep your chopping boards clean and don't get sick.
How clean is your cutting board? If you are not sure, you can try the cleaning methods below.
Wipe regularly with mineral oil. Follow the instructions on the label when cleaning. If you are using a plastic chopping board, you can leave it overnight and clean it with lemon. To sterilize your chopping boards after each use, pour boiling water and scrub. Remove it after it dries well.
If your cutting board is wooden, never wash it in the dishwasher. This causes warping, cracking, and various cleaning problems. If you are going to use the same cutting board, after cutting meat or chicken, do not chop vegetables or fruits without washing them thoroughly.
Do not dry your boards with tea towels. When it comes to cross-contamination, tea towels are the culprit. Paper towels should be preferred.
Not sure which type of cutting board to choose? You can read below for the pros and cons of marble, plastic, and wood.
University of California microbiologist Dr. Dean O. Cliver's experiment on the subject of "Which cutting board is more hygienic" revealed quite striking results. Dr. Dean O. Cliver placed bacteria in the middle of plastic, wood, and marble cutting boards and washed them all with detergent. Accordingly, the results were as follows:
According to the results of the experiment, the plastic cutting board was the product that contained the most bacteria after cleaning. Bacteria settle in small cavities and scratches were not cleaned even though they were washed, and multiplied in the pores where they were hidden. On the other hand, the plastic cutting board wears out as it is used, and as it wears out, small plastic pieces can mix with the food. This is very dangerous for human health.
The other stage of the experiment was the marble cutting board. Dr. According to Cliver's research, the bacteria on the marble cutting board did not disappear but spread to the entire surface. Although it contained fewer bacteria than a plastic cutting board, the bacteria spreading over the entire surface was still not cleaned.
Finally, the wooden cutting board was cleaned in the experiment and it turned out that the best choice in terms of health was the wooden cutting board. Among the cutting boards, wood products were the least bacteria-containing. Wooden cutting boards did not contain bacteria in their pores like plastic and did not spread to the surface like marble. The wood's ability to absorb water allows it to absorb bacteria trapped in the pores, and the bacteria die off after a few hours, almost completely disappearing. Wooden cutting boards were 99 percent free of bacteria 12 hours after they were washed and dried.
If we look at the test results, we need to choose wooden ones when choosing cutting boards. Wood, which can stay away from bacteria by 99 percent, should be preferred in terms of health.
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