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4 Reasons You Need to Clean a Can Lid Before Opening It

It’s a warm summer day and you’re dying to open that can of soda you’re holding in your hand. You can’t wait to hear that hypnotic sizzling sound that soda makes while it cools down in a glass full of ice cubes. Thinking about this can make you drool, but it is important to keep in mind that if you forget to clean the lid, you might be drinking insect or animal waste without even realizing it.

Cans of food and beverages travel a long way before you can get them at your closest convenience store. They are stored in large warehouses and transported in trucks, where they could potentially become contaminated by the presence of small animals or by the very dirt of the environment in which they are stored.

Bright Side did some digging into the reasons why it is not advisable to drink directly from a can or serve its contents in a container without first cleaning the lid, and we came up with this article for you.

1. The can might have been urinated on by an animal.

Animal urine can be a source of transmission of a number of diseases, one of them being leptospirosis. This is a disease caused by a bacteria that can be found in the urine of animals like mice and rats. Leptospirosis is transmitted through direct contact with bacteria. Some of the symptoms include fever, headaches, muscle aches, and general malaise, and can even become more severe and ultimately lead to a more serious form of the disease.

2. Canned goods could potentially become contaminated by surrounding dust and dirt.

It is not recommended to eat food containing dust, because according to the Pan American Health Organization, this component can be contaminated with microorganisms that are responsible for diseases. For example, the bacteria Bacillus cereus can cause diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and even vomiting when found in humans.

3. Insects like cockroaches can use the cans to deposit their eggs or feces.

According to the World Health Organization, these bugs are common spreaders of diseases like dysentery, gastroenteritis, diarrhea, typhoid, gangrene, and leprosy. And the best way to avoid these is to wash cans with soap and water before opening them.

4. Traces of animals or insects can fall into your food.

The lids of the cans could contain small traces of insects like flies, spiders, or cockroaches. If you don’t clean the lid, they can go unnoticed, and you risk having them fall into your food and contaminating the whole batch you’re preparing. In addition, some insects, like flies, are transmitters of more than 60 diseases, including typhoid, cholera, and polio. You probably don’t want any of those in your food!

And you, do you wash your canned goods before consuming them? It is never too late to build new habits. Tell us if you already knew some of these things. And if you know about other ones, share them in the comment section to make others aware of the danger of consuming canned goods without washing them!