I asked Twitter to vote on four food myths and the results were rather worrying

Here’s a scenario that may sound all too familiar…

It’s 7.45am. You’re behind schedule already, still have cats to feed and a child to ‘encourage’ to school, and you’re making yourself a piece of toast. It’s a good piece of toast too – thickly sliced and real butter.

And then the worst happens.

You drop the toast on the floor. Fortunately it lands butter side up, so you quickly swoop down and pick it up. Five second rule right?

I KNOW this is going to sound familiar because I did a poll on Twitter and rather worryingly, a shocking 46% of people believed that the five second rule was a legitimate thing. Like there is some kind of unspoken law amongst floor bacteria that if you see food fall on the floor you have to count to five in your head before you’re allowed to clamber aboard.

(Note to self: do bacteria have a concept of time? Probably not.)

I hate to be the one to break it to you, but this does NOT HAPPEN. I don’t need to have done an online food safety and hygiene course to know that for sure. It doesn’t even help if you blow on the toast, or sort of brush at it with the back of your hand. The research is pretty conclusive on this one. I’m not saying I don’t DO it, but it’s not SCIENCE.

I did the poll on the back of research from FoodSaver Fresh, which identified some of the top food myths around storing and eating food. I thought it might be fun to compare the FoodSaver Fresh research results with the results of my own polls – surely the kind of people who follow my witty, intelligent thoughts on Twitter are the kind of people who are going to be clued up when it comes to food hygiene right?


In the FoodSaver findings, only 25% of respondents believed in the five second rule. We were not off to a good start.

If it smells okay, can I eat it?

We’re talking specifically food here, just to clarify.

35% of FoodSaver Fresh survey respondents said that this was true, and I have to admit that I’d probably be among that 35%. I have a pretty liberal attitude to best before dates, and am much more likely to just give something a sniff and chuck it in a frying pan. Apparently this is not cool. A lot of the harmful bacteria that cause food poisoning can’t actually be smelt, or tasted, so this is not a reliable method of checking for freshness.

How did Twitter fair in this one?

Again, NOT WELL.

Do you need to cool food before refrigerating?

The next one surprised me – should food be left to cool thoroughly before it goes in the fridge? I’d have said YES, like 73% of the FoodSaver people did, because I’d be worried about raising the temperature inside the fridge, but apparently that’s wrong too. I guess it makes sense when you think about it – warm food left at room temperature is bound to be a breeding ground for bacteria, and fridges ARE designed to chill food, so they can probably cope.

Predictably, even more of my Twitter followers got this wrong.

(You guys?!)

Cooked versus raw carrots

What do you reckon – do fresh, raw carrots have more nutritional value that cooked carrots? If you said yes then you’re not alone. 61% of people surveyed by FoodSaver Fresh believed this one, along with a whopping 82% of my Twitter gang.

(Honestly, I despair. What kind of people even follow me??)

In fact, carotenoids, such as the beta carotene in carrots, are more readily available when vegetables are cooked or processed. It’s the same with tomatoes. According to this, cooking tomatoes increases the lycopene content that can be absorbed by the body, as well as the overall antioxidant levels.

So how did you do? I hope better than the majority of Twitter, but hey, it’s good to learn new things right?

What is the FoodSaver Fresh anyway?

In case you’re wondering, the FoodSaver Fresh is a vacuum sealing solution, designed to help you keep your food fresh for longer. These guys know a thing or two about food storage, hence the research. You can find out more about FoodSaver Fresh here

Do you have any interesting food myths to share? Anything you’ve believed until recently? Please leave a comment and share your thoughts!

(This could be like the hang gliding all over again, but with food.)

FoodSaver Fresh food preservation



  1. Hayley Lynch
    11 January, 2018 / 3:30 pm

    I love your articles but I think I preferred to be naive lol …Think I will start to worry to much instead of the sniff and go routine !

  2. Hayley Lynch
    11 January, 2018 / 3:31 pm

    Ps I thought it was handgliding too !

  3. IGGY
    20 January, 2018 / 11:01 pm

    If it tastes shit…it is shit #NeverEatInTheDark

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