The 5 second rule: New study backs up old saying about eating food off the floor

Is the five-second rule for real? A new scientific study shows eating food off the floor may not be as dangerous as you thought.

A preliminary study in Birmingham, U. K., discovered a direct link between the bacteria on the food, the time it's been on the floor, and the type of flooring.

Researchers dropped toast, pasta, a cookie and a sticky candy onto carpeted, laminate and tiled floors, and tracked how many germs were transferred to the food.

You may be surprised by the results.

"Transfer from indoor flooring surfaces is incredibly poor," wrote Anthony Hilton, a professor of microbiology at Aston University in England.

Carpet actually poses the lowest risk of bacterial transfer onto food, researchers said in news release.

The researchers also asked people about their willingness to eat food that had dropped on the floor.

"A large majority of people are happy to consume dropped food, with women the most likely to do so," Hilton said.

Mobile users can watch the report from ABC news here:

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