A recent study out of the University of Houston found that 39 percent of shoe soles sampled were contaminated with the bacteria C. diff (Clostridium difficile), a public health threat that is now resistant to a number of antibiotics. C. diff infections can cause severe diarrhea that may progress to colon inflammation and more serious health issues, especially if it does not respond to antibiotic treatment.
“Shoes are contaminated from diverse sources, and we are regularly contaminating our doorsteps by shoes,” says study author M. Jahangir Alam, Ph.D.
Beyond the C. diff risk, there are all kinds of bacteria that could be sneaking into your home via your shoe: most public restroom floors contain about 2 million bacteria per square inch (the average toilet seat: only about 50 per square inch). Not exactly guests you want traipsing around your living room, especially if you have young children who spend a lot of time at floor level.
While it’s not quite as common in the West, most cultures around the world request that you leave your shoes at the door—not only does it keep those harmful germs out, but it’s also a sign of respect for the home, which should be considered a sanctuary away from the outside world.
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Source: Healthy Holistic Living
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