Cover image for Did you just eat that? : two scientists explore double-dipping, the five-second rule, and other food myths in the lab / Paul Dawson and Brian Sheldon.
Title:
Did you just eat that? : two scientists explore double-dipping, the five-second rule, and other food myths in the lab / Paul Dawson and Brian Sheldon.
ISBN:
9780393609752
Edition:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : W. W. Norton & Company, [2019]

©2019
Physical Description:
xi, 288 pages : illustrations (chiefly color) ; 22 cm
Contents:
Introduction : a dive into the mysterious microbial world -- The five-second rule -- Beer pong : don't hate the game -- Are you ready to order? -- Blowing out birthday candles, or spraying germs on cake? -- Keep your dirty hands to yourself -- Hand dryers, or bacteria blowers? -- Things you put in your drink -- Can I have a taste of that? -- Pass the popcorn, please -- Dip chips and double-dipping -- Epilogue : food microbes and safety.
Abstract:
"When it comes to food safety and germs, there are as many common questions as there are misconceptions. And yet there has never been a book that clearly examines the science behind these important issues―until now. In Did You Just Eat That? food scientists Paul Dawson and Brian Sheldon take readers into the lab to show, for example, how they determine the amount of bacteria that gets transferred by sharing utensils or how many microbes live on restaurant menus. The authors list their materials and methods (in case you want to replicate the experiments), guide us through their results, and offer in-depth explanations of good hygiene and microbiology. Written with candid humor and richly illustrated, this fascinating book will reveal surprising answers to the most frequently debated―and also the weirdest―questions about food and germs, sure to satisfy anyone who has ever wondered: should I really eat that?"--Page [4] of cover.
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Summary

Summary

When it comes to food safety and germs, there are as many common questions as there are misconceptions. And yet there has never been a book that clearly examines the science behind these important issues--until now. In Did You Just Eat That? food scientists Paul Dawson and Brian Sheldon take readers into the lab to show, for example, how they determine the amount of bacteria that gets transferred by sharing utensils or how many microbes live on restaurant menus. The authors list their materials and methods (in case you want to replicate the experiments), guide us through their results, and offer in-depth explanations of good hygiene and microbiology. Written with candid humor and richly illustrated, this fascinating book will reveal surprising answers to the most frequently debated--and also the weirdest--questions about food and germs, sure to satisfy anyone who has ever wondered: should I really eat that?


Author Notes

Paul Dawson is a professor at Clemson University whose work has been featured on NPR, CNN, and MSNBC, among other media outlets. He lives in Clemson, South Carolina.

Brian Sheldon is a professor emeritus in food microbiology at North Carolina State University. He lives in West Jefferson, North Carolina.


Reviews 1

Publisher's Weekly Review

Dawson and Sheldon, a professor of food science at Clemson University and professor emeritus in food microbiology at North Carolina State University, respectively, examine common food myths and safety practices in this entertaining, science-based text. The authors divide their exploration into three sections: "Surfaces," "Air and Water," and "Transport Mechanisms." In each one, they provide a brief but lively discussion as well as the explication of their own experiments. In one, "brave student researchers fanned out on homecoming weekend" to gather used beer pong balls. The balls invariably were contaminated with bacteria, but to wildly varying degrees; a ball used outdoors was covered with nearly three million bacteria, while one used indoors was populated by just 180. Student researchers also swabbed restaurant menus, which were found to be "crawling with bacteria." The authors also discuss sharing popcorn, blowing out birthday candles, and double dipping chips. Dawson and Sheldon have a light and amusing approach despite their somber warning that food-borne illnesses are common and can be serious and even life-threatening. Clean, quirky graphics and a casual tone will help make this text fun and engaging for anyone with a strong stomach. (Nov.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.