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Fist bumps more hygienic than handshakes: study

LONDON--Fist bumps are more hygienic than handshakes and drastically reduce the risk of spreading infectious diseases, researchers in Britain have found.

The study discovered that a handshake transfers 10 times as much bacteria as a fist bump, following a series of tests at Aberystwyth University on the west coast of Wales.

Doctor Dave Whitworth, who led the research, said the study could have a serious impact on public health.

“People rarely think about the health implications of shaking hands. But if the general public could be encouraged to fist bump, there is a genuine potential to reduce the spread of infectious diseases.”

Researchers were able to measure the movement of germs using sterile rubber gloves, one of which was dipped into a coating of the potentially deadly E. coli bacteria, before exchanging a range of greeting gestures.

The results of the research, published in the American Journal of Infection Control, showed that handshakes passed on far more of the dangerous bacteria than fist bumps or high fives.

The number of germs moving between people was reduced by more than half during a high five and 90 percent in a fist bump.

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