Popular Food Safety Myths Debunked
Claire Miles - April 15, 2019

Lester

By Shel Silverstein

Lester was given a magic wish
By the goblin who lives in the banyan tree,
And with his wish he wished for two more wishes-
So now instead of just one wish, he cleverly had three.
And with each one of these
He simply wished for three more wishes,
Which gave him three old wishes, plus nine new.
And with each of these twelve
He slyly wished for three more wishes,
Which added up to forty-six -- or is it fifty-two?
Well anyway, he used each wish
To wish for wishes 'til he had
Five billion, seven million, eighteen thousand thirty-four.
And then he spread them on the ground
And clapped his hands and danced around
And skipped and sang, and then sat down
And wished for more.
And more...and more...they multiplied
While other people smiled and cried
And loved and reached and touched and felt.
Lester sat amid his wealth
Stacked mountain-high like stacks of gold,
Sat and counted -- and grew old.
And then one Thursday night they found him
Dead -- with his wishes piled around him.
And they counted the lot and found that not
A single one was missing.
All shiny and new -- here, take a few
And think of Lester as you do.
In a world of apples and kisses and shoes
He wasted his wishes on wishing.

From double-dipping, storing butter at room temperature, to drinking old milk, there are many old wives’ food-tales out there we all live by on the daily. There are a lot of food rules that everyone lives by, but never really understand why. Case in point: the five-second rule. A spokesperson for the FDA (Food and Drug Administration), Peter Cassell, spoke with BuzzFeed answering some of our most pressing food questions. Cassell is the expert on the matter, as he advises others on food safety policies, outbreaks, and recalls.

Food myth number 1: You shouldn’t double-dip. 

via pexels

The answer: Half false. 

“Drinking milk a day or two after the milk’s expiration date (otherwise known as the sell-by date) may not be a safety issue and more of a taste issue.” However, be mindful that drinking milk any time after its expiration date “does increase the risk of developing food-borne illness from bacteria that might have grown.” Rule of thumb: those who are part of immunocompromised populations, such as the children, pregnant women, and the elderly, and the milk is way past its expiration date, don’t risk it. Otherwise, you’re good to go.