This is the dirtiest part of the human body, and here’s how to clean it

If you’re like the two in three Americans who shower daily (via Harvard Health), you probably keep yourself pretty clean. You might think you know which parts of your body need the most cleaning because you wash so often, but it might not be what you think.

The dirtiest part of your body may surprise you
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RACHEL DILLIN/April 1, 2021 3:40 PM EDT
If you’re like the two in three Americans who shower daily (via Harvard Health), you probably keep yourself pretty clean. You might think you know which parts of your body need the most cleaning because you wash so often, but it might not be what you think.

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You may think that your hands are the dirtiest because they touch everything everywhere you go throughout the day. While washing your hands regularly with soap and water for 20 seconds is essential (according to the CDC), no other part of your body harbors more germs than your hands. You use your hands for so many things that you should never touch certain parts of your body, The Healthy advises. The dirtiest areas are included, along with obvious suspects like your backside, nose, and feet. A fascinating study by the Public Library of Science revealed an unexpected culprit.
The dirtiest part of your body is your belly button (via Public Library of Science). People with a belly button, but not a belly button, have more bacteria in the midline. Reader’s Digest Canada explains that part of the reason is that the water flows over the top of the shower due to its location and position. Because it’s more difficult to clean, the belly button harbors all kinds of bacteria, and it’s not your cleanest place. Glenner Richardson, MD, director of Microban’s microbiology and analytical chemistry lab, told The Healthy magazine, “The belly button harbors a large population of bacteria. It’s often inaccessible, so it stays dirty even after a shower.”
Dr. Richardson notes that sometimes, a mixture of stomach flu, strep, and other types of bacteria can produce a foul odor in your intestinal tract. Reader’s Digest recommends that you regularly clean your navel with warm water and a soapy cotton swab, especially if you’re smelly. If you have more problems with your belly button, be sure to see your doctor.

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